Now that the anything-goes attitude about the Internet is over, enterprises are beginning to see the wisdom of strategic planning in the implementation of e-commerce networks. This is planning that network administrators and other IT professionals have been clamoring for since the beginning of the World Wide Web craze. The potential benefits of electronic commerce in the long term can be reached only by proper strategic planning in the development, deployment, and implementation of applications. At this stage of the Internet game, many organizations are going to need established and professional help in creating these e-commerce applications.

Diamond Technology Partners, headquartered in Chicago, is touting itself as one of those professional organizations equipped to help your company reach e-commerce nirvana. According to its Web site, it claims to be the creator of “killer apps” for e-commerce. It maintains this feat by combining “business strategy with information technology to create innovative digital strategies.” Using what it calls the “5-Step Killer App Process,” Diamond purports to be at the cutting edge of digital strategy. Apparently, there is at least a grain of truth to these claims, with Fortune 500 companies like Bank of America, Enron, and Goldman Sachs all giving some credit to Diamond for their successful e-commerce ventures.

Judging by the Diamond Technology Partners’ Web site, this is clearly no fly-by-night organization. The design is sophisticated and understated. Company information, client lists, services offered, and biographies of key personnel are all readily available via the intuitive navigational interface. The site includes access to forums and to a company e-zine with insights from Diamond executives. The e-zine, called Viewpoints, also includes several articles written by company executives, clients, and strategic partners. These articles are refreshingly candid and are presented as white papers with very little self-serving public relations language. The seamless integration of community-building features in such an objective manner is another indication of a highly professional organization. The Diamond site is a stellar example of how to do a Web site the right way.

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