The consumer collaboration community implementation and maintenance process and procedures provide an excellent model and challenge for a continuous improvement support model.  The consumer community requires flexibility and creativity to provide the type of community that will attract and then retain consumers.  The model that supports this and ensures engagement of the community members is the continuous improvement model.  It will be important for the success and ability to attain and maintain participation, retention and value for all members of this community that the community continuously improve to grow. 

This continuous improvement program will require the active participation of both the consumer and the retail team responsible for supporting and growing the community.  The management and coordination of the improvements will fall on the retailer community management and will require knowledge and coordination of the activities across the consumer community, the extended supply chain and the sales channels.  This continuous improvement require program management across multiple projects, programs and platforms to ensure that the objectives are not overlooked.  This is obviously no small task and will require the support and participation of all supporting platforms to effectively coordinate.  There are many stakeholders for this cross organization program and the coordination requires a strong focus on communication and coordination of the objectives. 

The participation from the consumer community coordination as it relates to the other platforms and functions will focus on the types of data that is and can be collected from the site membership.  The external focus of this community is the consumer participation and the consumer member objectives, while the internal focus of this community is the services required to support the membership demands and the data that can be collected for big data analysis by the internal platforms such as the sales channel and the extended supply chain.  The external services and ease of functionality provide the incentive for consumers to participate and the data collected provides the incentive for the internal partners and platforms to participate.

As with most other offerings and platforms the level of simplicity experienced by the participants of the covers a level surprising level of complexity and these services and continuous improvement program is no different.  The number of platforms and the different participants make this a very complex program that will require a high level of coordination.  If you do not provide the coordination and focus required to manage the cross platform initiatives you will not achieve the benefits.  Then, of course, if you do not achieve the benefits you will lose the support of leadership and it will only be a short time until the program collapses.  This will be a terrible shame because the value that can be achieved from the successful coordination is immense.

And now for the audience participation portion of the show…

ECommerce will have wide ranging impacts on both the retail and manufacturing sectors.  How can you focus these abilities to improve the consumer's experience?  Improving the consumer’s experience will require a re-evaluation of the sales channels, the manufacturing channels and practices and the supply chain channels and practices from the raw materials to the consumers’ homes.  In order to ensure and maintain success in this new reality you must harness the tools and capabilities in many new areas.  How can you support these continuously changing requirements?