Leaders share strategies to gain support for replatforming
Replatforming is often seen by companies as a “necessary evil” for their ecommerce operation: an inescapable and time-consuming project that overhauls their capabilities while impacting the day-to-day operation of their online stores. The truth is that replatforming can be a great way to guarantee your business is up to date while keeping your finger on the pulse of the industry, which can translate into future savings and operational improvements.
Even with this positive outlook, it’s not always easy to convince decision-makers that replatforming is the right thing to do. With that in mind, we asked top leaders for their best strategies to win stakeholders’ approval for replatforming.
Try to keep yourself nimble
During her participation in Digital Insider, Patricia Amaro, Global General Manager eB2B and new business platform at Reckitt, highlighted the importance of being able to transform a company on a global level.
“From a company perspective we need to be able to transform on a global level. If you are corporate, be corporate, and usually they have amazing projects in different markets, but they have a hard time spreading it to other markets because they start to face the paradigms of scale versus innovation.”Patricia Amaro, Global General Manager eB2B and new business platform at Reckitt
Amaro says that this sort of global perspective prepares companies to be future-proof and keep transforming. Oftentimes, this comes at the expense of replatforming projects, which allow businesses to be flexible and find scalability at the same time. “No one size fits all,” she warns.
Likewise, Jeremiah King, Director at Motorola eCommerce & Lenovo Customer eService, thinks this “global perspective” should always be ready to produce the core of a digital asset that will later be geolocalized through platform migrations if necessary, since this can make the difference for a successful initiative in the long term.
“That way you get the best of both worlds: you get a little bit more global governance so you can have a consistent brand experience, but you still allow that flexibility within the geos in this hub and spoke model.”Jeremiah King, Director at Motorola eCommerce & Lenovo Customer eService
Don’t consider yourself “digitally mature”
The recent “rush to digital” brought on by the lockdown faced most companies with the reality of their own pre-pandemic digital operations. Some of them were surprised to find that these were not as solid as they had assessed themselves. Generally, this illusion of confidence is one of the main reasons why companies don’t look into migration efforts.
Amaro advices not to consider yourself a “digitally-mature company,” since it’s really difficult to set a level of what that means, not to mention it depends on the company’s industry and business model and quickly changes over time.
“It’s important to prepare for the future, because you never know when it’ll come, and when it comes you need to be ready. I think this is the difference that you really can sense today from companies that managed to make gains or survive better during the COVID-19 pandemic. We need to prepare for the future even if we think it’ll take long to get there.”Patricia Amaro, Global General Manager eB2B and new business platform at Reckitt
King also signals the process of continuous optimization as the moment when solutions really start to scale and bring something extra to an adaptable company’s value proposition.
“We’re really understanding what our value stream is and what’s the value we’re delivering to the customer. Having those continuous feedback loops all the way through the process allows us to continue optimizing the experience for each customer and move it from satisfaction to delight.”Jeremiah King, Director at Motorola eCommerce & Lenovo Customer eService
Diversify your input
The future of a company doesn’t depend just on replatforming or on being open to change, but on conducting a series of actions that can make a company more future-ready. One of the most important ways to achieve this, perhaps, is by diversifying the profiles and backgrounds of employees inside the company.
“The biggest problem in large corporations is that they tend to have people with the same mindsets and similar career paths. In the end they don’t incentivize people to be different or think differently, this means that even when you know you have to change, you can’t do it.”Patricia Amaro, Global General Manager eB2B and new business platform at Reckitt
Having the right mindsets leading the project, says Amaro, is the most important step in moving potential changes from intellectual discussions and strategic planning to actual tactical changes inside organizations. King also thinks this is one of the most important decisions when it comes to scaling what’s already working on a smaller level.
“If you look at what the recent months have taught us, there’s this renewed interest in technology, and one of the things we’re starting to realize is that we have to be more judicious with our capacity, talent we’re going after and what architectural decisions we’re making.”Jeremiah King, Director at Motorola eCommerce & Lenovo Customer eService
Replatforming is just one of the most visible change processes that companies have to undertake from time to time. Being ready for it is one way of training a company to be more adaptable, which, like our experts told us, is one of the most important advantages in today’s market.
Change, long feared by companies around the world, might be the easiest way to bring on a better tomorrow.