What’s Holding Back Companies from Implementing Collaborative Commerce?


Taking part in the Collaborative Commerce can benefit many companies. It can be a primary means of communication with their partners, suppliers and customers. By using it, they can save money on transaction costs and traveling costs. The loyalty of their customers can also be increased as they become an essential part of the collaboration as well. However, there are obstacles that get in the way of implementing collaborative commerce. There are concerns with security issues, infrastructure, cultural barriers and imprecise standards.

Security issues

One of the major reasons that hold back companies, security issues hinder data sharing among partners. They fail to realize that restraining sensitive information could be a competitive edge for their rivals. Appterra provides security by giving companies control over the type of data they want to share. It also offers varying degrees of security as required by every collaborative partnership


Concerns with the infrastructure usually happen when legacy systems operating in the back offices of partners are incompatible. As a response, Appterra designs software with interface capabilities. This allows us to surmount the problem easily by finding, extracting, and translating business data from various systems.

Cultural Barriers

When using collaborative design solutions, companies generally encounter problems with cultural barriers. Conflicts often arise between the purchasing and engineering department. To avoid heated communication between these two, the purchasing department should step aside and let collaboration continue its pace. Ideally, the departments should find a common ground – the best course of action for customers.

Imprecise Standards

Companies often engage in collaborative commerce to establish standards in semantics, data, nomenclature and the actual process of information exchange itself. Appterra is further developed to fully comply and implement specific standards.

Once you realize that these issues should not be a hindrance to your company’s success, start small and gradually build on your business. If all goes well, you can expand the adoption. However, you must understand what you really want to achieve against what was only promised. Participate in collaborative commerce now and come out as a winner in the supply chain.

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Charlie Alsmiller

Throughout his career, Charlie Alsmiller has focused on customer problems in difficult industries such as Energy and Telecommunications. Prior to starting Appterra in 2005, Alsmiller was VP of Global Operations for Allegro Development, a leading provider of software for the energy sector. He has also served as president of OmniSpace Technologies, a leading SaaS provider that he founded in 1999. He spent over 10 years in the consulting world with Price Waterhouse and Deloitte Consulting, where he participated in a wide variety of projects for very high profile clients. Mr. Alsmiller holds a BBA from Baylor University in Management and Information Systems and a MBA from the University of Dallas in International Business. Specialties: Technology ventures, Enterprise Software, Contract Negotiation, International Operations, Private Equity, Product Management, Strategic Alliances, Software Implementation, Software Development

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