Feeling stretched? This article provides insights on how alliance managers can achieve better results with less resources.
Increasingly, businesses are using their alliance portfolio to underpin their corporate strategy. They want the alliance portfolio to drive innovation and growth, which means alliance management teams must support larger and more diverse sets of partners, initiatives, and stakeholders.
To meet these growing demands, heads of alliance management need to carefully consider which processes, tools and resources will support their team to scale efficiently.
Historically, alliance management teams have used adhoc mechanisms like spreadsheets and SharePoint sites. These tools fail to adequately support alliance management teams and result in greater risk, higher costs and underperformance.
In this article, we review how allianceboard, a purpose-built digital alliance management platform, enables alliance management teams to stay on top of it all, show organizational impact and easily collaborate with partners for innovation and growth.
Here are three ways allianceboard helps to streamline and upscale alliance operations.
1. Store alliance information on one central platform with a global dashboard
Having one central system of record is a key reason why organizations move to a digital platform. Eliminating the “one-alliance one-spreadsheet” culture and all its associated problems is a no-brainer.
With allianceboard, you have one version of the truth – not only for individual alliances, but also across your entire portfolio. All your documents, contacts, events, goals, decisions, deliverables, risks, payments, roles and responsibilities and other key information is at your fingertips. allianceboard facilitates clear communication via a central hub and tracks the evolution of your alliances, making recordkeeping and auditing a breeze.
For example, allianceboard’s governance committee function allows members to conveniently track all information, events, documents and decisions directly within their command.
Figure 1 shows an example of allianceboard’s one-click reporting functionality and automated dashboard. This significantly reduces preparation time, brings clarity, and supports the committees’ efficiency. It also ensures you have a complete historical record of activities and decisions.
2. Implementing best practices and processes across alliances and teams
The key to ensuring efficiency and continuous improvement is systems. Consistent and transparent practices and processes combined with a dose of agility and flexibility support your alliance team to make clear and insightful decisions.
allianceboard is designed to empower alliance management teams to implement best practices and processes through templates, workflows and automations that can be customized and adapted to each alliance. For instance, in collaboration with the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP), allianceboard provides ASAP resources and starting points for activities such as launching new alliances, evaluating new partners or ongoing relationships. You can also build your own library of templates to suit your business.
Another example is the ability to automate key processes such as setting key milestones, deliverables, events, and other actions that routinely happen when launching or terminating alliances.
Figure 2 shows an example of a health check conducted through allianceboard’s evaluation function.
3. Providing more value to more stakeholders and gaining broader recognition
Having the right systems in place gives you the ability to manage more alliances more efficiently. This is made possible through empowering features such as smart automation, one-click reporting, automated dashboard as well as seamless partner collaboration through our secure platform.
Focused reports and dashboard provide timely insights and can quickly be defined for each set of stakeholders so they can self-service or receive reports through email. Automated notifications also enable efficient follow-ups and reminders, ensuring everyone has the latest information.
This increased efficiency, transparency and visibility in turn generates more engagement from the C-suite and other stakeholders as well as broader recognition of the alliance management team. Figure 3 shows an automatically generated calendar for all alliances related to a specific business unit.
Taking the first steps
Whether you manage a few alliances or a large portfolio, moving to a digital alliance management platform will enable you to optimize and automate your alliance management activities so that you can focus more time and resources on high-impact initiatives and scale efficiently.
allianceboard clients ranging from growing small and medium-size businesses to Fortune 500 companies have successfully streamlined and scaled their alliance operations. And it is easy to get started. Most clients are fully operational within a few weeks and start reaping the benefits.