10 Ways to Build a Business-Tech Ecosystem

 
 
By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 04-12-2017 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    10 Ways to Build a Business-Tech Ecosystem
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    10 Ways to Build a Business-Tech Ecosystem

    CIOs need to be open-minded about partnerships. Find out how to redefine your tech universe to take advantage of external innovation.
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    Align Tech With the Business
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    Align Tech With the Business

    In working closely with the c-suite to align IT with the business, find out which emerging technologies will disrupt the marketplace, determine sources of future value and develop the means to capture them.
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    Open IT to the Outside World
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    Open IT to the Outside World

    Whether dealing with customer sourcing, product distribution or payment solutions, the future will depend on optimal interactions with partners to cover a broad range of IT-driven functions.
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    Operate in Real Time
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    Operate in Real Time

    When making internal IT system components available as a service to external parties, be sure they function in real time, with partners accessing apps on an as-needed basis.
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    Internalize External IT
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    Internalize External IT

    When opening up internal systems, you're also helping your business users plug into external capabilities by, for example, integrating a third-party point-of-sale app into your internal payment system or adding an outside chat function to your website.
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    Overhaul Your Infrastructure
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    Overhaul Your Infrastructure

    All these bidirectional efforts require a next-generation integration architecture. Your data management catalog, for instance, will need to accommodate third-party data, with governance in place for data cleansing, rationalization and standardization.
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    Define Parameters
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    Define Parameters

    Cyber-security policies and oversight must extend to third-party partners and vendors. Your organization and its partners also must address legal questions about intellectual property, liability, profit-sharing, etc., so engagement in your ecosystem doesn't hinder benefits.
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    Promote Tech Testing
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    Promote Tech Testing

    Encourage IT staffers to play with new tech in dedicated sandlots to ensure that these technologies can work at scale, and so they can be brought on board as soon as their value is proven.
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    Bundle Company Services
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    Bundle Company Services

    By transparently integrating all your organization's services, you can address customer pain points in a more consistent, unified manner, while also making services more appealing.
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    Encourage Interactions
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    Encourage Interactions

    By enabling users to interact with each other socially through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, etc., you create the opportunity for as many positive customer exchanges as possible.
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    Keep an Open Mind
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    Keep an Open Mind

    A broad ecosystem isn't about hanging on to IT. Protecting systems to the point of diminished engagement defeats the purpose. Bulletproof systems are out. New app and platform deployments launched within days (instead of months) are in.
 

Memo to CIOs: You're going to need a bigger boat for IT. Why? Because ever-shifting technology and business innovations are redefining tech departments: They are increasingly morphing into broad technology ecosystems that expand via internal and external tech integration, as opposed to sitting still as standalone units, according to a recent article from McKinsey and Company. The article, "Adopting an Ecosystem View of Business Technology," provides a step-by-step breakdown of how to build such an ecosystem, with takeaways addressing IT infrastructure, open-source testing, customer interactions, cyber-security and even legal impacts. A wave of shifting trends is creating the need for this broader approach, according to McKinsey: By 2018, more than half of large enterprises—and more than 80 percent of enterprises with advanced digital transformation strategies—will develop their own industry platforms or launch partnerships with existing ones, according to industry research. By 2020, there will be more than 50 billion connected devices. "These numbers point toward a radical reframing of what IT is and how CIOs manage it—not as an internal collection of information technologies, but as a broad network of ecosystem technologies," according to the authors, Driek Desmet, Niels Maerkedahl and Parker Shi. "For the CIO, this shift also creates a significant opportunity to work closely with the CEO on business priorities and to become a prime strategic partner." The following tips were adapted from the article.  

 
 
 
 
 
Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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