6 ene. 2012
By José Payano
Overarching Principles supporting the Concept
1. A Strategic Framework for (e)Business transformation: From the business manager standpoint, in the complexity of the technology and the environment surrounding it there exists a high probability of failing in assessing and selecting the right technologies, infusing the company with the right practices and culture, motivating people and avoiding conflicts among the stakeholders, etc....to get an e-business implemented in the correct way. Companies like CISCO, AMAZON, BBVA (Spain), e-GALICIA (Banco Galicia, Argentina) probably has got "all things right" from the outset. On one hand AMAZON was born in this New Economy and, as such, imbued the right practices and technologies from the beginning. On the other, some companies just "grasped" the vision, like BBVA, Banco GALICIA, and CISCO: while many others just leaven their companies with software, which do not, by itself, propel the necessary growth they so eagerly are in need of.... So a methodology would help establish a "standard procedure" to enact an enterprise from its current status to an e-Business allowing it to reach the e-Business Mantra in an assured and ordered manner.
2. Protect Cash-flow (producer) business from the upheaval involved in rampaging transformation: If businesses are to profit from available technologies, they must re-built themselves from the ground off. But building a company from zero is not a luxury to be permitted to a brave corporation, specifically, current business practices, cultural issues, entrenched power, personal interests, or just greed would prevail if a serious intent should be made over changing the status-quo in a big company. But, what if we could "displace context" and, instead of thinking to suffuse the current company with technology, we re-think the business from its grounds first and then, and only then, assign the new processes to available technologies in a series of unambiguous phases. All work is done in an adjuvant environment, where Electronic Domain Technologies, are not just wished for, but are in the heart of company’s inception. In so doing, we put the new team in a protected environment, and imbue the new practices and systems without great resistance. Moreover, this new business unit “demands” this technology, has a budget of his own, and got the support from a “big mother”. Not so clearly derived, are the easier sales for the software vendors and ease of implementation.
3. Preserve current business unit strengths and market (or Industry) standing: Converting a current company to an e-business does not have to mean losing (nor risking) his current position. It means re-using its resources in an unobtrusive way. What we do today, is ineffective from this point of view: We try and try to push more and more modern technology into the current business, but the way we do it is, by far, very compartmentalized. The culture, the paper-laden processes become intermingled with the new technologies, and there exists a duplicity in organizations that is hiding a lot of peripheral unnoticed costs (…). We tend to use separate technologies in different segments of the same business processes, without ever looking profoundly at the value-adding processes and conceiving the links from the beginning. That’s where the current practices in Business Integration appear. If we try to apply e-business solutions to current business we implement CRM, Portals, Web Enabling tools, but the business at all remains unchanged, immutable in its grounds…. Well the InterEconomic Bridge comes there and solves that problem too: In the InterEconomic Bridge realm a new unit is devised to take on the necessary tides of change. This new unit is at the right side of the “bridge” and is all “Digital” down to its “bones”. It is a child born in the New Economy reign, without the constraints from the existing company, except for that this one provides the financial resources to give the other birth (…). This unit is a “mirror image” of the original business unit, in terms of re-using its “content” in a Digital Way. But this mirror company is far more than a copy, it is a complete re-conception of the original business unit in the digital era…Think of it as if you were able to get the opportunity to (re) design a running company down to its tiny activities with the available technologies and practices in this millennium. This unit, would be, obviously, all digital, paper less, documents would exist only in digital form, e-signatures, totally web enabled, integrated with an enterprise nervous system, with a coalesced overall customer strategy, etc…. It is what I call the original business unit's Digital Hologram (DH). Furthermore, and here we tackle one of the main issues underpinning this framework: All business support units, context as some authors prefer to call it, remains untouched in the original business unit, with a single addition: They are persuaded to provide digitally integrated services to the new DH. In so doing, there are several aspects to be considered as value added ones:
¨ Formerly, the current unit continues supporting the competitive advantages it has aided to create in the old business. There is not lost focus, no diversion of resources, no organization politics, no resistance to the new processes, nothing new, but providing some services to a new unit, which by itself has provided the means through its portal and knowledge enabling processes (…).
¨ Secondly, each single unit, system, data, and any intangible assets (as knowledge) are migrated to the Digital Hologram. The products and services themselves are provided digitally through the DH but in terms of data, they may be using the data in the legacies systems provided by the mother company.
¨ Thirdly, the Bridge provides a means to “link” the new DH to its original company in an ordered way. Both units co-exist in uncompetitive collaborative domains.
¨ The old units begin to infuse the new “way” in a very inched and controlled manner. They are not upset by the rippling change; there are no tremors, no fear of losing the place, of being left behind or asides…
¨ By the end of the process, these same units would be prepared to work totally independent from the mother company, which has (hopefully) become a New Economy (digital) enterprise.
 Ultimately, these units become self-sustained and the mother company exists only as its core in the DH. The company has become an e-company.
 This is why the concept is called the “InterEconomic Bridge”: You are essentially bridging your old and new business model by linking your new with your old most highly appreciated capabilities i.e. your core coperations!
 For the purpose of this reckoning…