Survey Makes Pro-Integration Connection

Compiled By Tonya Vinas A recent survey by consulting and systems integration firm NerveWire Inc., Newton, Mass., shows a correlation between integration with external partners and positive business impact. However, a small number of surveyed companies consider themselves to be highly integrated. The study was conducted between January and March 2002 by IntelliVen and queried 162 IT and other "business professionals" working in a broad range of North American industries. Half of the firms had revenues in excess of $250 million. According to NerveWire, the study shows:

  • The most tightly integrated companies generated an average 40% increase in revenues, 30% reduction in costs and 35% increase in customer retention rates via their integration efforts.
  • Only 14% of companies surveyed consider themselves tightly integrated with trading partners in new-product development, manufacturing/operations, customer acquisition and retention and order fulfillment/service delivery.
Companies said in terms of obstacles to integration, the hurdle they had the least success in overcoming was distrust in sharing proprietary information with other companies. In fact, most companies are using online viewing and electronic exchange of information but have a limited ability for partners to link to each other's business processes or change information in each other's databases. While "high-tech" manufacturing reported high-levels of integration, according to NerveWire, "industrial manufacturing" reported low levels.
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