Firms of today have found it difficult to provide effective services to their customers. Still, all firms understand that success depends on creating and maintaining long-term and mutual relations with customers and other stakeholders.
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In order to achieve such success, a firm must understand the needs of its customers and other stakeholders. Moreover, firms must also adapt to changes in customers’ lifestyles over time.
This is a plan to introduce an ecosystem at Ubuntu in order to create value for customers, the organisation, and other partners.
It highlights how Ubuntu can use an ecosystem to create value to both internal and external customers. Apart from benefits to various stakeholders, the plan also has indicators of a successful plan.
Members of an ecosystem must interact with one another in their setting (Moore, 2006). An ecosystem has several, mutually dependent elements that work as a whole in a complex environment (Levin, 1998).
Innovators in many firms have envisioned such scenarios for a long time with aim of creating a system in which stakeholders, data, innovations, and business processes work in harmony in order to offer best services, enhance customers’ satisfaction and performance of the firm.
The only available option for Ubuntu to achieve its aim of growing business and customer satisfaction is creating the capacity to understand the importance of profitable customer relationships in a discerning manner i.e., gaining customer insight.
Effective managing of the dynamic needs of customers in an ecosystem can be appropriate for controlling attention of Ubuntu Canonical. Ubuntu has many products.
However, the company has not developed an efficient ecosystem for its customers and stakeholders. It is also important for Ubuntu to develop a working relationship with other product providers who work with Canonical. Ubuntu also works with many different software developers.
Canonical must look for ways of understanding their clients and provide the right product or software through the right ways, time, and prices (if any).
On this regard, Canonical should rely on user information and emerging technologies in order to enhance demand, attract, and retain many customers, who shall drive future growths of the company.
Today, customers have gained access to information from various products, along with several product choices, which has transferred control to such consumers. As a result, customers have high expectations from firms. In order to create an edge in the future, Canonical must understand its customers intimately.
It must understand needs of customers, preferences, wants, and values. Such information shall help Canonical to redesign its business processes in order to meet the demands of its global customers. Canonical must shift to the new paradigm in order to achieve such results because the retail industry is changing.
Canonical needs to use information from customers to create effective information management system and use such information to enhance performance of the firm. There are new forms of technologies that can help the company establish its ecosystem, which include evolutionary and edge computing capabilities.
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Canonical must adopt these technologies in order to manage its customer ecosystem. The future of the industry shall be interactive through innovation and value creation for customers and sponsors.
Emerging technologies shall make the processes difficult for many firms. Therefore, Canonical must work with the right partners that can help it to create value to customers.
Ubuntu has many products from various partners. However, it lacks a clear market structure for its products. It lacks a well-defined business approach because Ubuntu creates free software based on the needs of users.
Therefore, the problems that occur due to a lack of clear marketing structure may be invisible to Ubuntu executives.
For instance, the company lacks specific indicators of adoption, partners’ contributions, usages, and attrition. Therefore, Ubuntu cannot establish a credible customer ecosystem without a focus on all stakeholders.
Changes in technologies should transform Canonical into a customer-focused product provider. Moreover, it should enhance customer services and create customer loyalty by improving customer’s experience in its Web site. Thus, the move should be from an efficient to an intelligent value chain.
The ecosystem should create an intelligent value chain for customers, Canonical, and sponsors. Ultimately, it will transform Canonical. Customers of Ubuntu can have products they require at the right time and way.
In other words, the company must leverage on emerging technologies to enhance the provision of products and services to its users (Adner and Kapoor, 2010). In fact, Ubuntu should study the market trends and understand needs of its customers.
Canonical can trace activities of its customers and download history in order to create value for every customer. Moreover, efficient and interactive Web site shall provide opportunities for customers to understand various products that are available in Canonical.
In the past, many organisations have noticed improvements due to the creation of an enterprise infrastructure. However, firms have faced challenges of seamless merger of emerging technologies and services within their enterprise platforms. These challenges emerge from inherent weaknesses in the platforms.
Ubuntu has more than 500 employees in over 30 countries, and it serves millions of users. Therefore, it has massive data, which contribute to difficulties in processing customer information (Weiss and Gangadharan, 2010). This results in rigid operation processes.
Canonical has the responsibility of providing new products to customers, new platforms for exploring the Web site and reaching out to many clients in innovative ways. In most cases, the company cannot support such massive data because of complexity and a weak ecosystem.
Data available for Canonical to use for enhancing value to customers in its decisions and operations are abundant. However, the company does not use such information to enhance its operations or customer value.
Canonical should streamline its products and create an ecosystem that supports all stakeholders of Ubuntu. For a virtual company, it is critical to focus on the effective use of data in order to create value to customers. It will provide effective and practical approaches of handling complex requests of sponsors and customers.
Customers will continue to demand improved services while Ubuntu shall look for customer retention and acquisition. The new ecosystem can allow the company to respond to such demands.Such a new ecosystem should be able to deliver the required results now and in the future (Adner, 2012).
Canonical can work with sponsors and partners outside Ubuntu in order to provide services that meet present and future needs of customers. This should be a form of outsourcing or collaboration with other parties in order to address product challenges in the company (Fjeldstad et al., 2012).
Creating such an ecosystem should achieve a number of strategic, operational, and financial benefits to sponsors, the organisation, and customers. Some of these benefits may include:
- Gaining access to innovations and best practices within the industry
- Improve support to customers
- Eliminate risks by enhancing partnership with leading IT firms
- Free resources in order to concentrate on strategic projects
- Align Ubuntu products to market demands
- Reduce costs and align the budget to strategic projects
- Promote communication with product developers
- Enhance responsiveness to changes in the market and customers preferences, needs, and wants
Canonical should work with sponsors and product developers in order to create enduring relationships, which define and promote responsibilities of all stakeholders. Product developers should focus on quality products that offer real solutions to customers.
The new ecosystem must respond to increasing needs of customer through collaborative business approaches (Hakansson and Ford, 2002). The approach must deliver unparalleled value to users of Ubuntu products.
The ecosystem must place customers at the centre of a challenging environment that includes Canonical, product developers, customers, and sponsors. Ubuntu ecosystem must deliver value to customers through three main ways.
First, Ubuntu ecosystem should focus on the industry excellence. The ecosystem should provide customers with unparalleled solutions that can address specific challenges in the market. It should reinforce industry solutions by providing superior products through working together with customers, product developers, technology experts, Canonical, sponsors, and individual members.
The group should concentrate on achieving Ubuntu’s top priority of providing free products, high value products, and technology needs to customers. For instance, Ubuntu has millions of users and several product developers across the world.
These users and developers can share their best practices and experiences with Ubuntu products so that they can deploy a specific product to a given industry.
Second, Ubuntu has a large community. It can rely on community-generated results in order to provide improved services and products to customers.
An ecosystem that has a community support can enhance coordination and harness collective abilities and strength of all users in order to achieve the desired results through interacting with other users, customers, sponsors, and developers in similar projects or tasks.
For instance, product developers can engage million of users of Ubuntu products in the ecosystem. The community can generate feedback through posting on various topics on a daily basis.
Moreover, users of Ubuntu Desktop and other software can use ‘Ask Ubuntu’ platform in order to solicit feedback from other users within the ecosystem. Moreover, such users can meet virtually or in person and exchange ideas about best practices and solutions within the industry.
Finally, the Ubuntu ecosystem should deliver value to customer through orchestrated core innovations (Dhanaraj and Parkhe, 2006). The ecosystem should encourage collaboration among members who have different resources that can help in improving solutions for users (Yoffie and Kwak, 2006).
Over the last few years, Canonical has gained insights and improved provisions of products needed in the market for customers’ challenges (Adegbesan, 2009; Bstieler, 2006).
Ubuntu can measure its ecosystem success by noting the level of adoption of emerging technologies and their applications in the ecosystem for creating value to customers through effective interactions, management of products, and exchange of information within the ecosystem.
Sponsors and other partners have significant roles in creating Ubuntu ecosystem and value to customers (Bloom and Dees, 2008).
By using ‘Ask Ubuntu and Ubuntu Support’ applications, customers can gain valuable solutions to challenge they have, get the industry trends, and other solutions that can supplement Ubuntu products.
Moreover, all stakeholders can engage with the ecosystem through the support programme and Ask Ubuntu platform. Ubuntu can strengthen the ecosystem by rewarding Canonical and other partners based on the value they offer customers (Boudreau and Lakhani, 2009).
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