Traditional trade formats are outdated - slow, unresponsive, uncoordinated and opaque.
Silos are no longer sustainable. No business is an island. Fates of businesses are increasingly interlinked.
Businesses operate and compete as chains and networks (not as standalone companies)
10 PLATFORM IMPERATIVES TO ADDRESS B2B COMPLEXITIES
Always-in-sync - Orchestrated ecosystem with unified processes
Business Agility - Instant triggers for rapid response
Availability - Live 24x365 - Live round-the-clock to capture events as they happen
Anytime Anywhere - Live availability to anyone with anytime anywhere access - via any device.
Operate simultaneously - Enables trade partners and chains to act in tandem on a parallel environment
Many-to-many vs Point-to-point - As a connected enterprise on Hotlink you link your business with customers, distributors, suppliers, salesforce, service, marketing, supply chain and more - delivering many advantages for higher sustained performance.
Overlapping Trade Channels - Safely work alongside other brands in the non-exclusive web of overlapping trade networks. Channel partners no longer need separate computers for each brand.
Single-tier is limiting Product changes hands many times before it reaches the end-consumer - the supply relays from one to next to another and so forth - these chains are crucial for deeper market penetration or widen geographic reach. It then becomes important to resolve complexities owing to opacity of the (1+n) degree trade partners. Primarily, because brand reputation remains affixed with the company even when the product changes hands many times in multilevel trade chains.
Multilevel traceabilityEnd-to-end data trails are crucial for holistic value-creation and assurance. Distribution chains face rising complexity with rising responsibility for auditable provenance for product authenticity and/or traceability for recalls.
Skip-level visibility Enables strong business intelligence to emerge on a real-time and truly end-to-end basis.
Many functional networks mapped into the platform:
- Customer Services
- Supply Chain
Central Masters - Item masters and price masters are structured as a single data point - used by all mapped parties
One-Point Merchandising - Cataloging information plotted by the brand is used by everyone in the mapped network without duplication and rework
Mirrored Transaction Records - No need to reconcile - Transactional records refer to the same data-point to completely avoid mismatches
Diversity Inclusion - Included irrespective of business size, nature or maturity of business automation. Despite level/ stage of automation, choice of ERP or nature of IT-system. Easy on boarding of even the smallest and remotest of trade partners.
Multinational, Multisector - Design and map both national and multinational trade networks.
Entire business community - Flexibly and securely configure the business/trade relationships with other businesses (customers, distributors, suppliers), third-party-entities, field force and other persons to create a digital map of your entire business community - all in one place.
Any-to-any mapping - Map any business to any business without restrictions
MSME viablility - remotest and smallest traders - Smooth pathways for adoption by MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises)
Trust and safety (unbiased)
Non-discriminatory positioning on an independent platform maintains arms-length segregation that critically offers psychological comfort to assure a sense of security against competitive dilution. It instils data hygiene, nurtures a climate of openness and fuels collaboration.
No Data Use Without Permission - On Hotlink your data is completely safe - you own, control, use and share your data.
Safe from Other Accounts - While the platform offers visibility options, you entirely control the sharing of your data. Watertight sharing frameworks are deployed only in reseller trade arrangements. Brands are securely mapped and firewalled by TULIP (Tunnelled Unit Level Integration Protocol).
Safe from Data Sale - Many platforms claim to use it at a broader cumulative level - but we explicitly state that we do not do that as we are not in the business of selling data or data reports. Besides monitoring usage of your account, we do not access or analyse any data or content in your account.
Safe from Private Label Alternatives - Nor do we use the data to garner any competitive intelligence to float competing products on a private label.
Safe from Users within the Account - Role-based Access Control allow segregation of rights to view and edit.
Full-stack as an Equalizer to Bridge the Digital Divide
Fill-up Gaps for InteroperabilityWhile for some it may initially seem like an overlap with ERP functionalities, the primary purpose it serves is to bridge the gap for MSME traders or other SMB operations in low-revenue markets where IT systems are not equally advanced to enable advanced operational automation of shared workflows.
Wide ScopeHotlink has a full-stack of applications across buy-side, sell-side, salesforce automation, CRM, after-sales and more. Deployed for both upstream and downstream operations. Many business networks on one cloud platform - sales, distribution, supply chain, warehousing, 3PL, procurement, service and more. Design supply chain as a true reflection of your ever-evolving business strategy.
Address complex scenariosEver evolving needs to jointly deliver upon commitments to customers and to shape newer go-to-market formats with superior engines for growth and profitability.
Flat (not hierarchical): No subset/ shadow accounts
Every business manages their account - which is equally empowered like anyone else - no one is a shadow account to anyone else. No account is controlled by any other account. Anchored (key stone) vs everybody equal
No Publicly Published Pricing - B2B brands avoid publishing pricing in public to protect competitive positioning and keeping their strategic headroom for deal closure
1-to-1 Custom Pricing - B2B contracts may vary by every trade partner - we even offer many different contracts with one party (needed when billings are done based on customer segment)
Configurable to fit into any business context - highly adaptable as every business is unique - Every business is unique - more so in B2B arrangements. Platform offers flexibility to fit-for-purpose in your unique business context. Platform is highly configurable and flexible to accommodate custom business scenarios and workflows tailored to customer-specific context.Integration-friendly
- Plug into Enterprise Applications - Work alongside legacy systems. Leverage one-to-many integration.
- Integrate Once to Integrate with Many (not point-to-point) - Each account just integrates once to the platform and they seamlessly trade with all other subscribers on the platform.
- Direct-Use Option Available - Simply login to any browser with anytime anywhere convenience and use it directly for advanced functionalities
On-the-Go Rollout - Not a huge project to setup. The transformation is not a consuming and extensive Implementation.
Pace-it and phase-it - One at a time - Allows you to pace-it and phase-it with a completely modular approach without straining resources & bandwidth - one segment of distributors or vendors or customers at a time or one market, one BU or even one party at a time.
Configurability over Customization - Framework driven designs to allow strong configurability instead of customzations that entail costs and delays
Risk-free Pay-for-Use Arrangement - Hotlink is easy to adopt - on-the-go with hassle-free “as-a-service” arrangement (no upfront capital or commitment)
Amazingly Controlled Total Cost of Ownership - Important to compare at TCO-to-TCO (total cost of ownership)
1-MAX-3 RULE: We strongly urge to define precise and measurable goals to maximize the advantage. No more than 3 goals - ideally 1 primary goal with 2 add-on goals.
AIM FOR MULTIPLE TIMES ROI: Define goals with clear ROI. Just one precise goal is better than 10 vague ones. For instance, sales productivity can itself deliver 2x-4x worth of active selling time - equivalent to current sales payroll cost. Arbitrage on inventory risk can add up to 9% in margins. All this needs to be assessed in your business context - and simply enabled on Hotlink.
- Reshape trade network design and operational models to break down silos - - Linked brands and mapped products
- Link multilevel distribution networks and many-to-many non-linear web of trade arrangements
- Find and get found by new trade partners
- Publish to flag when looking for distributors or vendors
- Leverage continued connectivity to manage and engage a large network
Illustrative use cases: Dealer portal, Customer portal, Vendor portal, Learning resources, Training portal (for trainers), Reference library, Internal Communication, Employee Intranet, Digital Bulletin Board, Employee Recognition, People Activities, Events Profiling, Activity/Campaign Profiling, Staff Policies, Product Info Manager, Employee Recognition, Product Websites, MediaBin Library, Many more
- Sales productivity - Sales enablement with 2x/3x active selling time
- Live Sales Dashboards: no more chasing performance data and confirming sales credits or collections booking
- Redesign sales processes and customer-bonding to align with restricted field-work and reduced physical interactions
- Shift from door-to-door order collection to digital order processing
- New Launches: Unlock effectiveness to leverage the novelty factor and to maximize the impulse triggers for "new"
- Flash Pricing & Promotions
- Quickly on-board distribution partners - Distributors Mapping to BUs, Product Portfolio Delegation, Allocation of Markets; Rapid contracting and speedy expansion
- Adapt on-the-go to redesign the distribution network
- Dynamically Adjusting Transaction Readiness: Reduced administrative man-hours in back-and-forth with new trade partners at the time of changes in item masters, pricing revision etc.
- Single-Point Merchandising
- Speedy Stock Rotation
- Faster stock replenishment to maximize revenue capture
- Outreach: communicate economically yet leverage wide outreach
- Influencer marketing and more influencer, endorsement etc
- Refresh and promote content on a high frequency while you organize it in context by importance (and not randomly layering it under the chronology)
- Gain brand visibility
- Take the transactions out of emails and phone calls - manual handoffs are inherently error-prone
- Custom one-to-one pricing
- Customer Experience
- Easily configure completely different taxes structures beyond federal boundaries
- Manage multi-currency commercials and transactions
- Trusted Planning Data: End-to-end channel visibility enables real-time exchange of reliable planning data
- Analytics: leverage clean channel data for combined chain data analytics
- Multilevel mapping of trade, stock and other data
Open many pathways to enhance margins; redesign the distribution network; arbitrage on cost of working capital and inventory risk using consignment models; direct account management or other ways to reapportion margins across the distribution chain made possible with full-sync and full-view.
- Installed base tracking
- Warranty management
- AMC Coverage
- Claims Management
- Service ticketing
- Repair work orders
- Spared inventory management
CONSTANTLY EVOLVING SCOPE: Business needs keep changing - technology cannot get rigid and outdated as business evolves. With Hotlink you benefit from ongoing enhancements to features and functionalities - platform keeps evolving with regular refinements. Seamless updates refresh capabilities as frequent releases with no downtime regularly upgrade the platform. Refinements and enhancements released on an almost weekly basis. Rigorous and thorough testing protocols ensure that the platform maintains its reliablity and availability.
|FROM BARRIERS||TO LEVERAGES|
|Upfront Commitment||Involves high budget/ capital & resource Commitment||No upfront commitment required - choose to start as low as one user cost (that too gets a 100% offset in the trade fee as and when you transact)|
|Running Cost (TCO)||High annual costs||Pay-for-use with no hidden costs|
|Long-term Project||Full blown digital transformation project with expensive setup and rollout||Plug-n-play -- Adapt on-the-go (easy to DIY; configurability)|
|Disruption & Distraction||Risk: Will disrupt things - they are all set to run the way they are running right now; requires focus, follow-ups and coordination||Pace-it and phase-it on-the-go; one thing at a time, one party at a time|
|Personalization||Rigid design forces too much of standardization and templates||High configurability|
|Agility||Risk: Takes too long to activate a new trade partner or to switch from one to the other||Web-check-in onboarding of trade partners and quick transaction readiness|
|Adaptability||Business needs keep changing - technology gets rigid and outdated as business evolves||Addressing the constant need to evolve - Benefit from ongoing enhancements to features and functionalities - platform keeps evolving with regular refinements; Seamless updates - frequent releases with no downtime - Refinements and enhancements released on an almost weekly basis. Rigorous and thorough testing protocols|
|MSME Inclusion||Difficult to on-board MSME trade partners||Smallest-remotest trade partners viable|
|Network Design||Rigid design; limiting||Many-to-many (non-linear) & Multilevel|
|Trade Secrets||Do not want to publish pricing - is public pricing enforced in any way; are the leads screened and filtered by the platform?||One-to-one Custom Pricing (kept private between trade partners only); leads are direct between trade partners - new business connections are not administered by us|
|Data Safety||Data theft/misuse||No use of data - not even on consolidated basis|
|Account Rights||Is my account a subset to any other account - does the principal brand hold higher rights than distributors||Every account is equally empowered - and positioned the center of their own networks; no shadow/ subset account|
|Interoperability||Handoffs are difficult as the trade partner does not have the same level of functionalities||Full-stack process functionalities for MSMEs to make the processes and capabilities equal for everyone|
|Data Security||Cybersecurity Risk||Enterprise-grade Data Security|
|User Experience||Complex web pages are impossible for day-long screen time||Simple, intuitive and utilitarian user experience|
|Integration||Will the platform complement the enterprise systems||Integration with legacy systems - Work alongside legacy systems. Leverage one-to-many integration|
|Validated||Is the technology reliable||Besides extensive testing protocols before any release, Hotlink platform can be validated easily - either with extensive walkthru testing during detailed live demos or via an technology diligence or a combination of both. Moreover the platform has been deployed in the past with the distribution network of a Fortune medtech brand for many years before being repackaged into its current plug-n-play model|
|White-Labelling||Allow brand appeal along with technology capabilities||Use the domain associated with your brand, sector, project etc.|
|Learning Curve||Too high - demands too much training||Designed for DIY (do-it-yourself)|
|Tech Expertise/ Skills||Expensive tech staff/ arrangements||Tech-skills not needed|
|Support||Support is needed as and when needed||Documentation is available 24x365 plus user support available - charged on actual resolution time per minute (not per hour) - true to the pay-for-use model|