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 | September 2, 2020
What Are Kubernetes and Docker? And Why Should They Be Part of Your Digital Solution?
Developers are becoming increasingly used to hearing the names Kubernetes and Docker in conjunction with one another. They’re both technologies associated with containers (packages of software that include all of the parts required to run an app, like the code and system libraries), but a common misconception is that they’re competing solutions. Developers might be familiar with “Kubernetes vs. Docker” discussions when, in fact, using Kubernetes with Docker is an excellent method of running containerized applications. But to understand what that means, we first have to look at what each platform does separately.  What Does Docker do?  Docker is currently the most popular container platform. In this context, containers are the solution to a classic developer dilemma: Often developers will write code that works perfectly well on their own machine, but fails when they try to implement it into the program it needs to live in. Containers are the solution to this dilemma — developers can package their code into one cohesive container image, which can then be run on any computer that also hosts a container platform.   30% of enterprise companies use Docker, and that number is steadily rising. If a developer can benefit from containerization, chances are they’ll look to Docker for their solution.  So, What Does Kubernetes Do, and How are They Related?  Now that you have a grasp on what Docker does and why it’s an important tool to be aware of, the first thing that’s important to understand about the Docker/Kubernetes relationship is that the two technologies serve fundamentally different purposes. As the Container Journal nicely put it, “Kubernetes takes containerization technology ... and turns it up to 11.”   Kubernetes arrived as a solution to the next conundrum that comes with containerization: Now that the containers exist, how can they be organized? If Docker is in charge of packaging and distributing an application, Kubernetes is in charge of scaling and monitoring those...
Digital Solutions | August 18, 2020
IBM WebSphere Portal (or IBM Digital Experience) is now HCL Digital Experience and That’s a Good Thing. It’s time to upgrade
If you’re looking for the latest version of IBM Websphere Portal you’ve come to the right place. IBM Websphere Portal (IBM Digital Experience) became HCL Digital Experience back in 2019 and since then has released two major updates making HCL Digital Experience the most flexible and compatible digital experience platform on the market today.  As HCL Digital Experience, IBM Websphere Portal, has undergone a major transformation. HCL Digital Experience built upon the legendary reliability and security of IBM Websphere Portal by adding future ready features and intuitive UI redesigns to boost productivity by up to 60% and increase your ROI by up to 661%.  The New Features in HCL Digital Experience  With these new revolutionary updates, HCL Digital Experience (DX) currently ranks highest worldwide amongst providers of web experience management solutions. When organizations partner with HCL DX, they can expect:   The Ability to Integrate all the Things!  HCL DX delivers customer-centric and personalized experiences by integrating your organization’s data, services, and workflows to fully integrate your current technology stack into Digital Experience. The new Experience API interface makes it easy to manage all your API connections in an easy drag and drop way.   New Reliable and Scalable Technology  HCL Digital Experience utilizes Docker and Kubernetes to provide rapid installation, near-zero downtime and auto-scale capabilities. The automated provisioning, load balancing, and self-healing that Kubernetes offers significantly reduce the total cost of site ownership as well. Read more on how the State of Ohio was able to utilize these new features to handle a 3000% increase in traffic.   Rock-Solid Security and SSO  Intelligence-agency-grade encryption and cross-system authentication, even while at rest, is built into the core of HCL Digital Experience. Single Sign-On (SSO) ensures that team members can be securely authenticated and jump right into their secured, protected work.   New Practitioner-Friendly Tools  HCL Digital Experience took the robust content authoring capabilities of IBM Websphere Portal and turned it up to an 11 with a new reimagined user interface that dramatically reduces the learning curve and enables content to be created in half the time. Quickly build new content that responds to the market and industry needs without having to rely on IT. As agility is an increasingly important team...
Digital Solutions | August 17, 2020
Engaging Video Content Improves Online Healthcare for All
Being at the forefront of the battle against Covid-19, health workers worldwide are working day and night, under extreme conditions, to treat infected patients and ensure the continuity of health services for their communities. While doing so, doctors, nurses, and health professionals face two unprecedented challenges. First, they need to stay continuously informed on accumulating trial treatment research and frequently changing clinic protocols for this little-known disease. Second, they must be able to do that while social distancing from their colleagues and working in small shifts to minimize contagion risk. Additionally, health providers find themselves at the tip of the spear in promoting the public's understanding and education that are essential to mitigating this crisis effectively. They need to be able to  reach their audiences online and through remote communication. Getting the Message to the Masses In times of crisis, people seek news, data, and advice and digital experiences for healthcare become more important than ever before.  Simultaneously, their attention span is limited. For this reason, emergency information must be made available and accessible yet digestible and comprehensive. Video as part of a digital engagement strategy helps overcome language and cultural barriers and simplify even the most complex and abstract information. Therefore, it's ideal for educating people on any topic, from how to put a mask properly to the symptoms indicative of Covid-19. It also strikes a deeper connection and elicits stronger emotional responses, making it more memorable and effective. Studies show that viewers retain 95% of a video's message compared to only 10% of textual information. Audiences across all generations turn to video today as their preferred method for everyday learning (68%). Providing Impactful Information at the Right Time Frequent communication and real-time response are crucial during a crisis. News has to get out quickly and be easily updated...
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