Don’t wait to use web firms told

Companies must get to grips with e-commerce now and use internet technology throughout their business processes or risk losing markets, experts warned last week. Joe Sawyer, European internet commerce analyst at Forrester Research, said that by 2003, $3.2 trillion worth of goods and services will be transacted over the internet. Firms that adopted a policy […]

Companies must get to grips with e-commerce now and use internet technology throughout their business processes or risk losing markets, experts warned last week.

Joe Sawyer, European internet commerce analyst at Forrester Research, said that by 2003, $3.2 trillion worth of goods and services will be transacted over the internet.

Firms that adopted a policy of waiting to see how others used the technology, in the hope of avoiding pitfalls, were mistaken, he said.

Speaking at a seminar organised by IBM and supply chain software company i2 Technologies, he warned: `By the time a model that you might want to emulate has emerged in your industry, it’s too late.

`It is a myth that by waiting, companies can gain more control and avoid the mistakes of their competitors. By waiting and losing control, it costs more to catch up.’

David Burman, director of research at IT research specialist the Butler Group, said the economy was going through changes as profound as those when the agricultural age changed into the industrial age.

`We are entering a period where information, not capitalisation, becomes the key determinant of success, so industrialists won’t make it into the information age unless they get their act together.’

Leader comment, p9