When customer digital expectations are changing faster than your product skin (short opinion)

When customer digital expectations are changing faster than your product skin (short opinion) 802 600 ASPIRO

Cases ranging from smart banking and trading apps through reporting tools to customer zones

COVID-19 pandemic has concentrated into two years what usually would be a decade-long digital adoption. It also sets new standards, when customers are getting digital experience in one industry, and almost instantly expect it everywhere else.

This means that expectations in digital worlds are set by the digital leaders not necessary from the same industry, and others have to quickly follow. Or face gradual decline in customer satisfaction and eventually loss of interest in the service.

From company perspective, this of course presents a bit of a challenge. It is already clear to everyone that being digital is a must, as countless studies have shown and suggested (though “digital” often means something different for each company, for some still just a buzz word). The problem that many companies face is that upgrades of their digital functionalities, interfaces, UX, …you name it… are in “pre-COVID mode”. Although most often already boosted to a certain degree, still build on historic (though not necessarily obsolete) infrastructure and with speed and flexibility in deployment set by standard of pre-COVID years.

But customer’s expectations are running full speed ahead, driven by digital best-in-class practices adopted across industries. Thus, improving customer digital interfaces and functionalities built on infrastructure and logic of past years may prove to be difficult, costly and lengthy. Especially, when they need to match the pace of changing customer expectations.

First thing is to have clear understanding what needs to be done in a digital space. Challenge of its own and only customers will eventually judge whether done rightly (and whether they will engage again, or not). Translating the business needs into clear business and technical requirements, is another step that very often “somehow” gets lost in translation between business and IT side (curse of its own…). But that’s another topic, some thoughts about it here.

And finally, once new shiny digital capability is eventually released out for the customers, well, it might be already not up to the date (or CX of it). Because digital trends and customer expectations has already (again) moved ahead.

Thus, for companies it is time to shift to second (or already even to third) gear in digital capabilities build-up and pay attention to two things. First, to be able to deliver quick fixes with incremental improvements that are up to speed with changing digital standards. Second, to work in the background on more complex upgrades that will support future digital capabilities brought to customer swiftly and adjusted flexibly during the time. This includes also re-evaluating of already ongoing major upgrades and making sure that they fulfill these conditions.

This seems to be a rather new normal modus operandi that companies need to adopt. Or risk to be slowly left behind by those who might have started bit later but from the beginning built the digital capabilities with required flexibility in mind.

Samuel Sulík

Director at Aspiro

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