“Our new site is built on a best-in-class platform” “We’ve designed the perfect customer journey” “It’s next-generation Omnichannel” and “We’re moving to the cloud”.
Sounds like everything you’d hear from the leaders of the next big Omnichannel Commerce giant, right?
What about “We’ve hired an SI (System Integrator) with a well-staffed and experienced support team so we can focus on our core competencies and let them use their years of industry knowledge and access to executive-level architects to ensure our site is optimized for our customers and undergoes continuous improvements”?
Not so catchy, but this is where the true ongoing success of an Omnichannel strategy lays.
This is true for B2B or B2C brands undergoing an Omnichannel Commerce platform implementation (like with SAP Commerce Cloud) or a re-platforming. As important as the initial project is, I can’t stress enough how crucial having a great support team will be for your continued success.
Most SIs provide big project work but don’t typically offer 24/7 or on-demand support for changes etc. We can provide the entire SI work, or we can complement your existing SI. Our support helps reduce operational costs and increases your site performance, enabling faster changes, and more rapid deployments than without. This past holiday season, our largest clients had an 800% increase in user sessions and trusted us to support them during their busiest time of year.
Here, I’ll outline some of the benefits and pillars of our Business Operations Support model, and explain why we believe it adds so much value for leading brands in omnichannel commerce.
1 | You don’t have to build your own team of experts (and retain them)
Building an internal support team is extremely difficult: you likely do not have the resources to support every role needed and you definitely will not be able to hire experienced architects. Even if you train your own team to meet the required standards, there is a high likelihood that they will leave for another company (such as an SI) that can offer them opportunities to work on more challenging projects.
When you rely on a team for support, it’s important that your standard processes are documented, so that knowledge transfer can happen when adding or losing members. Since the team can only draw documented examples from 1 implementation project, you don’t have a lot to work with.
An SI, however, has examples from many different implementations, platforms, and use cases to create better and better standards as technology evolves. Additionally, the longer a support team works with your unique architecture, the better their knowledge becomes. Common issues get resolved more quickly until they stop happening at all, and when changes need to be made (such as branding, upgrades, or new integrations), they can handle it more easily than if you suddenly introduce a new party to the architecture.
2 | You have one point of contact when things go wrong – and it’s not your own team.
It is your support team’s job to fix things when you ask them to! When you sign a service agreement, you know exactly what you can expect in terms of a service level, what the scope of their work includes, and recourse if they don’t meet the legally contracted obligations.
Do your employees want to be woken up at 3 am on a Sunday to fix the site because payments aren’t being processed? I would guess no – but if you’ve contracted us to do it, it’s our job.
In an ideal world, your site should just work. You’ve mapped out and implemented the integrations, you’ve selected a great hosting provider, and QA came back and said you’re good to go. However, when something affecting your customers’ experience does happen, like an issue with a third-party vendor integration or any number of pieces just stop working, you want to be sure you have a team you can rely on. The collective knowledge of the group and the professionalism and experience of your first point of contact can deliver a solution with the most efficient use of time and resources. Our support team has access to executive-level architects at our organization, so no matter the problem, there is a chain of escalation to resolve it.
As a bonus, with our proactive diagnostics, problems get dealt with early on. Eventually, you experience fewer issues, as fixes and updates become permanent improvements.
3 | You can learn from our experience
We call it Relationship-based Consulting. As we learn and grow from the challenges your projects and support entail, we also want you to learn and grow from how we handle it. If you have your own team doing some of the development work, we can share our own best practices, so that you can benefit from efficiencies and stellar results on both sides of the partnership.
In addition, with our breadth of knowledge and thought leaders – including our architects – in the omnichannel commerce industry, we’re always in tune with what the new tech and industry trends are (what your competitors are doing). Do you like working on modern and exciting projects? So do we, and if you’re looking for a strategic advisor, we’re happy to have conversations with you to get to the bottom of your business development goals and give our advice on how we would tackle them.
There is a better way to do support for your Commerce platform. Contact us and find out how!