B2B transactions are entering a new era where decisions are no longer supply-based, but demand-driven. Enterprise digitalization has enabled businesses to be more savvy shoppers when it comes to finding the best goods and services for their needs. This has spun the entire B2B marketplace on its head, and CIOs are challenged with navigating new types of transactions now that the supply chain has been digitalized.
This new marketplace was a big topic of discussion among IT industry experts taking part in the 2015 European CIO Conference (EuroCIO), which took place December 2 through December 3 at the Grand Hyatt in Berlin. This event is the flagship gathering of the European CIO Association, which allows peer-level, face-to-face communication and sharing of ideas between professionals who navigate the exchange of information taking place across the continent.
The group itself is a not-for-profit, vendor-independent structure, but when it comes to discussing the supply chain, vendor relations are very important. This is especially true when the conversation has changed as much as it has over the past several years, with network availability being the key to maintaining relationships all along the supply chain.
Network availability becomes a priority when dealing with applications that need to communicate along heterogeneous networks. In this new supply chain paradigm, the application needs to be able to travel freely among participating parties — the buyer, the seller, then back to the buyer — without interruption or interference.
The digital supply chain can be a complicated environment, as there are usually several tiers of goods and services needed to bring a final product to market. This is especially true in the world of IT, where information must be secure as it travels over channels but also compliant so that all levels of the supply chain can access the data each needs to perform.
When this process gets digitalized, the logistics of how these communications can succeed are understood by building one application with assured network availability that can speak to all of the different tiers. Without a properly managed network infrastructure in place, a product or service may never make it to market.
This is where vendors that can help build and manage networks are important. Without a well-managed network that can provide application availability and prioritization for businesses, they can't be discretionary shoppers within the digital IT supply chain. With an application performance guarantee solution, IT-intensive enterprises can manage their networks to help deliver on their capital efficiency.
Read our blog post, Beyond WAN Optimization: Making the Case for Application Performance Guarantee, to learn more about the challenges of application availability and the importance of ensuring application performance.