In the last 5 years, the use of strategic alliances to grow and reinforce organizations has grown significantly.
UN economists forecast global growth to slow significantly to 1.9% in 2023, and organizations will need to be even more innovative to grow.
Alliances have an important role to play. 53% of organizations surveyed by Vantage Partners in its 2022 State of Alliance Management report state they expect that partnerships (without competitive overlap) and coopetition to drive this growth over the next 5 years.
In the same report, respondents expect that the number of multilateral alliances at their organization will increase over the next 5 years.
C-Suite and alliance management functions expect reliance on partnerships to increase. So, too, will the complexities and the multi-layered approach to innovation within these partnerships.
With this greater reliance, and higher expectations, what can alliance professionals do to simplify their day-to-day operations to maximize value, increase revenue and grow influence on the C-Suite?
1. Digitize operations
If you haven’t already digitized your alliance management operations, now more than ever is the time to do this.
SharePoint may hold some documents and Teams may hold a timeline, but sharing of up-to-date alliance information across initiatives or programs has historically been managed through PDFs of internal reports that were prepared manually and approved for partner consumption.
Fully digitizing alliance management with a purpose-built platform will allow you to host a dynamic version of the alliance’s entire operational plan (milestones, deliverables, risks, events, obligations, contracts, payments, etc.).
The result: both partners always see the same version of the truth without manual compilation, distribution, and version management.
2. Streamline processes
Having the right processes in place gives you the ability to simplify project requirements and manage a greater number of alliances and initiatives more efficiently.
Consistent and transparent alliance practices and processes, combined with agility and flexibility supports clear and insightful decisions.
A digitized alliance function should benefit from a central system of record, providing all partners and stakeholders with a single, accurate and up-to-date version of the truth.
Alliance management processes can be further reinforced with best practice and standardized processes implemented through templates, workflows and automations, all customized and adapted to each alliance or initiative.
3. Manage risks
Alliance management risks can be simplified without losing control and oversight, using digitized processes, and collaborating with partners to share risks. These can be shared both in terms of responsibility and consequence.
Strategic alliances are long-term in nature, and risks appear and disappear constantly.
For this reason, it is important that each risk has a review date and that strategic alliance leaders conduct comprehensive risk reviews periodically.
Alliance managers can keep risk assessments simple by focusing on the main risks only, giving them a classification and ensuring that all stakeholders are aware to prevent knock on effects to other decisions and timelines associated with the partnership.
As companies continue to rely on alliances for growth, alliance management becomes an ever more essential, strategic function, practice and discipline within organizations.
Using technology to simplify how alliance management is done is a great way to future-proof your growth.
For more information about allianceboard, or to book a demo, please contact us here.