All the experts finally agree — it’s a recession and we need to get back to basics if our businesses are going to survive. The question is, after years of irrational exuberance, do you remember what the basics are? I’ll give you a hint … good spend and supply management professionals practice them every day. That’s right, smart spending — backed by smart research, smart processes, smart people, and smart technologies — that delivers value to you and your customers is the basics of good business. And if you forget what that means, and can’t find any procurement professionals nearby, you can also just ask anyone born without a silver spoon in his or her mouth who had to work their way through University, work to get that first job, and work to get ahead. Having survived good times and bad, they’ll tell you that, no matter what, integrity, hard work, and an eye on communication, relationship management, and productivity is the way to go.
So what does this have to do with B2B 3.0? Well, in these times you have to spend less, do more, and provide more value if you want to keep existing business and have any chance at all in winning new business. This means that you need to step up your productivity, and this will require better processes enabled by better systems. However, if you are still in the B2B 2.0 world, better systems cost more money, and chances are you’ve paid too much for the systems you have as it is.
But if you embrace the B2B 3.0 world, you’ll find that better systems cost less, not more, and deliver more value than their old-school counterparts ever could. This is because B2B 3.0 solutions take advantage of the true power of the Internet and the new SaaS delivery model while 2.0 solutions are confined to expensive and proprietary networks and delivery models. B2B 3.0 solutions are built to be multi-tenant and leverage an economy of scale from the ground up, while B2B 2.0 solutions are still force-fitting classical architectures onto expensive hosted ASP delivery models. This also means that B2B 3.0 can leverage the power, knowledge, and innovation of the community it creates while 2.0 creates isolated user groups, who have to struggle just to exchange limited amounts of information.
Furthermore, B2B 3.0 is agile. It gives you visibility into your business, helps you organize your institutional knowledge in a central repository where everyone can take advantage of it, and enables the implementation — and maintenance — of best practices. This increases your productivity, and does so at a lower cost since true SaaS providers leverage economies of savings and pass those savings onto you, and allows you to spend more time on communication, relationship management, and finding new ways to bring even more value to your customers. In other words, unlike the technology evolutions that preceded it, B2B 3.0 is the first true technology revolution that lets you get back to basics.
To find out more about B2B 3.0, check out the inaugural Sourcing Innovation Illuminations, now available for quick and easy download with No Registration Required!