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Is a private online platform something for my business too?

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A digital solution for achieving your entrepreneurial goals is not a strange thought. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs don’t think about it enough (yet). The day to day business usually eats up most of their time. But if you don’t think about it, then someone else (your competitor) will do so. Because it’s digital, you have tons of opportunities to become more service-oriented and to increase engagement and loyalty of your customers. In this blog article I’m going to focus on the opportunities you can create with a private online platform.

What is a private online platform?

First, let me tell you what a private online platform is and what it’s not. A private online platform is not a marketplace or a webshop where everything revolves around selling online products. For me, a private online platform is a safe working environment in which you work together with customers, suppliers and partners. A central place where you acquire and/or share your own knowledge about certain subjects. It’s also a place where you edit, structure and share information in accordance with laws and regulations. If you set up a platform like this properly, then you can truly offer value. It’s also relatively easy to make money with it.

 

Computerizing your netwerk

At BCT, we help organizations build such a private online platform. We do this on the basis of our cloud-based technological platform Elemenz. Of course, everything always starts with a thought out idea. We also think about this together with you. What opportunities do you see for a new online business model? For example, can you post information about an issue online? And give your chain partners access, so that they can do something with that information from their own role in a certain process? For example, viewing current data, adding or uploading your own input or exchanging experiences.

Example: Purchasing 

Let’s take a look at the purchasing process within an organization. Both your suppliers and your own buyers spend lots of time exchanging data about purchasing questions. You can bring these information flows together on a private online platform and you would make a significant efficiency gain in terms of time and costs. Moreover, with our Elemenz platform you’ll have an infrastructure that’s flexible and scalable. You can easily let the platform not only grow together with the number of users, but also with the wishes of those users, because various functionalities are available within Elemenz.

 

Compliance and governance

When creating a closed online platform, it is important to focus on compliance and governance. Within Elemenz we have included various functionalities so you’ll be able to do so. Our platform helps you to manage and control your organization in a responsible manner. Our platform also helps you to bundle, classify and link information to important standards. This way you always work in accordance with laws and regulations.

Example: Asset management

Legal requirements and quality standards apply to the maintenance of buildings and installations. The boiler needs periodic maintenance. The fire doors need to be tested on a regular basis. But when was the last time that actually happened? And what were the findings then? As a building owner, you constantly want to have an up-to-date status of your buildings. As a specialist in asset management, you want to be able to offer your customers these insights. A private online platform can help you to do so.

Consider the following: you build a platform and make it available to your customers in return for a fee: the building owners. On the platform, they can navigate through their assets and they can see to what extent their buildings meet quality and legal standards. With this information, they can determine which necessary actions to take. Suppliers to the building owners can also access the platform and add information themselves, after an inspection, for example. A platform like this can start small, but can be scaled up perfectly to an industry-wide standard.

The great thing about this: you build your own online platform and allow others to use it. You join forces together and a single infrastructure is built that adds value to all participants

 

Reason from your customer 

If you are curious about what a private online platform can do for your company, then first ask your customer what he or she needs. What does your customer specifically need? And what do you have to offer your customer, with which you can live up to and even exceed the expectations of your customer? Next, you need to research what your network can mean to your customers. This allows you to create a complete online platform step by step.

Written by: Winkeun Man (Business manager Elemenz)