Have you ever wondered why traditional business process technology has not kept pace with consumer technology? 

It’s intriguing to note how effortlessly we integrate collaboration into our personal lives. Yet, in a business setting, we’re often reluctant to share. What’s the reason behind this?

The Dichotomy of Sharing: Personal vs Business

In our personal lives, we’re spontaneous collaborators – we update our information on social media multiple times throughout the day. Our photos, growth, travel, retirement plans, financial investments and schedules are all accessible, and we collaborate with our peers and teammates, financial advisors. And for the most part, this is highly secure and exponentially improves our quality of life.

Yet when it comes to our work, we selectively share within our enterprise and rarely, if ever outside of the enterprise with those whom we call our trusted partners. We treat transactional business information as patent pending invention that needs to be guarded. Yet our CFO publishes the outlook and performance at the most granular level every quarter.

This mentality of scarcity is a legacy from centuries of guarding the smallest piece of information, a lose-lose proposition.

Benefits of Data Sharing 

But what if we adopted a mindset of abundance and selectively shared relevant business information mutually with our trusted partners – our suppliers, distributors, and customers – helping them plan for their business and they in turn share their information that is relevant to us to help us be more effective and efficient in our business.

Lets apply it to specific industry scenarios –

For a manufacturer (across industrial, CPG, Pharma) wouldn’t it be perfect if we could get our vendors’ forward-looking production schedule for our orders periodically and adjust our manufacturing and purchases – so that we can save on idle time and honor our commitment to customers?

For a distributor, wouldn’t it be perfect to know the payment run date and claims for our receivables from our customers so that we are not wasting time and resources following up on outstanding and can better plan our cash flow?

For a Private Equity operating partner, wouldn’t it be perfect if the portfolio companies share daily key metrics for sales, cash, leverage in a common format that can be consolidated across the entire portfolio?

And what if we can automate transactions from the clean room instead of waiting on paper documents; the lost productivity of stock-out on shop-floor or thousands of hours on dispute resolution can be eliminated.

Overcoming the Challenge

The concern was securely sharing relevant data – and the financial sector elegantly solved for it using data clean rooms for M&A and financing transactions.

All of this is eminently possible for every business and more importantly with the application of AI we can identify anomalies and automate the actions.

The secret is to start with the critical bottlenecks that have a dependency on external entities and impact your business. E.g. For a CPG business, it is about identifying the potential disputes with the retailers on pricing, deliveries and invoicing. Streamlining this process will improve sales, cash flow and create customer loyalty.

What are we doing about it?

At Midoffice Data, we have 21 identified collaboration scenarios and have embedded them in our Cohort clean room collaboration ecosystem, which is a part of astRai plug-and-play data suite.  We have also layered these with microservices apps to innovate the next generation of mid and back-office business processes.