Enterprise Collaboration

Impact of Enterprise Collaboration on Productivity of Intangible Assets

Business case for speeding acquisitions and divestitures, value-chain innovations, enhanced customer value, and strategic sourcing of indirect spend with enterprise collaboration platforms (40 pages)


This paper provides an ROI payback model for business metrics, process automation benchmarks, and service-delivery requirements for coordinating the work of subject matter experts throughout the enterprise and among trusted partners of supply chains, distribution networks, and customer organizations

This paper examines a pernicious challenge for management: how to increase productivity of intangible assets. The figure below depicts our case — enterprise collaboration speeds long-term value drivers:

  • Acquisitions and divestitures that entail complex negotiations, sharing of documentation, and compliance with regulatory requirements for detailed reporting.
  • Value-chain innovation that emphasizes new product research, close collaboration with suppliers, and sharing hundreds of documents and images.
  • Enhanced customer value that relies on extensive collaboration and information sharing with customers.
  • Strategic sourcing that brings competitive bidding and standardized detail reporting to historically “dark” or rogue procurement in the technical services or marketing communications supply chain.

We show how the higher productivity of knowledge workers that contribute to these value drivers speeds the value creation process of the enterprise.

GISTICS’ research of best practice among early adopter and mainstream users of collaboration technology reveals significant economic gains:

  • Dramatic reduction of time delays and missed handoffs among geographically disperse teams—“improved communications and process management.”
  • Corresponding acceleration of project cycle times—“deals done faster.”
  • Revenue enhancements from faster time to market and fewer mistakes—“extra selling days freed up by process-completion efficiencies.”
  • Higher quality team outputs that result from reuse of best-practice templates and processes—“governance of practices and focus on business results.”

GISTICS’ activity-based research correlates these economic gains to the following factors:

  • Rapid formation of communities of best practice around each strategic, long-term value driver.
  • Secure integration of networks of experts with distinct phases of a project lifecycle.
  • Low total lifecycle costs for the provisioning of collaboration services to project teams.
  • Federated reporting and rollups from all provisioned collaboration teams and practices.

This paper supports these conclusions with detailed activity-based payback models, detailing labor and cost savings, cycle-time gains, and revenue enhancements from four payback scenarios:

  • Merger acquisition of a manufacturing operation, providing a source of $32.5 million in new revenue.
  • Development of a new automotive transmission, saving $8.9M in costs and resulting in incremental revenue from cycle-time gains of $49.2 million.
  • Collaborative solutioneering of an architectural and engineering firm, generating $4.7 million in savings and $4.1 million in additional revenue.
  • Global product launch for a consumer packaged goods firm, saving $15.2 million in hard and soft dollars costs and creating $35.6 million in new revenues that result from faster time to market.


Increasing the productivity of intangible assets of the enterprise starts with better reporting for the enterprise’s strategic, long-term value drivers.

In practical terms, this means standardized reporting processes, enterprise-wide rollups of project activities and results, and uniform activity data.


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