Embrace real-time data integration to create positive customer experiences

iPaaS allows enterprises to remain relevant against future disruptions in most changing digital competitive environments

data integration

With more global digital transformations taking place, at the end of the day customer experience is the most important aspect an enterprise needs to ensure it’s investing in for business growth. Throughout each touchpoint, enterprises have the responsibility to engage and retain customers, and operating in real time is a key way to be successful. Things like knowing when a customer submits a support ticket, when there’s an issue with the supply chain or when there’s an available customer discount should all be able to be accomplished in real time, enabling all business functions to coordinate seamlessly, creating “wow” customer experiences.

Today, customers expect things to be done instantaneously from a brand, without flaws, so a real time approach is essential. Without one, an enterprise can easily experience complications in terms of engineering, costs, resources, expertise, planning, vendor management, brand reputation, business loss and more. And most importantly, when enterprises don’t automate any of their processes, it’s inevitable that customers will feel the negative side effects as well. In such cases, the customer experience is disjointed and lagging, and it puts enterprises in a situation where they could easily lose revenue. At the same time, a loss of a customer disrupts business growth, inviting competitors and disruptors to challenge them.

Enabling a positive, real time customer experience requires a marriage of a variety of tools, channels, data, devices, applications and technologies. These can include API generation, API management, business process management, microservices, performance engineering, machine learning, artificial intelligence, data lakes, cloud and DevOps. As these cohesively work together, it’s also critical that customer context, intent and behavior are also considered by an organization so that intelligent decisions can be made for prolonged, personalized customer engagement. While this sounds easy to implement, such data is typically distributed across different applications within an enterprise as opposed to one single source. Hence, it becomes essentially a basic need to have an integrated environment of all siloed applications, online and offline channels, and data sources to provide comprehensive and personalized digital, real time customer experiences that can result in business impact for an enterprise.

When enterprises go about building integrations the traditional way, they come with multiyear contracts that don’t have real time, personalized components. That means that by the time the engagement is over, customer behaviors have shifted drastically. New customer requirements make cost benefit ratios ineffective for an enterprise that performs integrations in a traditional sense. To sustain a positive experience across all digital touchpoints of the customer’s journey, integration automation is a necessity. But in order to have constant efficiency, continuous improvement is critical since customer behavior and requirements change so often.

Automatic integration platform as-a-service (iPaaS) is a most important aspect of enterprises’ digital transformation journeys today, since they are tasked with providing real time, personalized customer experiences across different channels, devices and interactions. iPaaS’ value is providing continuous ways of providing and improving real time interactions for businesses experiencing a digital transformation journey. Additionally, iPaaS allows enterprises to remain relevant against future disruptions in most changing digital competitive environments.

At this time, if an enterprise chooses not to adopt an iPaaS, they’ll end up lacking insight into customer savviness and being more prone to disruption from emerging players. It is the most critical platform every enterprise needs to mandate across IT and business operations if it wants to experience growth and avoid a decline in customers who make the choice to evolve.

Without iPaaS, an enterprise will very likely experience brand irrelevancy since there is clearly a lack of desire within the organization to grow and retain current customers. The consumer internet revolutionized the digital customer experience to a point where all people expect a business’ operations to be extremely automated and technologically savvy. This may sound dramatic, but not having real time automation within an enterprise is the same as not needing customers for business success. iPaaS is the next generation internet browser of enterprise application integration; not having it makes enterprises digitally irrelevant to current and emerging customers.

Copyright © 2017 IDG Communications, Inc.