Page 3: Online communications
Communication in business involves delivering clear, accurate messages to a relevant target audience. An effective communication channel is one that provides a clear 2-way or multi-channel flow of communications.
Online communications provide Cummins with high levels of connectivity to all its stakeholder groups, providing considerable benefits relative to other forms of communication:
- speed - instantaneous communication
- immediacy - the ability to continually update information
- accessibility - easy, given the wide availability of the web
- consistency - single common point of reference worldwide.
As a major B2B company, these attributes are particularly relevant to Cummins. The company has rapidly moved many of its traditional communications online. For example, its engineering and other manuals were originally in paper form. Later, these were loaded onto CDs and are now published on the web using modern portal web technology.
The web has enabled Cummins to develop competitive advantage from its original strength, i.e. its engines, power systems and components, by enhancing support to intermediaries such as distributors and OEMs. This support is known as augmented product.
There is an ongoing process of improvement in the augmented product as Cummins develops the technology and the software to give customers a better service and relationship with the company. Cummins operates in a fast moving market and keeping up with change is essential to success.