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Equifax Walks the ASAP Awards Ceremony Red Carpet for an Unusual Alliance Management Program in the Consumer Credit Reporting Business

Posted By Cynthia B. Hanson, Friday, April 28, 2017
Updated: Thursday, April 27, 2017

It’s an opportunity for new perspective on the role of alliance management when an ASAP member forges untrodden turf. That’s what happened with Equifax, Inc., at this year’s annual Alliance Excellence Awards that took place at the 2017 ASAP Global Alliance Summit, “Profit, Innovation, and Value for the Part­nering Enterprise,” Feb. 28–March 2, at the San Diego Marriott Mission Valley, San Diego, California. The US consumer credit reporting agency was presented the Alliance Program Excellence Award for its exemplary partnering program in an industry where partnerships and alliance business models are still emerging. The company exceeded expectations with its scalable practices, tools, and methodologies to support successful formation and management of alliance portfolios over time. The program is applicable for multiple alliances, is repeatable, and has led to consistent multi-alliance performance.

The Alliance Program Excellence Award is presented to a single, specific company and its partnering capability, not an alliance. Winners build programs on efficiency, creativity, and an integrated suite of tools, processes, professional development/alliance professional certification, and other elements. I spoke with Joy Wilder Lybeer, senior vice president, enterprise alliances and insurance, about the changes that have occurred as Equifax, Inc. integrated the progressive program into the company structure.

What prompted you to look into partnering in an industry where you don’t see it often?
Equifax is well over 100 years old with a rich history and great success as a traditionaland perhaps some may have said“stodgy old credit reporting agency.” Today, Equifax finds itself right in the middle of the fin-tech industry, and of course, data management is one of our key competencies that will only become more significant to our business. One of our company’s core values is growth through innovation, and we recognize that partnering is vitally important to this value. The most successful companies realize that innovation is at its best when companies are open to great ideas regardless of the source, and are able to come together with others and identify points of joint value where respective capabilities form the perfect puzzle that drives new value for a particular industry or customer segment.

In what areas has the partnering program impacted Equifax to improve efficiency, revenues, innovation, etc.?
Partnering with others to extend distribution, connectivity, and innovation are the core components of alliance management at Equifax.

How has the program improved innovation?
When we come together with other firms for the purpose of innovation, we are able to leverage the partners’ intimacy with the end user and their core capabilities that we may not share. For example, by combining the data assets of our firm with another, along with the analytic capabilities and brand of a third firm, we created a new insight that helps lenders extend credit to more consumers due to the use of alternative data.

How has the program improved distribution?
Many of our partners distribute Equifax solutions, data, and insights on our behalf.  We are able to leverage the sales forces and distribution mechanisms of others in a very efficient way.

How has the program influenced the organizational culture?
The culture of Equifax is evolving to appreciate the benefits of working with and through third parties to accelerate innovation and growth. Working with a third party is now seen as a viable mechanism of growth, not a last resort.

What is your relationship with ASAP?

We are relatively new members of ASAP.  Three ASAP membersVantage Partners, Alliancesphere, and The Rhythm of Businessare three experts in this space who have been integral to shepherding our journey.

Tags:  allainces  consumer reporting  enterprise alliances  Equifax  Joy Wilder Lybeer  key competencies  partnering  partnering programs  partners 

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Exemplary Alliance Management Practices Receive Accolades and Honors at ASAP’s 2017 Alliance Excellence Awards Ceremony

Posted By Cynthia B. Hanson, Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The ASAP Alliance Excellence Awards ceremony is a much-awaited event at the annual ASAP Global Alliance Summit, and the 2017 gathering was no exception this year at “Profit, Innovation, and Value for the Part­nering Enterprise,” Feb. 28–March 2, at the San Diego Marriott Mission Valley, San Diego, Calif. USA. Awards were presented in four categories: Individual Alliance Excellence, Innovative Best Alliance Practice, Alliance Program Excellence, and Alliance for Corporate Social Responsibility. Two ASAP Chapter awards were also presented for Excellence in Chapter Innovation and Excellence in Chapter Programs.

 

 “It’s an important part of what we do, and this community should celebrate its successes in the alliance world,” said Michael Leonetti, president & CEO of ASAP, when introducing the finalists.

 

“Every year we get better and better nominations. This year was a really tough judging process,” explains Norma Watenpaugh, CSAP, chair of the 2017 Alliance Excellence Awards committee and founder/CEO of Phoenix Consulting Group, when discussing the selections. A member of the awards committee for 14 years, Watenpaugh led the committee through this year’s selection process.

 

Over the years, “we’ve seen the adoption of best practices, and the quality of alliance management has steadily improved and is reflected in the nominations and submissions we have seen. This year in particular, many of the nominations and key award winners looked at alliances as going beyond simple company-to-company connections. They are networks of stakeholders, customers, industry colleagues, and other industry players. It has become a very complex network of alliances, which is how alliances are evolving. They are becoming more ecosystem-centric.”

 

Of significance this year were the three strong finalists in the corporate responsibility category, whereas last year there were none. “It’s always great to see the contributions companies are making to make the world a better place,” says Watenpaugh.

 

The Individual Alliance Excellence Award is given to a company that has instituted practices, tools, and methodologies in support of successful formation and management for a single alliance. The alliance may be an emerging alliance or comprised of two or more companies. The winner is Loonaangifteketen-UWV-CBS-Belastingdienst. After this partnership of three government agencies began applying alliance management best practices, it became highly effective in the management of tax revenues in The Netherlands. Belastingdienst (Dutch IRA), UWV (Dutch National Social Security Administration), and CBS (Statistics Netherlands) applied a governance model that emphasized cross-agency collaboration versus agency competition. It resulted in a collaboration that generates 60 percent of the Dutch government’s revenue in an easy-to-use system for pensions and social security benefits. The alliance lowered costs while increasing convenience to the citizenry with 96 percent accuracy. The incorporation of ecosystem thinking helped the collaboration maintain a focus on important initiatives while building relationships across the separate departments.

 

The Innovative Best Alliance Practice Award highlights the use of new, individual alliance management tools or processes that have an immediate and powerful impact on the organization and/or discipline of alliance management. The tools or processes are additions to existing portfolios that address specific elements of alliance management, such as measurement, training, conflict resolution, general communication across the partner ecosystem, or similar facets of the discipline. The winner is NetApp. While many companies still try to manage partnering processes through spreadsheets, NetApp has invested in technology and governance of its rigorous alliance co-selling program to ensure trackable processes that produce results. The processes engage NetApp and partner representatives proactively in account mapping, account planning, and pipeline management with exemplary execution of the most difficult aspects of go-to-market alliances. They also provide detailed reports on joint co-selling activities. The company is being recognized for the dedicated resources and governance invested in the change.

 

The Alliance Program Excellence Award is presented to a single, specific company and its partnering capability, not an alliance. The company exceeds expectations with its scalable practices, tools, and methodologies to support successful formation and management of alliance portfolios over time. They are able to be applied to multiple alliances, as needed, are repeatable, and have led to consistent alliance performance across multiple alliances. Winners build programs on efficiency, creativity, and an integrated suite of tools, processes, professional development/alliance professional certification, and other elements. The winner is Equifax. In an industry where partnerships and alliances as a business model are in the beginning stages, Equifax has created internal governance structures that enable management across a highly matrixed enterprise. The program resulted in significant growth in 2015 and 2016, access to new markets, innovation, cost savings by eliminated legal expenses associated with partner disputes, and a change in culture. Equifax now views partnering as critical to success versus a resource of last resort.

 

The Alliances for Corporate Social Responsibility Award is for partnerships that make a profound, measurable, and positive social impact. The principal objective of the alliance is social impact, not profit—although profit, especially if used to fund program expansion, is not discouraged. The winner is The Synergist-Sanofi. This multiparty alliance comprised of the general public, government and health agencies, industry, and academics and healthcare professionals aims to co-creating solutions to “Break Dengue.” The ecosystem platform, information sharing, and crowd sourcing, with over 1200 member and 2200 Twitter followers, incorporates online chat, worldwide tracking of cases, and toolkits for the public that reduce the risk of infection. The Synergist framework and governance facilitates a neutral platform that encourages participation and enables partners to overcome structural or perceived ethical barriers to collaboration. The platform can be used for other diseases, such as Zika.

 

Two ASAP chapters also received awards. The Excellence in Chapter Innovation award was presented to the RTP Chapter with honorable mention for the Silicon Valley Chapter; the Excellence in Chapter Programs award was presented to the ASAP New England Chapter.

 

See the official ASAP press release announcing the winners at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/03/prweb14113139.htm.

Tags:  alliance  alliance management  alliance professional certification  Belastingdienst  best practices  Break Dengue  CBS  Equifax  governance  Loonaangifteketen  NetApp  Sanofi  The Synergist  UWV 

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ASAP Selects 10 Alliance Excellence Awards Finalists for 2017

Posted By John W. DeWitt and Cynthia Hansen, Thursday, January 19, 2017

Every year, ASAP highlights outstanding member accomplishments at the Global Alliance Summit. This year, 10 nominees will be competing in four categories for the Alliance Excellence Awards: Individual Alliance Excellence, Innovative Best Alliance Practice, Alliance Program Excellence, and Alliance for Corporate Social Responsibility.

“These companies have proven track records demonstrating significant leadership value in alliance management,” said Michael Leonetti, president & CEO of ASAP. “Our awards committee reviewed a number of outstanding nominees this year from a range of industries. We selected candidates that were going above and beyond in their practices and can serve as models for the ASAP community. They hail from industries such as consumer credit reporting, audit, tax, and advisory services, IT, utilities, healthcare, consulting, and biopharma, and the projects span the globe, including the Kruger National Park in South Africa,” he added.  

“I especially appreciate the submissions for Social Corporate Responsibility,” added Norma Watenpaugh, CSAP, chair of the 2017 Alliance Excellence Awards committee and founder/CEO of Phoenix Consulting Group. “We had three worthy finalists for that category this year. It’s always great to see the contributions companies are making to make the world a better place.”

Past winners received awards for significant contributions through partnering that increased revenues, provided society with creative business models and problem solving, enhanced products/services/technologies, advanced the profession, etc. Additional value is placed on leadership practices that result in high levels of productivity, effort, achievement, and innovation. Past winners share three key achievements:

  • Creativity and out-of-the-box thinking that has evolved the art and science of alliance management
  • Compelling and measurable results
  • General persistence in overcoming obstacles

 Individual Alliance Excellence Award

The Individual Alliance Excellence Award is given to a partnership that has instituted practices, tools, and methodologies in support of successful formation and management for a single alliance. The alliance may be an emerging alliance or comprised of two or more companies. The three finalists are:

Bayer-Evotec: This strategic research alliance hopes to identify three small molecule clinical candidates for the treatment of endometriosis. Bayer and Evotec have joint responsibility in early research and preclinical characterization of potential candidates, with Bayer responsible for subsequent clinical development and commercialization. To date the alliance team has delivered five preclinical candidates, exceeding the initial goals of the collaboration.

Loonaangifteketen-UWV-CBS- Belastingdienst: After a disastrous start, this unique partnership of three government agencies managing tax revenues in The Netherlands—Belastingdienst (Dutch IRA), UWV (Dutch National Social Security Administration), and CBS (Statistics Netherlands)—became highly effective by applying alliance management best practices, such as development of governance, trust building, and extensive attention to team meetings.

National Grid-EnergySage: The alliance provides a marketplace for solar energy to Rhode Island residents by leveraging existing programs that provide an energy efficiency assessment with a solar assessment. The multi-level value creation is designed to meet the state’s carbon reduction goals and create jobs in alternative energy, while providing a one-stop website for all services, and where dozens of local solar installers provide quotes and choices.

Innovative Best Alliance Practice Award

This year’s Innovative Best Alliance Practice Award will be presented to one of two companies for the use of new alliance management tools or processes that have an immediate and powerful impact on the organization and/or discipline of alliance management. The tools or processes are additions to existing practices that address specific elements of alliance management, such as measurement, training, conflict resolution, general communication across the partner ecosystem, or similar facets of the discipline. The two finalists are:

KPMG-UK: This KPMG-powered enterprise branding combines the company’s knowledge of back-office transformation with leading cloud technology providers, such as Oracle, Workday, ServiceNow, and Coupa. The innovation in branding and bundling technology helps accountants easily grasp the business value and significantly increase the win rate in competitive situations.

NetApp: While many companies still try to manage partnering processes through spreadsheets, NetApp has invested in technology and governance of its rigorous alliance co-selling program to ensure trackable processes that produce results. The processes engage NetApp and partner representatives proactively in account mapping, account planning, and pipeline management with exemplary execution of the most difficult aspects of go-to-market alliances. 

Alliance Program Excellence Award

The Alliance Program Excellence Award is presented to a single, specific company and its partnering program, not to an alliance. The company exceeds expectations with scalable practices, tools, and methodologies to support successful formation and management of alliance portfolios over time. They are repeatable and have led to consistent alliance performance across multiple alliances. Winners build programs on efficiency, creativity, and an integrated suite of tools, processes, professional development/alliance professional certification, and other elements. The two finalists are:

Equifax: Equifax has built an exemplary partnering program in an industry where partnership and alliance business models are still at the budding stages. Internal governance structures enabled management across a highly matrixed enterprise and impacted results on multiple levels, such as revenue, the ability to enter new markets, the launch of new products, and changes to organizational culture.

STC Solutions: This highly innovative, consolidated, and centralized alliance and partnership management framework spans different divisions and functional groups throughout the organization and business relationshipsfrom supply side to customer side. The framework develops and promotes an extremely effective corporate-wide collaborative culture that includes supplier, tactical alliances, technology partners, cloud/IoT channel partners, and strategic alliances.

Alliances for Corporate Social Responsibility Award

The Alliances for Corporate Social Responsibility Award is for partnerships making a profound, measurable, and positive social impact. The principal objective of the alliance is social impact, not profit—although profit, especially if used to fund program expansion, is not discouraged. The three partnering finalists are:

Bayer and Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi): The focus of this alliance is to develop a drug to dramatically reduce treatment time and increase effectiveness for River Blindness, a disease affecting 25 million people in 31 African countries. Current treatments only affect young worms and must be repeated to target adult worms over their 17-year lifespan. Bayer has contracted with non-profit DNDi to provide the new drug at an affordable price for national disease control programs.

Dimension Data and Cisco Systems, Inc.: South Africa is home to 70 percent of the remaining rhinos in the world. Cisco Systems and Dimension Data collaborated in the Connected Conservation initiative to apply Internet of Things (IoT) solutions to prevent and reduce the number of rhinos being poached in South Africa’s Kruger National Park. The alliance developed new technology for tracking rhinos without needing to tranquilize them, which can be extremely dangerous to the animals. The technology also creates tight physical security within the preserve to track staff, suppliers, contractors, security, and visitors. The technology and alliance can be replicated to conserve other endangered species.       

The Synergist-Sanofi: This multiparty alliance incorporates an ecosystem approach to address Dengue fever that includes the general public, government and health agencies, industry, academics, and healthcare professionals aimed at co-creating solutions. “Break Dengue” uses information sharing and crowd sourcing through social media, online chats, case tracking worldwide, and public access to toolkits that reduce risk of infection. The Synergist framework and innovative governance structure provides a systematic approach to manage a diverse ecosystem. The platform is extendible to other diseases, such as Zika.  

Tags:  alliance  ASAP Alliance Excellence Awards  Bayer  Belastingdienst  CBS  Cisco Systems  Dimension Data  DNDi  ecosystem  EnergySage  Equifax  Evotec  IoT  KPMG-UK  Loonaangifteketen  National Grid  NetApp  partnership management  Sanofi  STC Solutions  The Synergist  UWV 

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