How to Kick-Start Business with New Partners in Hours ... Not Weeks

Adam Hughes
Ecosystem integration technology promotes faster partner onboarding, enabling you to access new service and revenue streams faster.

Recent discussions about how businesses can benefit from expanding business ecosystems and faster partner onboarding reminded us of how things used to be in the analog days. Remember before direct deposit when you had to wait seemingly forever for a check to clear before you had access to the funds? What about pre-streaming Netflix, when your movie came in the form of a mailed DVD instead of the simplicity of the service today, where you can view any movie or TV show in its catalog at any time, from any device? 

If those processes sound archaic, that’s because in this day in age, they are. From a business perspective, the last thing you can afford to do when it comes to a new customer is delay getting them up and running. All the financial promise of that agreement hangs in the balance if you are unable to start the B2B data exchange process in a timely manner. 

Onboarding is a very early and very critical step for participating in a business ecosystem, and it’s important that the onboarding process be quick and efficient. Put yourself in the shoes of your customers or trading partners: They chose your business to help them improve their own business, and they want to reap the partnership benefits sooner than later. Few will be happy if it takes weeks or even days to get going.

Having the right integration technology in place, however, enables you to onboard the members of your business ecosystem faster so you can focus on delivering business value to your organization. Let your competitors waste their resources on arduous and manual onboarding tasks while you kick-start your B2B relationships with ease and in just a few hours.

A Business Ecosystem, in a Nutshell

From customers and trading partners to everything else in-between, having control of and visibility into an ecosystem is no longer a luxury for enterprises. To grow your business and gain truly measurable value, it’s mandatory. 

Let’s take a step back and define what it is we are talking about when we say “ecosystem.” An ecosystem for the modern organization comprises all the customers, trading partners, vendors, and suppliers – and their technologies – you interact with in order to conduct business. That includes every manufacturer or plant you source [arts from, every distributor who sells products for you, and every transportation and logistics business you use to help move your own goods. But it doesn’t stop there; an ecosystem also includes the SaaS, on-premises, and cloud services you use to manage those interactions, including any CRM, ERP, HCM, and payment applications.

Today’s enterprise must be able to manage the integrations across this expansive business ecosystem, but the ability to connect to every type of application and every trading partner requirement is extremely difficult given the number of unique systems and technologies in use for each. It’s why it’s so critical to streamline the onboarding process and ensure you can bring on new partners as your business growth warrants them.

How Heavy Customization Slows Onboarding

Typical onboarding processes require a heavy amount of custom partner configuration to meet the unique requirements of each new customer. According to a recent market survey, 63 percent of respondents admitted that manually customizing partner requirements slows down the rate at which they can do business with that partner.

Those same companies surveyed would often take 2 to 4 weeks just to start doing business with a new trading partner. That greatly reduces the rate that an enterprise can acquire new business revenue while also potentially slowing the organization’s overall business operations.  

A cumbersome onboarding process can also be costly in terms of reputation and service-level agreements (SLAs). Companies that haven’t embraced integration technology and continue to use manual onboarding methods can find themselves in violation of a customer’s SLA, which could lead to costly fees. Those same companies also are jeopardizing the relationships they’ve worked so hard to build with trading partners and customers by being more difficult to do business with. 

The Modern Way to Onboard

Organizations must be able to handle any type of requirement their digital ecosystem throws their way. When businesses can easily add, remove, and alter a piece of data related to a customer or a partner configuration, they are enhancing their agility as well as their responsiveness. 

Optimizing operational agility is paramount to gain a better handle over your digital ecosystem. Once you have the right technology in place, you can consolidate legacy and disparate systems, and automate the onboarding processes and integrations that drive your ecosystem. 

A centralized integration platform can provide faster partner onboarding for EDI and non-EDI workflows, as well as the connectors that integrate any type of application without additional coding. With the right technology, you can have your trading partners set up for data movement within minutes, and EDI and XML data transformation only takes a few hours or less once you’ve completed the initial mapping. 

Cleo Integration Cloud allows enterprises to automate onboarding tools and data transformation because it comes pre-loaded with B2B connectors that give you a repository of hundreds of preconfigured, ready-to-deploy communication templates so you can connect faster. With versatile APIs and application connectors, organizations can accelerate the delivery of integration with your most critical business, and end-to-end visibility ensures you stay compliant with your customers’ SLAs. 

Your customers shouldn’t have to wait, so why should you? Download “How to Rapidly Onboard Ecosystem Partners and Applications” today to discover how integration technology enables businesses to support any data requirement and eliminates the trading partner onboarding and IT application onboarding complexities that slow business growth.

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