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May 20, 2020

Digital Channels - is your IT architecture ready?

Nicholas Gimenes
Growth & Product Marketing Leader

*article in collaboration with Rafael Rocha and Lucas Ferrari, from Sensedia's solutions team.

Covid-19 impacts on consumer behavior

Since the beginning of coronavirus quarantines in Brazil, retailers have been feeling the impact of changing consumer behavior, favoring interactions via digital channels and preventing the growth of contagions.

According to a survey conducted in the USA, retailers offering an omnichannel experience have been overcoming the losses of physical sales with the sales of their digital channels.

This trend towards digitalization in retail is urgent with the challenges imposed by the pandemic. Delivering an experience is evolving towards an ecosystem of channels and partners, whose support requires a modern integration architecture, capable of enabling an action between channels and partners in an integrated, secure, monitored and scalable way.

Benefits of digital channels for business

The use of digital channels, supported by a prepared IT architecture, promotes decisive business benefits:

  • Greater scalability and channel reach
  • More convenience for customers
  • Cost savings with traditional channels
  • Ease of innovation and adaptation to new business models

Challenges in IT architectures when adopting Digital Channels

Despite the advantages in adopting and optimizing digital channels, many companies face challenges related to IT architecture:

  • Legacy systems, with complex and hybrid scenario
  • Scalability, security and extensibility restrictions
  • Lack of unified visibility
  • Little agility to implement changes

IT Architecture for Digital Channels - Functional view

To enable a digital channel strategy, overcoming the challenges above, a mediation layer that uses modern models of integration between channels and backend is required, which will offer the following functional capabilities:

  • Real-time channel monitoring (with technical and business metrics)
  • Security mechanisms
  • Scalability and availability of services
  • Agility (Event-driven)
  • Hybrid / Cloud-native
  • Adaptive governance controls

IT Architecture for Digital Channels - Technology base

This modern mediation and integration layer is technologically based on APIs, microservices/service mesh, event orientation and connectors for communication with legacy and with various systems and protocols. The implementation and management of this layer can be carried out by Sensedia Platform, with specific modules for modern integrations:

The main modules that make up Sensedia Modern Integration Platform are:

Sensedia Consulting Playbook – Digital Channels

In addition to using the Sensedia Platform, our consultancy team implements a playbook based on Lean Inception, which also includes activities such as:

  • Use of agile methodology for API development
  • Training of development and operation teams to evolve and sustain the integration layer that supports digital channels
  • Reference architecture framework and API based models on previous project experiences
  • on previous project experiences
  • Definition of KPIs for technical and business dashboards
  • Connector configuration for different systems, databases and protocols

Through our integration platform and consultancy, Sensedia helps its clients to create a modern integration layer, connecting the legacy and speeding up the activation and optimization of digital channels, in addition to providing:

  • Reduction of time-to-value for digital strategy
  • Higher productivity, less use of resources and allocation of senior client employees
  • Application of best practices and knowledge transfer
  • Insights acquired for innovation and metrics aimed at continuous improvement
  • Mitigation of risks, optimization and alignment of technology with the business
  • Customer success team with Sensedia experts, available for customer support
  • Environments and tools for quick experimentation of APIs, building and validating MVPs

Sensedia Cases – Digital Channels Enablement

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