Streamlining processes, improving collaboration, supporting decision making: there’s a lot to consider when planning your digital transformation strategy. But among all these crucial operational concerns, ensuring a positive user experience is often an afterthought, at best.
However, to take full advantage of the exciting opportunities offered by the Digital Age, user experience is key. Right from the start, the ease with which people can use digital technology must be central to your approach.
Driving digital transformation
Ease of use for mobile applications is becoming increasing important for many organizations. A January 2017 commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of SAP, Maximize the Impact of Digital Transformation, identifies mobile applications as playing a crucial role in digital transformation strategies.
In a survey conducted for the study, 82% of respondents agreed with the statement “Mobile is the face of digital transformation”. Furthermore, 61% of respondents stated that their organization was deploying mobile applications to support three or more roles in their organization.
Providing a “moment of truth”
It’s clear that mobile apps are powerful tools that can help you inspire customers and enhance the purchasing experience, while streamlining your operations.
However, if you are to reap the rewards of this digital revolution, a smooth and positive user experience is vital. It’s really quite simple: if mobile applications are difficult to use, people just won’t use them.
Forrester’s study refers to the user experience, whether positive or negative, as a “moment of truth” for digital transformation. In other words, it suggests that the success or failure of digital transformation strategies can hinge on your ability to provide great user experiences.
Optimizing the user experience
So, how can your organization ensure optimum user experiences for its mobile applications?
First it’s critical to put user experience at the heart of the planning process. Developers, IT personnel, and the business staff who will actually be using the application all need to align their expectations and work together from the start of the project.
It’s also important that you don’t let user experience take a back seat to operational requirements. Just as you mustn’t ignore operational business benefits for the sake of user experience, you shouldn’t abandon user experience for the sake of operational excellence. There needs to be a balance between the two.
Simplifying business, inspiring customers
The possibilities offered by mobile applications really are endless.
Offering the right information or services at the specific time and place when they’re needed can transform the way you do business. By providing these contextual right-time experiences, or “mobile moments” as Forrester refers to them, mobile applications can help you to simplify processes, increase productivity, and dramatically boost profits.
Meanwhile, mobile applications also offer opportunities to engage more fully with customers, improving their experience of your brand and increasing loyalty. You can even provide a virtual environment that enables customers to visualize a product or service before they decide to purchase it.
For example, a sales assistant at a jewelry store may use a mobile app to demonstrate the different ways in which a customer can customize a necklace. Having decided on a range of options, the customer can then see what the finished necklace will look like before deciding whether to go ahead with the purchase.
Getting the support you need
It is easier said than done, according to the study, 40% of respondents have faced 3+ challenges while implementing a user experience strategy as part of their digital transformation initiatives. These include poor knowledge of user-experience best practices, difficulty in identifying end-user needs, and a scarcity of mobile developers.
Learn more about how you can enhance the user experience to maximise the impact of digital transformation by downloading the study by Forrester. Listen to the webinar to hear more from a guest speaker from Forrester and understand how Swiss Post is transforming UX.