The importance of cultivating a partner ecosystem

Significance of the IT “village” — leveraging a partner ecosystem for success

As the world rapidly digitises and becomes more complex, the challenges of sustainability, climate change, and energy transition are too big for any one business to tackle alone. New solutions are constantly appearing and being implemented to improve our ways of working. Not too long ago, we travelled to deposit paychecks, made purchases in person, and arrived at a physical office location to work each day. Technological advances have created innovative solutions that enable us to do most things from mobile apps and websites right at our fingertips. Today, innovation is everything.

While businesses would ideally source internally to develop modern solutions to meet its changing needs in an increasingly digital world, the phrase “it takes a village,” has never been more relevant. Collaboration is pivotal to achieve top-of-the-line service and keep up with the rapid change in the IT industry. That’s why forward-thinking organisations are increasingly looking to combine forces for innovation and co-creation, especially as the market moves to open, interoperable, digital, and simplified systems and business operations. The IT “village” is stronger together.

IDC research commissioned by Schneider Electric found that 67% of partners are currently collaborating, or considering collaborating with other partners to offer more complete solution and service offerings, and 64% of partners already co-create with vendor partners to develop new products and services.

Through an ecosystem method, companies can leverage innovation capacity, which Schneider Electric describes as a combination of skills, capabilities, and resources, to innovate and transform. The range of benefits provided by a partner ecosystem include:

  1. Increased access to diversified talent, education, and recruitment tools.
    In today’s competitive environment, talent gaps are hindering innovation and forcing companies across industries to rethink their recruitment and retention efforts. The demand for IT talent has made it challenging for businesses to find and retain top performers, creating a significant pain point in the “War for Talent.” However, a collaborative ecosystem can provide access to diverse perspectives and additional resources that can help drive innovation. As technology and business continue to intersect, cultivating talent with experience and skills in both areas will be crucial for creating successful ecosystems that drive innovation.
  1. The ability to anticipate uncertainty and navigate market volatility with widespread knowledge and expertise.
    According to the IDC research, more than half (61%) of partners believe that COVID-19 was a key driver for their customers’ choice to adopt digital solutions and embrace new technology. In Singapore, the pandemic accelerated the pace of digital transformation — with telecommuting, online food services, and virtual events now part of everyday life. By partnering with an ecosystem of players, companies across the globe can make themselves more resilient and prepared for the all-digital world. Further, with different partners in the IT “village” specialising in a number of niche areas, the result is a unique, high-impact, dependable solution that derives the highest possible level of value to customers, no matter what is happening in the world.
  2. Enhanced capability to deliver new and emerging technologies.
    Through an ecosystem, companies can implement new technology in ways that are too complicated or unmanageable on their own. Working together, organisations can create, deploy, execute, and operate improved information technology solutions. There is exponential value in building a village of partners across the ecosystem that is much greater than the sum of its parts. 

For most companies in the IT industry, operating alone simply isn’t feasible or worth the overwhelming cost. To avoid burning out employees by attempting to do it all, companies need to accept that collaborating with external partners can make just as significant of an impact on their business as internal teamwork. Not only does cultivating your own IT “village” ease the burden placed on employees to overwork, it also protects your business from the unknown of the future by forming key relationships with other players to create a wider span of expertise and resources. 

Last, but certainly not least, the importance of the ability to formulate, distribute, and execute innovative technologies faster and more effectively than before cannot be understated. Customers won’t wait for companies to catch up. Thus, now is the time to begin or continue in the journey to a comprehensive partner ecosystem to provide your business with the collaborative ecosystem it needs to be successful.