Monday, July 14, 2008

Project VRM

For the next two days I am attending the Vendor Relationship Management (VRM) Workshop at Harvard University's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. There are about 45 people attending this workshop. The tag for content on Flickr and other sites is #VRM08. I may also broadcast and record some of these sessions using Stickam

The premise of Vendor Relationship Management:

"A free customer is more effective than a captive customer"

How do we turn the current state around. The relationship is at the centre. The relationship between people and organizations.

Some interesting discussions are already starting up. For example: How does VRM get traction in the enterprise? This has already got me thinking about the HealthCare industry as I prepare for the next HealthCamp in DC (HealthCampDc). It strikes me that VRM might find an outlet under the emerging Medical Home concept. To quote the opening line of the Wikipedia entry:

"The basic premise of the medical home concept is continual care that is managed and coordinated by a personal physician with the right tools will lead to betterhealth outcomes."

Identity is a critical component in VRM. Building VRM Relationship Services will be dependent upon new protocols and standards in the applications and network layers.

Some of the emerging components of VRM include:

  • Personal RFP
  • Personal Datastore (this ties in with Data Portability initiatives)
  • Personal Address Manager (this becomes a fascinating SocialGraph application)
  • Personal Healthcare Record
  • Paychoice
  • RelButton

Keith Hopper talked about VRM in Public Broadcasting. Kith talked about Money Left On The Table (MLOTT - a Doc Searls originated term). The RelButton becomes interesting to Public Broadcasters as a mechanism to provide additional avenues to collect donations from viewers and subscribers.

R-Cards are one of the components behind the RelButton. R-Card is a trusted channel between two parties - an umbilical cord so to speak. R-Cards is a component of the Higgins project.

Higgins is an open source identity framework that preserves your privacy having been developed from a user-centric perspective.

The Identity Web Services Framework is a key enabling platform for VRM.

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