Customer-First: Business Technology Strategy is an Enterprise Imperative
I recently attended a Forrester Research event called “Avoiding the Top Three Customer Experience Risks“. As a Product Owner and Marketer, this talk was perfectly positioned for me and for Yottaa’s target market: Enterprise Line of Business and IT leaders.
In a nutshell, the process of developing, delivering and maintaining an online or mobile application has materially changed in the last 10 years. However, despite a knowledge that things have changed, there is still significant fragmentation in how various business groups view and deal with the issue. For example, leaders across the organization apply very different strategies to online application optimization services:
- IT and Operations lean on CDN technology
- AppDev leverage APM technology
- Line of Business groups (Marketing, eCommerce) trust Marketing Automation, Personalization and Test & Target solutions
At the end of the day every business unit is aligned in maximizing their company’s business performance. Marketing and eCommerce groups may focus more on top line growth, and IT and AppDev teams on the bottom line, but the endgame is 100% aligned. Problems start when each group focuses on their own siloed way of identifying and dealing with problems.
By myopically focusing on “what they know” and not adhering to an overarching business strategy for customer experience optimization, Enterprises fail to align on a set of business technology solutions (a concept that has gained more ground in the APM space than any other) which leads to friction and consistently disappointing business performance.
The age of the customer, or end user when we’re discussing online applications, means that a customer-first strategy is paramount. This does not end with the initial discovery phase of the journey, but the ongoing process of learning, buying, using, asking questions and ultimately deciding whether to engage with your brand. Because of this, and all of the groups within a business that are responsible for elements of this journey, it is critical to take a measured and systematic approach to optimizing that ongoing experience:
- Understand the end-to-end journey, and where the problems arise
- Determine your business capabilities and capacity to deal with the challenges you face
- Then define the patterns that should be addressed and how to address them to define actionable steps for the various business groups to take
- Use this to create a technology management strategy to align your various groups, e.g. align on the online application optimization services you’ll be using including what each is intended to optimize, and define your vendor management and service acquisition strategy
- Finally, define a business technology strategy that will continuously align your cross-functional teams around the means your business will use to maximize the end user experience for your online and mobile apps.