The past week I had two conversations where we touched upon the value of an alliance management department and the use of a systematic approach towards alliances. In both cases was the question centered on how to make this value tangible and visible to senior management. Challenging questions where an easy answer is not always available.
In go to market or channel alliances answering the question might be relatively easy as the value of the department can be related to the revenue generated. However for alliances that are more complex or from a different nature the value of the department or the use of a methodology may be less easy to make tangible. The benefit of having a department and methodology will be in the faster process of creating alliances and for instance the prevention of common mistakes due to experience and best practices. As such a department and systematic approach allow for a faster and more solid approach to alliance management and therefor prevents cost to be made.
As many studies show, including the recent ASAP 4th state of alliance management study, the use of best practices and a systematical approach to alliance formation and management increases the success rates of alliances. An increased success rate translates back in prevented costs and cost saving of hidden cost. However it remains difficult to express this in concrete tangible numbers.
What do you think, is there an easy way to express the value of the central alliance management office? Do you and how do you make it tangible in your organization? Will be great to read your view in the comments below.