It goes without saying that some of the best things are born from challenges and instability. Innovation is primarily driven by the need to adapt to change or volatile conditions. The COVID pandemic has been one of the most trying times for the planet in recent times. After months of locked doors, businesses have begun to open their doors tentatively, but it is clear that things won’t be the same for a long time.
There has been a great change in the way customers deal with businesses now. Businesses that can’t adapt to these changes won’t be able to survive the following months. While many businesses have easily switched to online shopping, home deliveries, and curbside pickups, they aren’t yet ready for massive digital operation on a large scale. Organizations need to be able to adapt and shift focus to what will drive revenue and cater to the changed needs of their customers.
Although no one could have predicted the outcome of the pandemic, there are some things CEOs, management, and IT leaders can do to mitigate the effects of the zeitgeist and prepare for unexpected crises in the future.
- Build customer-based architecture for scalable/flexible operations
- Construct a Strategic Integration System for Maximum Flexibility
- Develop a culture of scalability and adaptability.
An Ecosystem That Accommodates Scalability for Customers
Scalability is usually focused on ROI, saving resources, and getting things done more easily. However, businesses need to place the focus around customer experience, because otherwise, the optimization of operations will lead to a poorer experience for customers.
A scalable digital business needs to be created based on the needs of its customer base. Thus higher-ups need to focus on customer experience when coming up with new initiatives, connect their data to deliver tailored customer service, adapt to changing customer needs, and see the customer as individuals.
To keep improving their services, companies need to evaluate customer feedback and criticism. When leveraging new technology for a more customer-centric, scalable architecture, consumers’ needs to come first. Using APIs and providing the ecosystem with tools and capabilities for this customer-based innovation will go a long way in scaling operations.
A Strategic Integration System for Maximum Flexibility
Connectivity has always been important and this makes digital even more important. Communicating with customers about their needs, and letting them know your plans can help create a sense of trust and transparency with your target consumer base. Without a comprehensive technology integration plan, new solutions are launched in silos. This also means that businesses won’t have the agility to alter these services to changing customer needs.
Most businesses have lots of data locked away in silos instead of being integrated. This means there will be a gap between the connected experiences required for delivering seamless service and the incongruent systems of data that are required to provide those experiences.
Developing an all-inclusive integration plan revolving around implementing flexible technologies allows businesses to be able to adjust to changing industry trends or consumer behavior shifts. An API-led integration method makes it possible to connect systems, access data, and boost overall agility. It is also important to note that a comprehensive integration only does what it is supposed to in a culture of scalability and adaptability.
Develop a Culture of Scalability and Adaptability
A customer-based approach to scalability together with a strategic plan for API-led integration is the best way to survive in a dynamic business environment. However, these plans and operations will only work if the business has a customer-centric culture focused on scalability and adaptability.
Many businesses already focus on customer-based policies. But a business with customer-centric culture with the added focus on scalability and adaptability has the following practices:
- Consistent focus on the customer in the different areas of the business.
- Providing employee training so that they can work with a more scalable operation.
- Willingness to experiment, learn, and try new things.
- Using data-insights to better understand the customer and predict their needs.
- A focus on solving whatever problems may arise during changing conditions.
A customer-centric culture based on scalability and adaptability allows management and IT leaders to make the ongoing changes they need to successfully respond to changes in consumer needs and the market.
Unexpected challenges and crises can catch businesses unaware, but they can be opportunities to grow and adapt, ensure business continuity, and inspire confidence in their customers. With the right foundation, plans, tools, and culture, businesses can create a future-proof business that will be able to scale up and down when needed and allow them to deliver the experiences that will appeal to their customers. Find out how you can create and implement an API strategy for a scalable, agile business operation.