To the uninitiated, e-business refers solely to the process of buying and selling goods over the Net. In our increasingly interactive age, however, it actually means much more. e-Business: Roadmap for Success, by Ravi Kalakota and Marcia Robinson, defines the term as "the complex fusion of business processes, enterprise applications and organizational structure necessary to create a high-performance business model." Kalakota and Robinson--specialists in the field who serve as founder-CEO and president, respectively, of a company called e-Business Strategies--show how to employ its tenets to compete more effectively in today's brave new world. Aiming at managers who recognize the need to plan and implement just such a course of action, the authors (with help from some pioneers currently practicing these techniques) offer solid advice for designing interrelated strategies focused on customer relationships, resource planning, order management, and supply chains, and on evaluating investments needed to make them a reality. Describing efforts undertaken by successful e-businesses such as Charles Schwab, which adopted a system that provides sales reps with real-time access to information on customers and appropriate new products, the two chart the course that trailblazing companies are following and savvy business people would be wise to emulate. --Howard Rothman
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