Small Partner Automation

Achieve greater connectivity, collaboration, and visibility with all of your business partners

Services & Solutions > Capabilities > Supply Chain > Small Partner Automation

Small supply chain partners can bring big challenges.

Your supply chain includes a number of smaller business partners. You need them. You value them. They make a significant contribution to your organization. But you wish it took less time and energy to manage them.

Many of them are not technologically sophisticated. To conduct trade with them, you’re forced to deal with their slow, antiquated manual processes, which is a drain on your resources. Then there’s the frustration that comes from a lack of visibility into your transactions with them. The situation becomes particularly onerous when something goes awry, and you need to find out quickly where and how it went wrong.

Interestingly, this predicament with smaller partners is more common than you might think. A recent report by Incisiv revealed that 80% of smaller B2B partners drive 20% of the order volume in a typical enterprise. Yet 85% of enterprises in the US have not digitized their entire supply chain partner management process.1

This leads to issues such as:

Manual, error-prone processes – Many organizations have difficulty integrating small partner data with internal systems and may be using custom one-off portals or error-prone OCR solutions. Often, customers and suppliers send thousands of inbound PDFs and email invoices as attachments that must be manually uploaded into your digital processes.

Lack of effective collaboration – Without digitizing these processes, you face delays and challenges in working together.  And without the visibility and insights that come from digitized processes, it’s nearly impossible to collaborate effectively to drive improvements. 

Onboarding delays – While you have a dynamic, constantly evolving partner network, the process to onboard them is lengthy and unwieldy. In fact, many IT decision-makers say slow partner onboarding negatively impacts revenue opportunities.

We understand the challenges of communicating with smaller supply chain partners and the impact they have on your business. So we’ve worked with IBM to provide solutions that maximize the contribution of small B2B partners while minimizing the effort required to work with them.

Because Lightwell has helped companies improve their B2B and supply chain processes over the last two decades, we can help you do so quickly and effectively.

Connect more small business partners to streamline, automate, and accelerate

To succeed in today’s marketplace, you need to achieve digital integration with 100% of your business partners. And that includes partners large and small. Doing so will enable you to transact quickly and efficiently. What’s more, you need to be able to onboard new partners without delay, so you immediately realize the benefits of your relationship.

Now you can streamline processes and improve productivity with IBM Small Partner Automation solutions.

IBM has developed B2B partner automation solutions that enable you to digitally connect and collaborate with your small partners effectively. They’ll help you:

Achieve B2B integration

with 100% of your trading partners

Achieve greater visibility and control

over your end-to-end order-to-cash or procure-to-pay process 

Accelerate time-to-revenue and speed-to-market

by removing barriers to collaboration​

Maximize revenue opportunity

by removing bottlenecks in the value chain

Reduce cost

by eliminating intensive manual processes

Accelerate change management

without significant disruption

Reduce legal and compliance risk

by improving governance and reducing errors.

The benefits of automation can have a huge impact on your performance and bottom line. For example, some organizations report:

36%

average improvement in on-time delivery by automating supplier communications.*

90%

reduction in invoice errors due to partner management process automation.*

IBM Small Partner solutions help you achieve
complete B2B transaction automation.

As an IBM Platinum Business partner, we’ve helped thousands of companies leverage IBM solutions to optimize their supply chains. AI-powered solutions for the intelligent supply chain include:

cohesive pragmatic integrate

IBM Sterling Supply Chain Business Network

Connect with your business partners quickly and securely. Share real-time, accurate visibility with your entire retail supply chain. Leverage AI and blockchain technology to optimize processes and outcomes.

360 degree view

IBM Sterling Transaction Manager

Eliminate paper documents without requiring any process changes from your partners. Connect once, connect to model enables rapid deployment. This is particularly helpful with smaller business partners that have technological challenges.

IBM Sterling Document Conversion Services

Automate transactions with any supply chain partner, even if they’re using older manual processes. This solution translates non-structured documents like fax, email, and PDF into EDI or other electronic formats. Enhance visibility and governance over B2B processes.

ibm excellence award

Honored During Think 2020

IBM Sterling Business Partner of the Year

Connect more small business partners rapidly with automated processes.

To succeed in today’s marketplace, you need to achieve digital integration with 100% of your business partners. And that includes partners large and small. Doing so will enable you to transact quickly and efficiently. What’s more, you need to be able to onboard new partners without delay, so you immediately realize the benefits of your relationship.

Now you can streamline processes and improve productivity with IBM Small Partner Automation solutions.

IBM has developed B2B partner automation solutions that enable you to digitally connect and collaborate with your small partners effectively. They’ll help you:

  • Strengthen relationships by enhancing integration.
  • Reduce errors and help eliminate risk with greater visibility.
  • Transform technology to improve workflow.
  • Enhance usability for internal and external stakeholders.
  • Facilitate onboarding for partners of all sizes.
  • Improve data security with IBM dependability.
  • Boost your financial performance.
  • Achieve 100% B2B integration with partners that are currently limited by their technical challenges.
  • Give partners greater visibility and usability to help them become more productive and profitable as they do business with you.
  • Achieve visibility into the order to cash process that’s almost impossible with manual suppliers.
  • Raise awareness of potential supply chain disruptions and their possible impact.
  • Sunset error-prone and ineffective solutions like OCR or custom-built supplier portals.
  • Avoid costly ERP-based implementations of portals like SAP SRM/Ariba.
  • Eliminate the paper trail of faxed, emailed, and snail-mailed ship notices and PO acknowledgments.
  • Offer your internal LOB customers more automation options than traditional EDI.
  • Eliminate the “where’s my order” phone calls from external customers who want status or request receipt confirmations for POs and other documents.
  • Connect once, connect with all partners regardless of their size or technical ability.
  • Streamline the onboarding process to increase efficiency and better manage growth.
  • Track the progress of onboarding customers.
  • Improve revenue opportunities and accelerate ROI.
  • Ensure the security of the data exchanged with partners.
  • Build trust with suppliers and customers.
  • Accelerate ROI by onboarding new partners quickly.
  • Take advantage of early-pay discounts that are not currently realized due to extended time to process manual invoices.
  • Reduce costs and improve the efficiency of managing transactions.
Digital supply chain

IBM provides powerhouse B2B integration and supply chain solutions. Lightwell will help you make the most of them.

Our consultants have been helping small and large organizations adopt new technologies to improve their performance for over two decades. We’re experienced, passionate, and committed to maintaining collaborative relationships with our expanding client base throughout the world. 

We’re proud to be an IBM Platinum Business Partner whose outstanding performance was recognized with the 2020 award for IBM Sterling Business Partner of the Year.

As a result of working with us, you’ll gain extensive visibility and insights to empower your decision makers, improve supply chain performance, and optimize outcomes for your customers, company, and partners.

Comprehensive services and solutions for digital supply chains

IBM Sterling Supply Chain: This suite of industry-leading solutions provides critical capabilities for digitizing supply chains. This includes:

Application Development Solution IMplementation

Lightwell Supply Chain Services and Innovations: Our comprehensive, end-to-end services and innovations will help you accelerate, streamline, and optimize.  This includes:

Learn about supply chain solutions for your industry.

Many IBM Sterling Supply Chain solutions are specialized for the unique needs of various business sectors, ensuring that standards are met for privacy, security, and other important areas related to business transactions and transmissions:

Illuminating Resources​

Let’s Get Started

Interested in improving supply chain visibility and insights?

Contact us to discuss how we can help you advance your supply chain capabilities and create a strong foundation for the future.

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