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5 ways to future proof your platform

The future’s always around the corner, and for any organisation, it sometimes arrives quicker than you think, which is why you need a platform that’s as robust as possible. You need to build for the long-term, rather than being reactionary or keeping up with a trend.

You should build systems and empower people to thrive on change. Work out what works for you instead of jumping on new tech (which may actually fail).

Having an open system that can be easily adapted and integrated with different systems and plug-ins is highly advisable, as it enables incremental replacement of core modules rather than being dependent on your proprietary system’s timelines.

1. Jump into the passenger seat

It’s a lot easier to keep with your customer’s journey if you join them on it. When it comes to new platforms and processes, they’ve often got their foot down, and will leave most businesses in their dust, trying to catch up. If you’re right there with them, you can evolve your service as their needs change.

It’s essential to understand how your consumer uses and interacts with your content, and how this changes with the emergence of new technologies. Put yourself in their shoes and build your platform around their priorities. Collect advanced profiles of your customers and ensure you can communicate with them through any one of the operational channels.

2. Let data be your guide and take you on a journey

There’s no excuse nowadays for not knowing your customers. Dig deep for data-driven insights that will enable technological decision-making and drive personalised, real-time experiences tailored to each and every customer.

Unify content and consumer data in a single solution on your platform to drive engagement, increase conversions, and build loyalty. It’s a challenge, but by collecting data across multiple customer touch points, you can establish a detailed profile and serve relevant, personalised content every time.

3. Build a digital factory, and they will come

Build a digital factory, not a site. Project-to-project websites are a drain on time and resources when you could be delivering better digital experiences twice as fast. In fact, 90% of companies say they face challenges from having multiple sites across multiple brands[1]. With a highly efficient, standardised approach to creating and managing your site, processes become much more efficient and lead time drops, giving you more time to focus on the important details.

Whatever your organisation size, you’ll face similar challenges of scalability, repeatability, and governance. With the factory model though, you’ll have the help of standardised components, processes, and a management structure that works in a hyper-efficient factory automation mode to assemble, deliver, operate, and govern digital businesses.

4. Digital signage of the times

Digital signage is now an integral part of the customer experience journey. With the addition of the Internet of Things and voice activated devices, there’s a lot beyond the traditional site to consider when thinking about how users will consume your content – and it’s important to make the experience seamless.

The key to this lies in an agile platform that can adapt and grow. Don’t create for the latest thing, create for everything.

Digital signs and screens, networked across many locations and powered by centrally managed content, represent the next wave of customer experience.

5. Open platform sesame

Having an open platform allows you to innovate and adapt. Having open architecture/API lets you integrate with anything and give you the flexibility you need to get as close to future-proof as possible.

Want to see how your digital experiences measure up, and where you need to pick up the pace? Try our Digital Fitness Checklist!

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[1] According to a survey of 450 digital professionals, conducted for our 2017 Beyond The Hype report