IBM Partner Engagement Manager
Solution Brief

Executive Summary: The complex challenges of ongoing global B2B communities

A centralized B2B System of Engagement that helps improve operational performance and velocity, while reducing risk

In today’s global B2B landscape, companies depend on a vast network of customers, partners and suppliers. How well they manage those relationships, from selecting the right organizations, to how efficiently and effectively they interact on a day to day basis, directly influences revenue growth and profit margin.

Over the last few decades, with globalization and digitization trends, companies have done what was necessary to find and connect with the right trading partners, customers and suppliers. However, without a centralized, unified infrastructure for establishing these ecosystems, companies have had no choice but to manually orchestrate multiple systems, tools and networks, resulting in a challenging, complex environment.

Many companies rely on teams of people solely for the purpose of onboarding, updating and maintaining information about members of their B2B community. The process typically involves a lot of manual capture of information – phone calls, emails, faxes, and spreadsheets. Onboarding backlogs are common, as are frequent errors that require hands-on attention from support teams. It’s disjointed, manual, constraining, while slowing time to revenue, and limiting new opportunities for growth.

Solving today’s issues in the Cloud

IBM Partner Engagement Manager (PEM) redefines and transforms how clients engage with their global community of partners, customers and suppliers. It’s open and customizable, enabling management and control across all aspects of the customer, partner and supplier relationship in order to improve operational performance, increase velocity and reduce risk.

Self-service engagement model for efficiencies of scale

A key concept supported with PEM is self-service. Partners, customers and suppliers are automatically notified by PEM whenever their input is required and are empowered to provide their own information directly into the system. They are an active participant in this dynamic community.
Alerts and reminders let the partners know when they’re about to miss a deadline and monitoring capabilities ensure that they have fulfilled all the necessary requirements for doing business with the sponsor organization.

Establish a centralized B2B ecosystem

PEM replaces chaos with order and control. It can leverage an existing System of Record (SOR) that organizations have in place, and also provide a SOR for partner details that are essential to interacting with various systems involved in B2B integration and managed file transfers.

From a sponsor organization’s perspective, PEM provides a centralized point of control to manage and monitor onboarding as well as ongoing interactions with the B2B community. PEM is customizable and extensible, enabling each sponsor organization to design and direct the interaction experience for their partners, customers and suppliers. Through simple drag and drop, business users can create new activities, easily defining the various tasks and approval steps required. This includes defining the dialogs that will be presented to the community members, where existing information can be confirmed or new data entered. Examples of activities include validating contact information, onboarding to a new service, answering questions and uploading documents to verify compliance with industry regulatory requirements.

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