In a faster and ever changing business world, globalization and highly connected supply chains are an important part of most industries. In combination with shorter innovation cycles and more complex technology it determines how organizations act and interact in their daily business. This applies also to the cross-organizational collaboration with customers, partners, and suppliers. The new evolution of a global supply chain network is more connected, intelligent, responsive, and predictive as ever before. As businesses expand globally, a company can no longer be seen as an island. It’s a consolidation of different companies working as one on shared projects to deliver perfect costumer outcomes and a great customer experience. In such a connected world the ability to work efficiently with external partners can make the difference between success and failure. An important part of this collaboration is how organizations manage, access, extract, and share relevant data with all parties included, regardless if they are part of the same organization or not. Opening your siloed entities to enhance cooperation with external parties and share necessary data can no longer be an exemption, but is the inevitable consequence of the development mentioned above.

“The biggest sources of opportunity are collaboration and partnership. And today, with digital communication, there is more of that everywhere. We need to expose ourselves to that as a matter of doing business.”

Mark Parker

Due to these characteristics, challenges and the exponentially growing amount of data in organizations, it is becoming more and more obvious that new digital solutions for data management, data exchange, and enterprise process management are desperately needed. A critical element is how the data holding systems and the available data itself will be integrated and made accessible for employees and external partners along with data consuming applications. This is not just of special interest for greatly integrated supply chains but also organizations themselves, due to strong organizational and especially systemic barriers.

The numbers above clearly show what it means if the necessary data and information is not available to the right people, at the right time, at the right place. According to a Gartner report (ref) the average financial impact of poor data management on businesses is at staggering 9.7 million USD per year.

“Without data you are just another person with an opinion.”

Edwards Deming

Nowadays, data is often compared with oil, but its actual value is about providing new insights. To enable that, the necessary data has to be available and managed properly. There are a lot of benefits coming with good-quality data, such as better decision making, increased productivity, better compliance and of course more accurate targeting and communication in marketing and customer relationship management.

“The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight.”

Carly Fiorina

To solve the indicated challenges and problems and break down organizational and systemic islands, most solution providers depend on migrating the required data from an arbitrarily number of different sources to central data warehouse, data lakes, or, in the supply chain case, cloud based supply chain management tools. With this option it is very difficult to ensure the data clones are always up to data and the latest data is accessed. But first of all, it means a waste of resources due to creating redundancies.

ConnAct is pursuing a different approach. By integrating and connecting all kinds of different systems and data sources, and merging it through a decentralized network and a virtual data layer, ConnAct is not moving any data but leaving it at its source. The original data is queried and provided in real time to ensure the data is up-to-data.