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Thursday, September 29, 2005

Standardisation, Innovation & On Demand World

The culture of standards that the Internet brought to the IT industry reversing the earlier trend wherein technology companies competed with each other to try to establish control points with their proprietary interfaces and protocols. The power of interconnections became exemplified with the rise of the internet ecosystem. The fear of commoditization in the internet world due to common standards may be misplaced writes Irving Wladawsky-Berger. Standards can turn other businesses into successful innovators, who will leverage those standards to quickly and efficiently create differentiated offerings.Microsoft is an exception however. No wonder it invites lot more criticisms. Far from just commoditizing what businesses and individuals do, a standards-based Internet is unleashing vastly more customization and individuality. In an age of business process revolution enabled by technology business gets empowered to acoomplishing far reaching benefits to the society. With standardization the huge inefficiencies involved in re-inventing the same process over and over again can be minimized/eliminated unlocking energies to innovating around those processes and business models that bring true differentiation and value to the business.
A truly innovative business can leverage the availability of increasingly standardized, low priced technologies and services to create a special and unique experience for everyone in the business, including all stakeholders - employees, dealers, partners, and most important, customers. As the Internet proved to be a highly democratic platform available to lots and lots of people, the availability of standard business processes in a competitive marketplace means that small and mid-size businesses can have access to many of the same advanced technologies and capabilities once available only to large companies, thus helping them better compete with those companies. The criterion for success won't be size or established position, but how capable you are of doing something truly special and innovative. Becoming an On Demand Business - extending the processes across the business value net, becoming more responsive and flexible - leaves business in a position to focus its talents and resources collaboratively on the real creation of new value.Standardization while not giving any competitive advantage, but can unlock otherwise involved efforts to be spent on more value added efforts.

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