Large enterprises have a lot working to their advantage – large budgets, a huge global workforce, global supply chains, and salesforce…the works.
For a startup, these factors can look intimidating. But it pays to remember that every global giant was once a small fish in a big pond. It is by taking advantage of their strengths that they became the behemoths of today. The startup narrative has also undergone a sea of change over the years, with some very smart solutions coming up from this space. And large enterprises looking for solutions have noticed this.
Here are some compelling reasons why some enterprises are taking a keen interest in working with startups to meet their needs.
Agility is perhaps one of the greatest advantages of a startup environment. Today businesses are evolving. Markets are changing and experiencing a state of constant disruption. Business models are in a state of constant evolution. Customer demands and expectations are becoming increasingly fluid. Technology changes and advancements are demanding organizations to come up with new solutions continuously.
Given the smaller setup, startups gain an advantage here as it helps them remain more nimble and agile to change. What is becoming clear in today’s age is that success does not necessarily come from the position, scale, or first-order capabilities. Rather it comes from ‘second-order’ capabilities…capabilities that allow organizations to foster rapid adoption and the capacity to act on the signals of change.
This is where startups score big as their internal structure allows them to become more responsive to change, come up with creative solutions to pressing problems faster and hence deliver what the customers want when they want it.
Startups have greater risk-taking capabilities than their larger counterparts. This is primarily because there is no bureaucratic red tape to navigate to implement change. Since the needs of the customer are at the heart of the startup culture, it is their needs that dictate the risks the startup needs to take. Initiating a change process, altering a roadmap, changing technology to meet the needs of a product, etc. are much easier and faster in a startup set-up because of the absence of slow-moving decision hierarchies.
Technology startups usually work with the latest, and some of the most trending technologies. Their market positioning also demands them to stay updated on the latest technology trends. What to know which direction is UI and UX heading? Ask a startup.
The resource pool of technology experts working in startups is also adept at coming up with creative solutions to pressing problems using the latest and the most relevant technology stack. Large organizations can gain access to qualified and trained professionals without incurring the cost and expending the time and the effort to locate and hire a trained resource by simply working with a startup. This becomes even more relevant as technologies such as AI and Machine Learning start becoming more mainstream, and accessing top talent becomes harder. Since most startups work in a niche area, they work with niche technologists to develop robust and relevant solutions to suit market demands.
The early stages of designing technology solutions demand the capability to build a working prototype to go to market faster. Rapid prototyping is much easier in a startup environment because of a short feedback loop. Along with this, startups don’t have complicated, interconnected, and rigid tech stacks. With clearer communication between stakeholders, access to the latest technologies, low technical debt, and a willingness to come up with a compelling solution, startups become more adept at addressing stakeholder engagement, client demands, retrospectives, and build smart alignments that contribute to rapid prototyping.
It is these same capabilities that make it easier for startups to make greater customizations for their customers.
When change is the only constant, it becomes imperative to be open to feedback and have the velocity to implement it. Changing product requirements are a given today – stakeholders can rethink the requirements and features. End-users might demand new features and functionalities. The technology choice might need an overhaul keeping business evolution in mind. New elements might need to be introduced to make the product more attractive and useful.
Startups are adept at incorporating all the feedback owing to the absence of bureaucracy and structural flexibility because of smaller, tighter-knit teams. This helps them make group decisions based on feedback faster and implement change without impacting the velocity of development.
Today, collaboration has moved from becoming a buzzword to a business imperative. It has become essential for innovation. Organizations that enable collaboration are successful. Those who don’t have to implement it eventually.
A similar collaboration between large enterprises and technology startups can be the key to foster innovation across geographies and benefit both sides – the large enterprises to create and enter new markets and the startups to develop their solutions and to scale. It’s a win-win for both.