Interview with Arvato Systems: B2B E-Commerce

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Question 5: What steps should be taken when introducing a B2B eCommerce platform?

In successful B2B eCommerce projects, business processes are not only digitized, they are also reevaluated with the needs of the customer in mind. It is important to know what customers expect from the company in the future. Companies that put themselves in the customer’s shoes and recognize future needs at an early stage will strengthen their own competitive position as well as that of their customers. ‘Design thinking’ is an innovative method that can help with this process. All internal and external stakeholders and opinion leaders must be involved in this process. Remember: A B2B eCommerce project is not a software project. It is largely an organizational project that encompasses virtually all areas of the company and all interaction with customers. Once the project scope, responsibilities, and budgets have been defined, it is useful to identify a business area/business process and map it to the new B2B eCommerce platform. It is often advisable to map processes close to the standard system and integrate them closely into the existing system network. At the same time, it is also necessary to improve the quality of master data and the presentation of key content because they are indispensable for digital business. The initial insights gained during this phase can be used to validate the requirements for subsequent phases and adjust the scope as part of an agile approach. This is followed by roll-out at the level of countries, product ranges, customer segments, and features.

The interview was conducted in writing with Dr. Angela Bischoff, Vice President at Arvato Systems, about B2B E-Commerce

Dr. Angela Bischoff is Vice President at Arvato Systems and is head of project business and product development for eCommerce in the regions of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the US.
After studying engineering mathematics at the Clausthal University of Technology and obtaining a doctorate at the Braunschweig University of Technology, Dr. Bischoff has designed architectures for comprehensive international projects (online store, customer service, logistics, finance) and managed these for different industries and customers since the first eCommerce wave in 2000.