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Making the Network Economy Rock

Making the Networked Economy Rock

The technology underlying the network economy is everywhere, even infiltrating the world of rock and roll. Rock musicians of all types and age groups are embracing it. They range from newer bands such as Atomic Tom, which several years back performed an “audition tape” with their iPhones on a New York subway, to Richard Thompson, founding member of the ‘60s folk rock band Fairport Convention and among Rolling Stone Magazine’s top 100 rock guitarists.

Featured on the agenda at Techonomy 2012, Thompson spoke at length about the impact that technology has brought to his music. Described as a “digitally aware” traditional musician, Thompson claims that by using technology, he has reduced his rehearsal time by 50% and enjoys even greater productivity in music composition.

“Imagine Frank Sinatra in 1956 in the studio with Nelson Riddle,” Thompson related. “He tells Riddle, ‘I love the arrangement, the band and the strings. It all sounds wonderful. But it’s written in B-flat. Can you drop it to A?’ To move everything a semi-tone was a massive amount of work. It might take six copyists working all night long to produce the new arrangement.”

Today, music notation software allows composers to create “templates” for repeating music passages in seconds. With the software, anyone can grab and copy bars of music that may repeat later in a song, and drop it in that section. The software supports multiple input formats: a musical keyboard, a computer keyboard, or a Midi instrument. There are even “validation rules” for composing music that prevent a composer from writing notes that go beyond the bottom note of a bassoon or above the top note of an oboe. Musicians like Richard Thompson also have Facebook pages and web sites that include news, tour dates, music samples, merchandise and more.

What’s remarkable here are the similarities in productivity gains from advances in music composition software with e-invoicing, and the community-building potential of the Internet for every professional. There are cycle time reductions, validation rules, support for multiple file formats, effective use of templates, and web sites/portals for facilitating collaboration.

What’s holding you back from leveraging technology to drive invoice processing efficiency in your accounts payable department, and improving collaboration with your suppliers? In many cases, it’s the perception that you must tackle a major business process transformation project to get things started. The reality is that you can proceed in stages, and an Invoice Maturity Curve can suggest launch points.

So stop walking in a sea of molasses. Follow the lead of Richard Thompson, Atomic Tom, and others in the world of music, and get rocking.

About the author
Chris Rauen
Chris Rauen

Chris is responsible for marketing programs at Ariba that educate finance, procurement, supply chain, and other business professionals on the transformational potential of the Ariba Network and Ariba Financial solutions. Before joining Ariba, Chri... Read More >>>

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