The morphing of platform models and service models has resulted in a movement now focusing on platform-as-a-service. Platform operating models can be used in a number of ways that include:
– Platform can be used to serve your internal business needs (common business processes internally hosted)
– Platform can be used to service a closed community (electronic banking, trading)
– Platform can be used publicly where an open community participates (Google Apps, Salesforce.com Appexchange, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud)

In one of my previous posts I wrote about 1st and 2nd order business models – one of the ways in which the platform model is evolving to allow for 2nd order based revenue models. We have done extensive work in financial services using the concept and found that there are major opportunities in creating a common global electronic platform where banks can “configure”, assemble or develop their own unique requirements. This might never happen seeing that integration with legacy systems and legislatory issues will prevent adoption.

This is the abstract of a paper we submitted in February to an academic conference:
Institutionalizing product line practices is a complex task, requiring thorough understanding of concepts, and change processes with strong business commitment. This research reveals that financial services organizations in South Africa, Australia and the United Kingdom have business models that focus on business autonomy and agility to ensure financial performance without much concern for understanding technology commonalities. Business pressures are forcing these organizations to find models that can assist with leveraging common technologies more effectively. Although the set of product line practices and patterns available provide comprehensive coverage of the paradigm, financial services organizations struggle to implement the concepts effectively. This paper describes a Platform Operating Model (POM) which is used as a globally deployable change framework aimed at multi-national financial services organizations. The approach, as implemented in a number of organizations, focuses on the simplification and adaptation of product line techniques without compromising the essentials associated with successful product line institutionalization and operation.

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