Software-as-a-Service Set to Soar

On-demand technology platforms are playing an increasingly important role in enabling information and process collaboration, according to a new Aberdeen Group benchmark study titled, “B2B Collaboration: How On-Demand Platforms Accelerate Value and Impact TCO.” For the study, Aberdeen surveyed more than 300 enterprises and concluded that companies seeking to improve their collaboration capabilities should take a strong look at on-demand or software-as-a-service solutions.

On-demand technology platforms are playing an increasingly important role in enabling information and process collaboration, according to a new Aberdeen Group benchmark study titled, “B2B Collaboration: How On-Demand Platforms Accelerate Value and Impact TCO.” For the study, Aberdeen surveyed more than 300 enterprises and concluded that companies seeking to improve their collaboration capabilities should take a strong look at on-demand or software-as-a-service solutions. The study was sponsored in part by E2open — the leading provider of supply chain management software-as-a-service (SaaS) for visibility and control over global supply networks.

Industry leaders are shifting their operations model from a traditional manufacturing-centric model to a focus on synchronizing the extended supply network. That network includes multiple tiers of suppliers and distribution points, all of which must work together to ensure that the right product is delivered at the right time, to the right location, at the right cost. To achieve this goal, companies are creating global organizations accountable for overall supply chain effectiveness. These organizations are driving adoption of supply chain initiatives, such as outsourced manufacturing and design, lean supply chain, operating and sourcing in low cost countries (e.g., China), operational improvement programs (e.g., vendor-managed inventory), globalization (i.e., leveraging economies of scale across multiple operating units), and trading partner integration. In turn, these initiatives are driving a mandate among supply chain leaders for better information integration and process automation with their suppliers and customers — both of which can be provided by shared process and information platforms.

“Trading partner collaboration is critical in today’s environment of highly competitive local demand and increasingly global supply, requiring faster and more automated processes to stay competitive,” said Beth Enslow, Aberdeen’s senior vice president of enterprise research and author of the report. “In addition, most supply chains are becoming increasingly distributed, where processes between business partners on both the supply and the demand sides have grown more complex. Electronically connecting and collaborating with suppliers, customers and other critical parties such as transportation carriers is vital to thriving in this demanding environment.”

According to Aberdeen:

— Approximately 69 percent of companies report that they have increased their emphasis on creating an improved flow of data between themselves and their business partners over the past three years, while only 4 percent say the emphasis has decreased.

— Eighty percent of companies say that their emphasis on customer collaboration has increased over the past three years, while only 2 percent say that it has decreased.

— Companies report an increased focus on supplier collaboration, complicated by more low cost country sourcing. The average company reports 12.9 supply disruptions a year that cause a material impact on their company.

For many companies, scaling their collaboration initiatives across multiple customers and suppliers is a challenging project. As a result, leaders are finding ways to enhance their data and process collaboration by employing software-as-a-service solutions to enable improved information and process collaboration.

For the entire article, visit the Sys-Con site “New Aberdeen Report Validates Use of Supply Chain Software-as-a-Service for Information and Process Automation Between Companies“.

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