While composable architecture provides great flexibility and opportunities to build very flexible best-of-breed solutions, it brings unintended but real challenges to backend operators of an Ecommerce site.
While all solutions are morphed into consistent customer experience with a headless storefront implementation, in the back office, well, let’s face it, we have several s/w components implemented by different vendors with different approaches to UI and quite often duplicated functionality and data.
There is an argument that a marketing team only works in marketing components, while a merchandising team is working with PIM. That may be the case in very large organizations, but in smaller teams, there are jacks of all trades that daily use multiple systems, sometimes for completing a single task.
Even if we narrow the discussion to a single job function, let’s say merchandising, in most cases, employees still need to work in more than one system, learn different interfaces, and understand which system has a master copy of the data and why they are out of sync.
In the worst case, the same data (with slight modifications to satisfy different validation criteria) need to be updated in multiple systems.
Why does it matter?
- Productivity. Inconsistent backend interfaces with duplicated functionality and data greatly impact employee productivity and the quality of results.
- Low level of employee satisfaction. Happy people work better and stay longer with the organization.
- Customer impact. Sooner or later, the backend mess shows its ugly face to customers. Have you ever been on a customer support call where you were put on hold several times while an agent was looking for your order status? Chances are that they need to log into multiple systems to really understand what is going on while a frustrated customer is waiting on the other end of the line.
What can you do about it?
- Map your internal systems, user journeys, and roles of employees who use it
- Identify the most time-consuming operations, the slowest systems, and where double entry of data is required.
- Focus your efforts on reducing the number of systems required per employee journey. Eliminating the double entry of data should be the first priority.
- When introducing a new s/w, analyze its impact from the employee’s perspective. What operations will be affected, and which roles? How do you minimize the impact? It is very important to do it when developing and deploying a new system, not after the fact.