The customer experience doesn’t just involve providing a seamless experience to the end consumers across all touch points. It only starts there – it’s just the tip of the iceberg. An enhanced customer experience is all about providing a consistent, convenient and coherent journey, not just to the end consumers but also to the internal business users interacting with the system.
To enable a truly enhanced customer experience the business needs to meet the rapidly changing market demands, which is only possible when all systems, services and people across the organization are connected in a flexible and simple way.
Is there a need to change?
In the past applications were designed to be standalone, but with the digital revolution and the introduction of web and mobile applications, the need for applications to communicate and share data in real-time meant that legacy standalone applications were beginning to negatively impact the customer experience and restrict business agility and profitability.
IoT – The “Internet of Things” is already booming and with millions upon millions of sensors being incorporated into almost every device imaginable, facilitating the communication, collection and utilisation of this valuable data is simply not possible with siloed applications.
Customer behaviour is changing as technology provides more ways to interact with businesses, driving a need for organisations to change and adapt to these new expectations or risk alienating both existing and potential new customers.
Traditional solutions may provide businesses with all the basic functionalities that are needed, but are they agile enough to ensure that companies can remain competitive in the digital age?
With increasing numbers of competitors and options for consumers, it becomes more and more difficult for companies to stay in business if they are not very agile. Many organisations have existing systems that handle key functions either in siloes or with complex legacy coupling methods that cannot be easily changed or replaced.
Any change to one of the systems shouldn’t have a domino effect that leads to destruction across a range of other systems and business functionality, or inhibits further growth. The sooner the business streamlines the existing architecture and reduces system dependencies, the better the potential for growth and future success.
To decrease time to market and address changing needs, businesses need to have an integrated solution that handles all the functions from placement to fulfilment and realisation. Businesses need architecture that is flexible, scalable and cost-effective, enabling key decision making abilities that are based on quantitative results.
This approach will make it far easier to maintain the ecosystem of platforms once the initial integration is setup. It is future-proof and enables the business to be open and adaptable to varying market needs.
Advantages of this approach:
Platforms can be integrated by connecting them to a middleware solution, as opposed to creating multiple individual point-to-point integrations.
- Expose and integrate existing systems as services (Service Orientated Architecture)
- Address immediate integration challenges while establishing a standard bus for future communications
- Connect existing and future on-premise, cloud and SaaS applications on a unified integration platform
- Securely extend systems integration outside of the organisation to facilitate improved communications and services with external partners
- Gain visibility and security for governance and compliance
- Develop reusable connections once, then repeat deploy anywhere with ease and speed
- Create a future-proof, flexible ecosystem
Why API-led integration?
API-led integration enables the building of application networks – seamless frameworks of applications, data sources and devices connected by APIs, whether on-premise or in the cloud.
- Speed up launch and modification cycles
- Easier to secure and manage access
- Capable of handling large volumes of data
- Enable API management capabilities
- Reduced cost of change
- Provide abilities like Publish-Subscribe