In this 2 part series, we wanted to provide some insights and advice which we feel might help you choose the right Episerver partner; one that not only has the technology expertise with regards to the platform but also has the vision and capabilities to help you define your project vision to drive your business forward.
In this 2 part one we highlighted the importance of choosing a partner with the right level of knowledge and experience with Episerver. We examined why you should look to agencies that develop ON Episerver, rather than around it, and finally, we discussed why it’s crucial to only consider partners that have the skills, resources and innovation to create a comprehensive strategy that delivers measureable business results.
If you haven’t already, you can read ‘Selecting The Best Episerver Partner – Part 1’ here.
As mentioned in part one, experience with Episerver should undoubtedly be a priority when considering a potential partner. Taking this a step further, we believe you should consider how important Digital Commerce is within your current or future plans.
Although there are many agencies with great knowledge and experience with Episerver CMS / Digital Marketing, there are not so many who can claim to have delivered on the digital commerce version of the platform. With digital commerce continuing to grow at exceptional rates, there are increasing opportunities to monetise online real estate, to deliver enhanced online self-service and to drive business efficiencies at the same time.
We have a high level of expertise in implementing Episerver Commerce, which we believe is vital as this platform really comes into its own in complex commerce scenarios.
Whether this is via straight retail, subscription led recurring revenue models or service related payments the Episerver Commerce platform offers exceptional support for the enterprise. Layer on top of that the inherent ability to deliver “Content & Commerce” and Episerver begins to offer outstanding support for digital commerce campaigns. Integrating with marketing platforms such as IBM Marketing cloud offers great opportunities for “conversational commerce” (more on this later).
We have developed intricate Episerver Commerce projects across many sectors such as travel, membership, education and training, subscription based services, manufacuturing and retail. If you see digital commerce in the immediate future then dig deep on your partner research for Commerce experience. If you don’t – should you?
The Episerver partner network boasts some of the most impressive agencies around. In almost all cases, they will be able to present a highly impressive digital strategy / vision and creative approach to inspire you and your customers. However, they should be able to provide clear evidence of the technical and project delivery skills to get that vision off the ground.
At Engage we’ve invested heavily to build the right blend of strategy, creative, technical and project delivery. Our team of specialists have repeatedly demonstrated the software muscle and system integration know-how, to deliver on large-scale and technically dense projects.
In the last 18 months, we have worked on a range of complex and impressive projects that depend upon serious specialist capabilities:
The banking and finance sector is one which calls for heavy compliance, governance and security credibility. We passed this test with PTSB and successfully integrated with the back office and call centre systems for application for credit and loans and for account set up, which enabled better, more efficient customer service.
Integration to a utility provider’s back office is no mean feat and, in this case, we were able to hook into a heavyweight Oracle DB system to facilitate enhanced customer service and self-service; billing and meter reading. This project was delivered within just 18 weeks through collaboration with group IT to scope, develop and integrate to custom APIs.
For Creation, we integrated Episerver and IBM Marketing Cloud with the credit management decision-making suite at one of the world’s largest banks, enabling them to transform the way they deliver credit in some of the UK’s largest high street and online retail brands. Since delivery, just last month, this system has had a huge positive impact for (Creation and its clients / partners) and, of course, we’ll be discussing the outcome in an upcoming blog post.
We understand that digital channels give us the opportunity to deliver service more effectively, efficiently and in more rewarding ways for customers than ever before, but this falls down (especially with larger, longer standing enterprises with legacy systems in place) without the software development skills to make the online and back office worlds play nicely together. This is why we’ve recruited heavily from traditional software development sectors where performance, security and resilience are paramount.
An Episerver partner’s approach to delivery is fundamental to the success of any project and requires a developed understanding and application of design models and delivery methodology.
Engage, as an agency, is absolutely focused on adopting agile principles and blending them with the structure and governance of the traditional Waterfall design model. This allows us to design “enough” up front to offer appropriate levels of certainty about our project delivery. Simultaneously, we maintain the innovative and collaborative spirit of the agile approach, which drives us to design and develop optimum solutions.
By taking time to focus on project feasibility and foundations we can move into a series of time-boxed sprints delivering iterative enhancements on the solution. This gives our clients the ability to fix timeframes and budget confidently, but it is also flexible enough to allow us (our you the client) the option the pivot along the way. By designing for an welcoming change, we believe the outputs of our work will be much greater and by focusing more on beautiful working software than heavy, long winded technical documentation we get there faster.
At the outset of any project, we invest heavily in understanding your business from a commercial and technical point of view. Where are the opportunities and how do we make them a reality. By rapidly developing the foundations for the project (understanding, vision, technical feasibility, budget and a collaborative environment) we move into a series of iterative design, develop, deliver “sprints”.
Episerver is a great platform. It does what it does really well – but by their own admission (and design) it doesn’t do everything a savvy CMO may need. This is where the Episerver partner eco-system has worked really well for us and our clients.
We partner with leading technology providers to deliver integrated capabilities for traditional email marketing or automated marketing strategy, CRM / lead management and mobile engagement solutions on site optimisation and many other enhancement and extension services.
Examples of platforms that we recommend include integration with IBM Marketing Cloud, Copernica and Optimizley amongst others.
You’re looking for an Episerver partner to deliver your project – right? We don’t think so. At Engage, we believe you are looking for a true partner who will help you deliver your Episerver project and then work with you to deliver Digital Success.
At Engage, we have developed some incredibly strong relationships with our clients based on our commitment to make their vision a reality and our commitment to deliver. We are invested in our clients’ digital progress and prosperity as they are. Whether a startup with big plans and relatively small budgets or an enterprise with plans to transform their digital delivery – we are just as excited and committed to making that happen. We believe your digital partner should be as committed and excited to your project as you and the extent to which this is true will shape the success and future of your digital vision.