Towards a Framework for Managing the Business-to-Business e-Commerce Chain
Vincent Wade (Trinity College, Ireland), David Lewis (University College, UK), Jacques Brook (KPN Research, The Netherlands) and William Donnelly (Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland)
Copyright: © 2002
The rapid of growth in e-Commerce/e-Business provides new opportunities and challenges for next generation Internet and telecommunication service providers. The collective global e-Commerce activities are estimated to exceed $6 trillion dollars in 2004. However, a key element in successful e-Commerce/e-Business operation is the improved integration and management of the e-Business value chains (i.e., management of business-2-customer (B2C) and business-2-business (B2B) chains. Current e-Business managed solutions, where available, tend to concentrate on only single aspects of the e-Business integration, e.g., outsourced accounting management or virtual private network (VPN) services. This is analogous to first-generation telecommunication management systems which delivered stand-alone management applications for specific management concerns, e.g., performance management and configuration management. However, e-Business organizations of the future will require a more holistic, integrated approach to e-Business management networks. Such e-Business services would support integrated management solutions (e.g., quality of service, accounting, service level agreement, negotiation and management, virtual private network mgmt., etc.) across the B2C and B2B value chain. This paper proposes a management component framework to support the rapid and flexible construction of an e-Commerce management infrastructure. This management solution is based on a holistic management approach supporting seamless integration of network and application management services (i.e., vertical), as well as integrating management across distinct functional areas (i.e., horizontal). The chapter also presents an analysis of the business model for a provider of such B2B and B2C management and examines the requirements for such management services. It also identifies best practice and state-of-the-art research upon which this framework is based and describes how this research is being developed as part of a large EU telecommunications research project.