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Why Engage? A Skeptical Acquian's Change of Heart

We hosted our inaugural digital customer conference, Engage, in the fall of 2014. The event brought more than 500 customers, Acquians, partners, and other attendees together for three days of content-packed sessions, keynotes, and some crazy musical fun. Since the event went so well in its first year, we decided to do it again. With the prevalence of conferences focusing on digital these days, it’s challenging to convey the unique value of a particular event. What’s the special value of this event? Why should business executives pay for... More

Digital Experience Government Must #3: Privacy and Personalization

Personalization of user experience will be the next major paradigm shift in government IT. Imagine a strong hurricane is about to affect your region. You, like many people, are not as prepared as you could be. The storm is projected to make landfall within the next week and you start to go into panic mode about your lack of preparation. You have questions, too, about your flood insurance, FEMA, evacuation, and your children and pets. The TV news suggests online resources like Ready.gov, and you take some time on your lunch break surfing around... More

Acquia Engage 2015: Digital Marketing Sessions Sneak Peek

Digital Innovators. Digital Transformers. Digital Marketers. What do all of these digital masterminds have in common? They’ll all make an appearance at Engage 2015! We’ve already let you in on the deets for some Digital Innovation speakers, and some Digital Transformation speakers, but we’ve still got one talk track left. Digital Marketers. I’m one of those, and my team is full of them. While I might be partial, I see digital marketing teams as an absolutely essential part of this new digital landscape we’re all a part of, and I don’t... More

Transactional vs. Operational Commerce Systems: Friends or Foes?

In our previous posts in this Building a Superior Customer Experience series, we discussed the logistical complexities retail businesses today need to tackle in order to simplify the complicated customer journey, as well as the sales process right from the beginning, when a customer places a new order. In this final post, we'll explore the different systems involved, and how they... More

Digital Experience 'Musts': Why Open Source Matters to Government

Why OSS Matters to Government There are clear reasons why governments are putting increased attention on open source solutions. No Lock-in With OSS, governments maintain complete control of their applications and data. They are not locked into proprietary formats, feature sets, integrations, roadmaps or agendas of a particular proprietary vendor. OSS solutions can be extended, customized, and maintained using common standards and technologies. Going down the road with a single vertically integrated technology stack from a commercial vendor may seem like a great idea upfront. It may demo well... More

Acquia Welcomes Aloe Blacc to Engage 2015!

Big news! We’re thrilled to announce our musical talent for this year’s after-hours entertainment at Royale: Aloe Blacc! You’ve heard his biggest hits, “The Man,” “I Need A Dollar,” and “Wake Me Up” - catchy tunes you can now hear live at Acquia Engage 2015. Here’s a little preview. The self-proclaimed ‘singer, songwriter, producer, dancer, and lover of all art’ is certainly musically gifted, but that’s not all. And he’s agreed to join us for a special speaking engagement... More

WCM is Critical to the Future of Commerce

The customer journey has changed. We know this, you know this, and your customers know this. And technologies are beginning to change to keep up with the ever-evolving needs of both the customer and your business. This is why Acquia took a stand last summer and dropped the ‘e’ in eCommerce. We don’t believe that commerce is relegated to an online or an offline channel. It’s a chaotic, exciting journey where customers go wherever they... More

Apple Integrates Content and Commerce

Apple has traditionally been subject to what analysts refer to as the “Two-Site Syndrome” - a case where brand sites and online stores are separated through different platforms, creating a siloed effect that divides content and commerce responsibilities between different teams. When content and commerce are not unified, customer experiences are disjointed. Buyers must choose between learning about a brand and purchasing that brand. Apple, up until today, was guilty of just that experience. In... More

Damon Davis: NextGov Bold Award Finalist

It was not quite 5 years old and HealthData.gov was already running on outdated technology. The portal launched in 2011 with 197 datasets and by 2015 had swelled to more than 1,900 datasets and a handful of data mining applications. The good news is that the size and demand proved the value of President Barack Obama’s open government initiative. The bad news is that HealthData.gov was not meeting demand and was in need of a major overhaul. Rather than viewing this as a problem to be solved, Damon Davis, director for the Health Data... More

Acquia Engage 2015: Digital Transformation Sessions Sneak Peek

Earlier this week, we shared a first look at some of the speakers and sessions you can look forward to at Engage 2015 -- a handful of Digital Innovators who are doing big things to shake up their respective industries. But lucky for you - that was just the tip of the iceberg! This week, we’re diving into the second talk track, Digital Transformation. In this day and age, digital transformation is a necessity for businesses looking to excel in the digital world, and we’ve gathered some thought leaders who can share their first-hand... More

The Second Digital Government Must, Part I: Open Technology in Government

In my last post I discussed Digital Cloud - the first “Must” of the new Digital Experience Government. I explained how by leveraging a true digital cloud platform, organizations gain tremendous freedom to focus resources away from operations and maintenance, and onto innovation, mission fulfillment, and serving their end users. In this post, I’ll explore the second “Must,” Open Technology. If Digital Cloud is the well-staffed garage I alluded to in my... More

Acquia Engage 2015: Digital Innovation Sessions Sneak Peek

It’s hard to believe Engage 2015 is less than three months away - time sure does fly! And quite honestly, I wish it’d slow down a bit during these precious summer months. I don’t know about you, but I definitely haven’t had my fill of beach days, boat rides, and barbecues just yet, but I also haven’t quite figured out how to morph time… So in lieu of being able to make summer last forever, we’re focusing our efforts elsewhere. Namely, we’re bringing on board some great speakers for Engage, and we’re ready to start sharing some session... More

Building a Superior Customer Experience: The Initial Order

In our previous post in this Building a Superior Customer Experience series, we discussed the logistical complexities retail businesses today need to tackle in order to simplify the complicated customer journey. Let’s take a look at the process right from the beginning, when a customer places a new order. An incoming customer order sets off this chain of complex logistics, and the operational wheels start turning. Business needs to know where stock exists, where an item is shipping from, and where an item is shipping to. If it’s shipping from a store, could that item already be safely nestled... More

The First Digital Experience Government ‘Must’: The Digital Cloud

Before coming to Acquia, I worked as a web content management architect and consultant for numerous public sector enterprises, including the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). At DHS, my main project was the strategy, design, and implementation of a Web Content Management as a Service (WCMaaS) offering from the Office of the Chief Information Officer (and all DHS component organizations such as FEMA, USCIS, etc.). Two objectives of this effort were the consolidation of multiple CMS technologies onto an open standard, and the migration of public facing sites out of in house data centers... More

The Collaboration Situation

One of the biggest pleasures in working at Acquia is the culture that Drupal and open source encourages. The Drupal community has more than 10,000 active developers, 25,000 contributors and over 2,700 core contributors, powering Drupal’s development at an impressive speed. This innovative work to break through barriers is something we all benefit from. Enterprises choose Drupal because it works for them and helps to power their businesses. But an added benefit to this, unusually in the commercial world, is that large enterprises work together for the greater good of their discipline. The... More

A Look at Logistics: Decoupling, Integrating, and the Customer Experience

In this 3-part series, we’ll look at how retailers can tackle the logistical hurdles standing in the way of developing and delivering a superior customer experience. With the adoption and proliferation of cross-channel purchasing paths, the customer journey has changed tremendously. A single-touch purchase is rather uncommon in today’s market, meaning a customer doesn’t regularly browse, research, and buy all at the same time, or through the same channel. Often a purchase is made only after a customer has interacted with the brand multiple times, in multiple places. It’s commonplace to see a... More

5 ‘Musts’ of the New Digital Experience Government

What is Digital Experience Government? What does it mean to become “more digital”? Hasn’t government been “going digital” since the move to the web in the early ’90s? Yes, but to be a digital organization today means providing citizens, public servants, active duty military, and veterans an exceptionally easy and accessible front door to government services. With today’s confluence of new channels, new technologies, citizen hack-tivists like Code for America, innovative public sector leadership and digitally demanding users, government organizations have an opportunity to set the example for... More

Which Open Source Platform Is Used by More .gov Sites and Why

It is no surprise that open source technologies find widespread favor in governments. This is true for both server-side and client-side operations. In fact, many widely used web technologies were created and fine-tuned in government organizations. Governments have unique requirements from their software solutions. Unlike private enterprises, there is no short-term liquidity event on the horizon for government agencies. Governments have to make judicious, long-term tech choices, which is why open source curries such favor in the public sector. As this... More

How Open Source Digital Platforms Enable Greater Citizen Engagement

In late 2014, the Australian government embarked on an ambitious plan to create a “platform for the country.” This platform was a long-term project aimed at creating a highly scalable platform the government could use to serve its constituents, both now and in the future. To create this platform, the Australian government turned to open source technology due to its robustness, scalability, and adaptability. The end result was the “govCMS” platform built on open source content management system (CMS) Drupal. The primary... More

Security, Scalability and Resiliency with the Acquia Platform

Acquia has long been on the forefront of cloud security as it supports some of the world’s most important organizations on the Acquia Platform -- the largest provider of Drupal infrastructure in the world. This week marked the announcement that Acquia is now ready to support customers with Drupal 8 -- from its Platform for building, delivering, and optimizing websites and digital experience -- to its customer success teams. We bring an enhanced level of D8 security to the Drupal 8 platform, but also have the talent, expertise, and processes in place to provide every confidence that our... More

Build Your Next-generation Digital Experiences on Acquia and Drupal 8 Today

Business leaders today face a big challenge when it comes to planning for their organization’s digital success. Business and IT execs I speak with around the world regarding CMS and the challenges of digital experience delivery consistently hit on themes that probably sound familiar to you. To name a few: You need to build sites and experiences quickly, on a modern CMS platform that evolves as your requirements expand. You need to reduce costs to build, deploy, manage and optimize those sites and move key capabilities to the cloud as you rethink your tech strategy. You need to deliver tools... More

Why Open Source Is Driving Digital Transformation in Government

“Change.” That’s the word that best describes today’s digital world. Since 1991, internet users have grown from a handful of researchers to nearly 3 billion globally. Along the way, how we access and use digital information has changed as well. Government organizations, like the rest of society, are under increasing pressure to adapt to this rapid pace of change. Today’s sophisticated consumers demand dynamic, interactive experiences that help them work with–and participate in–government. To craft the digital experiences their constituents demand, governments have to adopt newer technologies... More

BlissWorld.com: Achieving A Higher State of Happy

It’s 2pm on a Friday and I am fried. I’m dying for the workweek to be over. This time last week I was rock climbing in the Austrian Alps with my fiancé trying my best not to scratch up my week-old engagement ring. We flew back to Boston the next day and were both at work on Monday, dying for a vacation from our vacation. Now that I’m just about finished digging out from under a pile of email and to-dos, I’m in desperate need of more traditional relaxation. One project we’ve been working on is telling our newest success story – Blissworld.... More

Open Data - The Global Health Data Imperative

This year’s 3rd International Open Data Conference in Ottawa was a call to action and an amazing opportunity to witness the innovation that is enabling a global data revolution. According to the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House, “Freely available data from the U.S. Government is an important national resource, serving as fuel for entrepreneurship, innovation, scientific discovery, and other public benefits. According to a... More

Redefining Commerce: OluKai - Selling Shoes, Selling a Lifestyle

I discovered the OluKai brand a couple of years ago when my brother bought a pair of OluKai sandals, and lived in them for an entire summer. Nearly daily proclamations of enthusiasm and excitement over that single pair of sandals soon had me looking at the brand website and buying a pair for myself. Much like my Brother, I immediately fell in love, and have been a strong brand advocate ever since. But it’s not just the sandals I fell in love with, it’s the lifestyle that OluKai embodies. It made me want to emulate that in my own life.... More

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