A robust continuous improvement program that includes all external collaboration partners will support the growth and maintenance of your collaborative partnerships.  The collaboration framework provides a guide to encourage participation and the continuous analysis of methods to improve the collaboration across business partners and especially external customers.  The continuous improvement methodology encourages methods and processes that can be streamlined and focused on the collaboration network and provide a structured means means to monitor progress, identify improvements, implement those improvements and then monitor the results to identify additional improvements. 


A strong collaboration network requires a method to monitor the collaboration network and the objectives of the collaboration partners to identify improvements that will provide additional value to the partners and maintain the interest of the partners.  The collaborative network requires a process and a method to delivery improvements to the network in order to maintain and grow the interest of the collaboration partners.  The continuous monitoring and improvement process provides a clear roadmap for the partners to follow that will maximize the satisfaction and the success of the collaborative partnership. 


Without a strong process to monitor and then broadcast the results of the collaborative improvements the partners will tend to lose interest in the partnerships.  All of the partners must understand the direction and objectives of the partnership and the continuous monitoring and improvement process supports the communication required to encourage their participation in the partnership.  Clear and concise communication among partners is a very important ingredient to the continued success of the partnership. 


In addition to the delivery and the communication of objectives the continuous monitoring and improvement process provides a method to refine both objectives and delivery methods for the objectives based on actual results.  Partners will begin the relationship based on the promise of improvements however they will require delivery of the objectives along with the benefits from those objectives in order to maintain and grow the collaborative partnership.  This cannot be achieved without a robust continuous monitoring and improvement program. 


The continuous improvement methodology of monitoring, identification of improvements and then implementation of the improvements provides the best method to support and maintain collaborative partnerships.  The partners will not stand still to progress and will quickly lose interest in the partnerships that do not produce a continuous stream of benefits to the partners that will maintain interest and encourage participation in the partnership.  There are too many distractions for businesses from day to day requirements and problems to assume that the the partners will continue participation in the collaborative partnership without a means to encourage the participation.  This process supports a method to clearly promote and demonstrate the benefits of participation while providing a means to delivery new improvements.     


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?