COVID-19 will have long term if not permanent impact on how society will interact with all aspects of our lives including how we work, shop, dine and manage our finances. Companies must react and put the right measures in place to respond to this event and potentially future events as well as accommodate changes in consumer behavior which have already taken place.  In some respects, society is fortunate this happened in 2020 and not in 2000 because technology is in place to perform many activities that we could not do 20 years ago.  Our ability to work from home using video conference technology, home delivery of food with DoorDash and Uber Eats, banking on-line including such functions as the ability to deposit checks with just the click of a phone, shopping on-line often with next-day delivery, having virtual doctor visits and the migration of many retailers to digital storefronts make this much less impactful as it otherwise could have  been.  Even with all the progress we have made, there are many businesses which have still not fully moved to a digital interaction with their customers and many of them are significantly impacted by the events taking place.  These high-touch areas of our economy must evolve their business models to provide equal to if not better levels of service through a digital interaction model compared to their current high-touch engagement models.  This will not only be a necessity against future impacts but will simply become part of doing business with a society which will forever change the way they do business.

As I have spent the majority of my career in banking technology, one obvious area of improvement is how we pay for things.  As children we were all told cash is dirty.   Guess what, that not only has been imprinted in our minds, but come to find out it’s true.  This will continue to drive society away from cash.  Even with the reduction of using cash, we don’t want to be forced to touch payment keypads if we pay with cards.  Society must move to completely contactless payment methods.  Most of us carry around a very secure payment device in our pockets in the form of a smart phone and business should be using that as the payment platform of choice.

Car shopping is much more high touch than it should be.  Tesla has proven that car shopping and ordering can be a completely digital experience.  Car dealers are currently significantly impacted on the sales side of their dealerships and should evolve to a digital dealership.  The service side of the business could also improve with smarter cars that can diagnose many of the problems before they ever are taken in for service.

The real estate industry seems like a difficult one to move to digital but with Virtual Reality technology readily available, there is no reason those first showings at that initial list of potential houses could not be done “virtually” using VR technology with a virtual walk through to narrow down to a list of homes that are truly worth an in-person visit.  This also enables potential customers relocating from a different city to do the majority of their home shopping before they even visit their new destination.     

 

HCL Software has the products and services to help move your business to a digital interaction model providing the digital storefront for your customers to engage with your business across the platform of their choice.  HCL Commerce provides an omni-channel platform providing personalized storefront capabilities for both business to consumer and business to business interactions.  HCL Digital Experience helps businesses create engaging digital experiences across multiple device types by integrating rich applications and content to deliver these new engagement models.    

 

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Further Reading
Digital Solutions | January 12, 2021
Six Ways to Ensure Your Digital Experience Is Excellent. In a Digital-Focused World, Make Sure You’re Working With the Best
A digital experience takes place when a customer has an interaction with an organization exclusively through digital technology. The world was already heading in an increasingly digital direction, but in the wake of COVID-19, as more and more teams and organizations have been working remotely and relying on technology to power their workflows, a strong digital customer experience has never been more imperative. What are some steps you can take right now to maximize your digital experiences?  Invest in strong customer experience software In order to ensure that they’re providing the best possible customer experience (or CX), companies need to prioritize their customer experience platform — cheaper one-trick-pony solutions won’t cut it. A strong CX platform will offer personalized options to the customer, ensure that their information is secure, and offer quick and reliable self-service when needed. Advanced data collection and machine learning personalization solutions included in a CX platform make a well-rounded solution crucial to invest in.       2. Provide a secure platform When providing secure personal information such as a bank account or patient ID, customers need to be sure that private and personally identifiable information is handled safely and securely. Though customers are generally willing and enthusiastic to engage in convenient digital experiences, the major data breaches of recent years still leave plenty of consumers understandably skittish about providing organizations with personal info. According to data gathered by Lift361, “strong security increases overall customer satisfaction from 13% to 40%, and customers have shown they are willing to spend more with companies they trust to protect their privacy and data.” Ensure that your tech has personal security measures in place and be transparent with users and prospects about just how safe they can feel using your platform. [button link="https://www.hcltechsw.com/products/dx" type="small" color="silver" newwindow="no" textalign="center"] HCL Digital Experience is one of the most secure solutions out there, trusted by 8...
Digital Solutions | January 5, 2021
What Is a Customer Experience Platform? The Last Great Experience Your Customer Has Becomes Their Expectation. You Need the Right Solution.
Customer experience (or CX as it’s commonly referred to) is an increasingly important priority for companies of all sizes. Organizations need to deliver highly contextualized experiences — not just simple websites and mobile apps — to reach customers with the right information, in the right way, every time. Business models are shifting and all us are having to adjust and adjust quickly. The last great experience a customer has now becomes their expectation — plus 96% of customers say customer service is important when choosing the brands they’re loyal to. Customers are more and more empowered in transactions as they’re able to do extensive research before buying and can closely compare between one company and their competitors. As organizations focus on providing exceptional CX, they need strong technology backing their process. That’s where a customer experience platform comes in.  What does customer experience software do?  To first understand why customer experience software is beneficial, we need to take a look at what customer experience is and why it matters so much. We know it’s an important factor in solidifying brand loyalty — but what does a solid customer experience actually look like?  It generally refers to the feeling and impression your customers are left with after they leave an interaction with your brand. This is a combination of how easy your website is to navigate, how helpful your customer support services are, how personalized the content it, how customized the experience is, and how much value they gained from your brand, services, or products itself. CX can be assessed with surveys, feedback, and churn rates.  Customer experience platform software is the technology solution an organization will use to observe, measure, handle, and improve the customer journey. These platforms serve as one-stop solutions for making sure that an organization doesn’t lose sight of important customer experience needs and initiatives, and are able to successfully meet their customer experience goals by tracking customer behavior, raising red flags...
Digital Solutions | December 15, 2020
How and Why You Should Digitize Business Processes
If it wasn’t abundantly clear before, the COVID-19 pandemic has proved that digitizing business-critical processes (and making teams productive remotely) is key to business continuity. Whether a business has 50 — or 50,000 — employees, its operations are influenced and impacted (if not completely overhauled) by technology designed to speed up, connect, improve and sustain work in the modern world. Digital transformation for enterprise organizations is a no-brainer. It’s the “how” that defines what success looks like. For some companies, embracing this digital transformation has been a gradual process of adoption.  Others have been digital all along, or they jumped in headfirst, undergoing a major overhaul all at once.  And for some it’s still an overwhelming burden, approached tentatively and perhaps even with aversion to change and new technology.  No matter the scenario, there’s little doubt, especially with remote work becoming ubiquitous, that old-school business processes that involve emailed documents and spreadsheets (or even paper-filled file cabinets) is not the way to go.  Digitizing business processes refers to the integration of digital information — pieces of physical, non-digital material that has been converted into a digital format — into an automated workflow that can replace manual, disconnected and paper-based processes.  It means digitizing business processes, increasing employee productivity, and improving customer satisfaction. It provides dramatic benefits to employees, partners, customers and the organization as a whole. Converting not just documents and data to digital, but also workflow, transactions, functions and processes, can be very complex. There are many payoffs, however. You will save time and money  Using digitized processes can free up employees from a multitude of monotonous tasks. Rather than email chains for tedious and regular processes approvals, regular and routine functions (payroll, time logs, inspection signoffs, etc.) can be routed through workflows automatically. Functions such as financial transactions, insurance claims, medical prescription processing, in-house training can be automated and make teams more productive...
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