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SuiteWorld16 Recap: 5 Capabilities Your Technology Solutions Must Deliver

Posted by Katy Schamberger on May 24, 2016 4:44:57 PM

Throughout SuiteWorld16, NetSuite’s annual conference, it’s no surprise that technology took center stage during several show-stopping keynotes, not to mention an insightful mix of breakout sessions and live demos.

Yet another common theme emerged, one of business transformation. The conference tag line, “Make Bold Happen,” was highlighted in a number of ways. For attendees and their businesses, one of the core takeaways is examining how you do business and what you can do differently: for your employees, for your customers, for your trading partners and for the larger marketplace.

A big part of that transformation is technology: solutions that solve your challenges, enhance your capabilities and encourage, rather than hinder, growth. Based on our depth of experience in supply chain software solutions—and what we heard throughout SuiteWorld16—we compiled 5 capabilities that your technology must deliver to increase your likelihood of sustainable growth and success.

Agility

In today’s fast-paced digital economy, businesses have to be prepared for change—sometimes on a huge level. Consider S-One Holdings Corporation, which, after receiving an exclusive license agreement from Hewlett-Packard, had to expand to global operations in a mere 9 months.

“We doubled the size of our company,” said John Lane, COO, during a SuiteWorld keynote.

That’s a significant undertaking, but one that can be more easily accomplished with software solutions that are designed to not only change quickly with a company, but also scale, whether that’s adding more employees, new offices, additional trading partners or more products.

The ability to rapidly shift without disrupting current business operations is one of many benefits of cloud solutions, which extend accessibility, productivity and collaboration anywhere—exactly what an evolving company needs. It’s no wonder, then, that the cloud is the place to be.

“People can’t get to the cloud fast enough,” said Zach Nelson, CEO, NetSuite, during the conference’s opening keynote.

Always on

Real-time data capture, order processing, fulfillment, customer service—today’s companies are expected to be available any time. A big part of that “always on” capability includes equipping employees and customers with access from any device.

Given NetSuite’s significant presence in the retail industry (among other industries), fulfilling the “always on” mindset makes sense.

Yet in today’s increasingly connected and immediate marketplace, a growing number of B2B and supply chain businesses are expected to deliver these same capabilities that were previously expected from consumer-facing businesses. From empowering field employees with the real-time information they need to deliver efficient and accurate service, to sharing up-to-date inventory and other pertinent data with trading partners at any point in the supply chain, today’s successful companies run on access—any time, anywhere and on any device.

Act small or big

You’ve probably seen Hyperloop One in the news, and during SuiteWorld, CEO Rob Lloyd had a chance to share more about the company’s quest to reinvent transportation through high energy efficiency coupled with electric propulsion. Nelson called Hyperloop One “a small company with a huge idea”—and they need the technology to keep pace as they bring this huge idea to life.

Conversely, SuiteWorld attendees also heard stories of cloud migration challenges. As Nelson mentioned during his keynote, it’s sometimes more difficult for established companies to move to the cloud—they’re grappling with legacy equipment and workflows, among other things.

Yet with the right technology, these big companies can act small—for example, moving to the cloud with little to no disruption of existing operations and in a way that helps accelerate employee buy-in.

Whatever your business needs—to act small or big—you need the technology that enables this flexibility while effortlessly scaling with you during future stages of your growth journey.

Speed

Maybe it was the self-serve candy station (thanks, Dylan’s Candy Bar!), the upbeat music or the general energy of the attendees, but throughout SuiteWorld, we felt the need—the need for speed.

Part of what makes the digital economy so challenging is that companies are expected to move fast, whether that’s responding to a customer, launching a new product or expanding into a new market.

And that means companies don’t have time for lengthy implementations or upgrades that hinder rapid progress. As NetSuite’s Paul Farrell, SVP, Product Marketing, put it, companies need “solutions that don’t get in the way of running the business.”

After all, the faster you can actually start using technology, the faster you’ll start seeing—and delivering—value, both to your employees and your customers.

Company-wide integration and visibility

Silos, disparate systems, communication lags—companies can no longer afford to let traditional obstacles hinder their productivity, operations and collaboration.

Instead, businesses must be equipped with the technology solutions that enable company-wide integration and visibility so that internal decision-makers have a grasp of what’s happening in the business at any time.

Imran Khan, Chief Strategy Officer at Snapchat, said during a keynote that internal connectivity is a must. Companies need “transparency in real-time to know what’s happening in the business,” he said.

And it doesn’t matter where that business happens. ValsparPRO Solutions operates mobile paint stores, which means they need visibility extended out into the field to sales trucks, painters and other team members. Without end-to-end visibility, they risk inaccurate inventory and delayed service.

“We have to have integration at all levels of our organization,” said Jeff Bipes, Director of Information Technology, Valspar.

Take a look at your company’s technology solutions. Can they deliver these same capabilities? If not, it may be an appropriate time to consider how you can enhance your existing investment, especially as you plan for future business growth.

The DSI Digital Supply Chain Platform (DSCP)™ is an ideal place to start—a comprehensive platform that unites and optimizes the processes, applications and always-evolving technology solutions that drive supply chain orchestration. The DSCP is now a Built for NetSuite verified SuiteApp, enabling you to further extend your NetSuite instance with the agility of persona-based processes tailored to your company’s specific business needs. That industry-specific configuration ensures you can solve pervasive business challenges—and our sentiments were echoed by one of our favorite SuiteWorld16 quotes.

“Customization is not a dirty word,” Nelson said.

We couldn’t agree more! If you were also at SuiteWorld16, tweet us at @DSIMobile and let us know your favorite conference highlight or customer story.

Topics: b2b technology, b2b technology solutions, digital supply chain, digital supply chain solutions, dsi digital supply chain platform, Events, netsuite, suiteworld16, Supply Chain Management, supply chain solutions, supply chain technology

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