Learn How to Put Customers First at Liferay Symposium NA

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This post was written by Angela Wu and appeared here first on Liferay.com.

A Conversation with Customers: Liferay Digital Experience Platform

As digital transformation continues to inform the way we live, work, and play, we expect companies and brands to understand what we’re looking for. Businesses have a great opportunity to hear their customers, understand the problems they face, and give them the right solution to make their lives easier. But, do most companies have an idea of how to listen to their customers?

In a recent interview with CMS Connected, Bryan Cheung, CEO, shared how listening to customers sparked Liferay’s progression into the digital experience market with the launch ofLiferay Digital Experience Platform (DXP). In Liferay’s case, transformation was not so much disruptive as it was natural, given its portal heritage, which already had laid out integrations with backend systems and the framework to drive personalized customer experience.

A Better Direction for Customer Experience

The unique infrastructure of Liferay DXP can help build a range of customer experience solutions including web, mobile, and hybrid online/offline experiences across the entire customer lifecycle. In addition, having a single view of the customer lets companies create better, more relevant interactions down the line and gets all departments working together to care for customers.

In this retail banking example, a teller displays a singular customer view. In one page, the teller can see relevant, current information, i.e., the latest conversation between the customer and the bank (wherever it might have been), gathered from multiple systems across the organization. Based on this customer view, the teller can then make intelligent suggestions to the customer and give the bank an opportunity to offer related or complementary services.
Single Customer View on Liferay Digital Experience Platform
Cheung also shared that Liferay DXP isn’t just about connecting surface level interactions. The whole point of Liferay DXP is to let businesses work smarter at what they do—without having to start all over. In this way, businesses gain another opportunity to engage, provide self-service, engender loyalty, and repeat purchases through all customer interactions.

A Natural Fit for Digital Experience Management

Over the past 15 years, Cheung notes that Liferay has set out to make technology work better for people:

“We see Liferay Digital Experience Platform as the next logical step in our evolution as a company, and I hope that we’ve done a good job listening to your needs as we’ve designed our product.”

As customers drive how they interact with brands, companies need to stay ahead of the curve with tools that deliver personalized digital experiences wherever, whenever they engage with your business.

Veriday Announces Sponsorship at Liferay Symposium North America 2016

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Digital business technology event will showcase Veriday’s expertise and services

Chicago, IL – (June 9th, 2016) – Veriday, a digital marketing and technology company, and Liferay Platinum partner, announced today its participation as a Gold Sponsor at this year’s Liferay Symposium North America. Hosted by Liferay, which makes software that helps companies create digital experiences on web, mobile and connected devices, Liferay Symposium North America will take place from September 26th to 27th in Chicago. This premier event for Liferay’s customers, digital business leaders, partners and community developers in North America will include two days of expert sessions, hands-on workshops, networking opportunities, access to Liferay’s top executives and architects, and keynotes from digital experience thought leaders.

“We are happy to have Veriday join us at this year’s Liferay Symposium North America. Our partners play an important role in Liferay’s success and having Veriday at our event brings added value to our attendees looking to meet the industry’s top-level enterprise technology vendors,” said Brian Kim, Chief Operating Officer for Liferay.

For more about the Liferay Symposium North America and to register, visit the event website.  As a Gold Sponsor, and Platinum partner, we are pleased to offer passes at a discounted rate.  Please contact us for details.

For more information about Liferay, visit www.liferay.com.

About Veriday:

Veriday is a Digital Marketing and Technology company, and Liferay Platinum Partner. Veriday specializes in developing products, solutions and methods to transform online user experiences and engagement.  Our professional services and development teams help organizations reach their employee, customer and member’s digital needs by creating portals and websites that transform their business. Our portals have an amazing reputation for fostering communication, engagement and collaboration, and creating unique online experiences built for blue chip brands.


About Liferay:

Liferay makes software that helps companies create digital experiences on web, mobile and connected devices. Our platform is open source, which makes it more reliable, innovative and secure. We try to leave a positive mark on the world through business and technology. Companies such as Adidas, Carrefour, Cisco Systems, Danone, Fujitsu, Lufthansa Flight Training, Siemens, Société Générale and the United Nations use Liferay. Visit us at www.liferay.com.

 

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Contact:

Veriday Inc.

Kayla Shaw

888.706.2817

connect@veriday.com

Twitter: @VeridayHQ

 

Liferay, Inc.

Rebecca Shin

1-877-LIFERAY

pr@liferay.com

Twitter: @Liferay

4 Benefits of a Content Management System (CMS)

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According to TechTarget, a content management system (SMS) is a system used to manage the content of a website. Using a CMS to power your website could be one of the best investments you make for your website and business. Although, a CMS can be a steep investment, it can also be a great asset to your business in the long run.

In a digitally-centric world, your organizations website is one of your main communication tools with your clients, prospects, and the rest of the digital world – so you want to make sure your audience loves your website. CMS is a web program that allows users to easily create, modify and maintain content from a single interface. Below are 4 benefits of investing in a CMS for your organizations website.

  1. Boosts productivity

Have you ever had to go through your IT department to make a change to your organization’s website? Something as simple as adding a new blog post, changing an image, or updating information? Going through this process can be daunting as it has to go through several people in your organization to make the simplest changes.A good CMS is user friendly and enables people, including those without a coding background, to make changes quickly. Having a good CMS helps boost your organizations productivity levels by streamlining website changes (and more).

  1. Allows multiple users

In an organization, there are many employees who have input into your website – the creative director, marketing team, developers, and so on. A CMS makes it easy to manage different roles and permissions for each user, whether they need to produce and publish blog posts for your content marketing efforts, give your website a fresh new look, or change the layout entirely.

  1. It’s easy to use for the non-technically minded

Not everyone has the same skills and comfort level with technology. Working with a CMS allows those without a design or developing background to easily create functional pages and update them periodically without having to depend on back-end developers. CMS functions like writing and publishing content are easy to grasp for everyone, so you don’t have to worry about spending too much time on training.

  1. Easier access to content

According to SER Group, businesses spend 30% of their working time searching for “locked up” information. With so much time being spent searching for that information, an organizations profitability and efficiency decreases. A CMS makes it simple to share, reuse and search for content throughout the system, ensuring that the data is available to everyone who needs it. This heightens the effectiveness of your employees and helps in decreasing total costs for your organization.

Although there are many benefits that a CMS can bring to your organization, not all CMS systems are effective.

3 Key Benefits for Digital Experience Platforms

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This post was written by Christine Reyes and appeared here first on Liferay.com.

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Business processes driven by customer needs are more than a popular trend; they are the driving factor behind successful digital transformation and company culture shifts.

Digital experience platforms are designed for companies that understand the importance of breaking down silos and bringing together data and channels in a way that can be shared among business units. Common features include analytics, customer context views, personalization and multichannel support.

Their goal is to enable companies to manage the elements of exceptional experiences with a clear view of business analytics, integration, comprehensive customer data and cost-effective implementation. Further benefits of digital experience platforms to digital businesses include the following:

1. Identify immediate needs in digital customer experience

As digital business becomes more personalized and unified across devices, it becomes increasingly important to interact with people at every stage of the customer lifecycle. Sophisticated data management streamlines the process of identifying customer pain points or gaps in communication, which can then be leveraged to improve digital experiences. This prioritizes what customers want without locking companies down to any specific technology or type of interaction.

Once companies identify immediate needs in digital customer experience, they can act on them from a place of knowledge, rather than trying to build strategies off of incomplete data. A digital experience platform will then be able to provide tools or integrate with the correct external products to address these needs.

2. Improve the accuracy of your marketing and customer engagement through holistic customer data and information

The first step to improving experiences is to offer the omnichannel interaction, and the second step is to constantly track, measure and analyze so that customer engagement can grow and evolve.

Digital experience platforms allow companies to track customer behavior at each digital touchpoint. As the Internet of Things (IoT) grows, companies will have access to more channels of customer data, enabling them to draw new insights. The goal is to discover patterns in customer behavior and constantly improve customers’ experiences, even before they ask for it.

Customer data can include basic contact information, demographic snapshots, psychographic data points such as details about personalities or lifestyles, transactional data, communications history with the brand, account preferences, responses to marketing campaigns, and site engagement tracked through clicks, browsing time and social media shares.

A digital experience platform will pull this data into one place that each department can access as needed through customized views. This ensures that the entire company is working with consistent, updated information and basing decisions on accurate, holistic insights.

3. Use integration and flexible architecture to stay on the cutting-edge of digital trends

A common burden of technology upgrades is the unforeseen costs when development takes longer or is more complex than planned. If a digital experience platform achieves an effective level of integration and flexibility, then it will be cost-effective over time.

Veterans of digital change know that a technology upgrade can take months or even years. Sometimes, by the time you get the technology and strategy right, the trend is in its last days and the industry leaders are already gearing up for the next change. This makes it risky to pursue any new digital trend, because it may have evaporated by the time your company finally gets the fancy new software configured for your needs.

In today’s quickly changing digital environment, vendor lock-in is a handicap, and any digital experience platform should also make it easy to integrate with outside products, not just the vendor’s own offerings.

Because a digital experience platform starts with the core components in one place and product, it would be a cost-effective, long-term investment that mitigates the risk in acting on a digital trend. This could potentially level the playing field for companies that don’t have the largest budget, provided they have the foresight and agility to respond to the shifting sands of the market.

Final Thoughts

A digital experience platform provides the capabilities that you need to produce a variety of user-facing experiences. The exact tools offered will differ by vendor, and it is up to companies to assess their goals and determine which components are required for their strategy. However, the unifying principle for digital experience platforms will remain the same: architecture that integrates core business tools and provides a foundation for future digital innovation.

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DXP: Digital Experience Platform

Read more about the digital transformation and how you can create customer-first digital experiences. Download Liferay’s Digital Experience Platform whitepaper.

A Conversation with Customers: Liferay Digital Experience Platform

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This post was authored by Bryan Cheung and appeared here first on Liferay.com.

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The internet has changed the way we live because it gives everyone an equal voice in a global conversation. No matter who you are or where you live, you can make yourself heard, whether by contributing to Wikipedia, creating a video that goes viral on social media, or corresponding personally with people and organizations around the world.

And yet it still seems like so much shouting is going on, and not enough listening. One of the areas we see this is with companies and how they interact with their customers.

As companies, we have a bigger opportunity than ever before to hear our customers—to understand the problems they face, and give them the right solution to make their lives easier. That might be your next great product, but it might also be a simple phone call or email giving them some advice or help.

Unfortunately, too many companies today are overloading their customers with emails, offers, and content that reflect the company’s priorities rather than meeting the customer’s needs. These companies see digital technology as just another channel through which to talk at their customers.

That’s why we are happy to announce today the launch of Liferay Digital Experience Platform (DXP). With Liferay DXP, we asked ourselves, “How can we help companies do a better job of listening?” Liferay DXP helps your customers have a conversation with you, to make their needs heard and give you a chance to meet them.

It’s also important for the customer’s feedback to make an impact on your actual business operations. Liferay DXP isn’t just about surface level interactions. With our portal heritage, we’re able to integrate those interactions into your business operations, updating customer records, getting workflows going, and sending up-to-date information back to the customer.

And finally, in a world where customer data is increasingly being treated as a commodity to monetize, Liferay DXP seeks to give companies the tools needed to handle their customer’s data securely and sensitively. We want to encourage properly handling and processing data in a way that’s right by the customer.

Over the past 15 years, Liferay has been trying to find ways to make technology work better for people. As an open source company, we made sure the software we built met the needs of real users and customers. As a portal provider, we did this by matching people to the content and applications that suited their role in an organization.

And while making things friendly and easy for regular people, we also made sure to adhere to the stringent security requirements of our toughest customers.

We see Liferay Digital Experience Platform as the next logical step in our evolution as a company, and I hope that we’ve done a good job listening to your needs as we’ve designed our product.

 

Here’s Liferay’s official press release.

 

Recap of the 4th Liferay User Group Meetup

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Veriday hosted the 4th Liferay User Group Meetup on May 3rd, 2016 at our office location. It was a successful evening full of insightful presentations and great company. A big thanks you to all of our clients and guests for joining us.

The 4th Liferay User Group Meetup

For those of you who missed it, the Liferay User Group covered the following presentations:

Kendra Flugeman, Account Executive from Liferay, spoke about the release of the highly anticipated Liferay Digital Experience Platform (Liferay DXP). The new platform is designed to help companies create and manage experiences that support end-to-end customer relationships. Liferay DXP will help digital innovation leaders to assemble a comprehensive view of the customer from separate systems, uses that insight to improve customer interactions, and integrates those interactions to the company’s operations.

Next up we had Eric Kirby, a Sales Engineer at Liferay, who walked us through a live demonstration of the new Liferay DXP Platform. If you’d like to see a demonstration of the new platform, please contact us and we will be happy to show you what the new platform is all about.

Lastly, Chris Lamoureux, COO of Veriday, and Gunther Bassler, Senior Solutions Consultant at Veriday, discussed the considerations that should be taken into account when deciding whether to upgrade to the new Liferay DXP; to upgrade or not to upgrade, that is the question. Chris and Gunther discussed when it would be a good idea to stay on Liferay 6.2, and in what scenarios it would be more effective to upgrade to DXP.

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For more information on any of the presentations, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Stay tuned for details on our next Liferay User Group Meetup, or sign up for our newsletter to receive updates right to your inbox.

Business Uses and Benefits of Intranets & Extranets: Part 2

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According to techopedia, an extranet is a controlled private network allowing customers, partners, vendors, suppliers and other businesses to gain information. Extranets make communicating simple for individuals inside and outside of an organization.

Keep in mind that intranets are also a controlled private network, except access is only given to individuals within an organization.

In this 2-part series, we will walk through what intranets and extranets are, how they differ, and how they can benefit your business.

What is an extranet?Visual diagram of the intranet and extranet spectrum

Extranets are an expansion of your intranet. They are private networks designed to allow certain individuals outside of your company to communicate with members within your organization in a secure and private virtual space. To put it simply, it is an extension of your intranet that you make available to users outside of your organization.  Generally, organizations will use extranets for:

  • Customer service through distributing personalized information to customers in a more efficient way
  • Training and education for new employees
  • Communicating and connecting with customers in a more controlled setting
  • Easing project management tasks by providing a workspace with access to common online documents for teams

Why should I invest in an extranet?

Extranets act as a system of engagement for your business’s prospective clients. Just as intranets can increase employee engagement, extranets expand to engage individuals outside of your organization too. There are many benefits that a business can reap from an extranet including:

For Customers (extranet):

  • Improves your collaboration with customers, clients, and partners by providing personalized and specific pieces of information to specific groups.
  • Easy access to relevant information for consumers through FAQ’s, company and product details, and more
  • Present customized and exclusive content or offers to your customers in a secure way.
  • Make information available to consumers on a variety of devices
  • Shorter time from business to consumer by eliminating communication barriers
  • Builds customer loyalty and improves customer experience by providing additional channels for communication
  • Improved customer service and experience by allowing customers and users to resolve their own queries.

For Employees (intranet and extranet):

  • Increased productivity by making information more accessible to employees
  • Reduced margin of error by centralizing company information
  • More effective collaboration by easing department-to-department communication
  • Cost effective by cutting overhead costs and streamlining work practices
  • More efficient communication of internal job opportunities

Using an extranet in the Real World

We know that an extranet is an extension of an intranet. It’s the part of the intranet that outsiders can use. The Bank of Veriday (BoV) has invested in an intranet and an extranet. They are able to share all of their internal information with employees within the institution. When their customers log in online to check on their personal banking, they are logging into BoV’s extranet, which provides them with selective information that was made available to them. Extranets are still closed off to the general public and require some type of authentication.

An extranet can help give your company an edge over the competition.  Extranets help streamline processes, workflows, and business functions, while cutting your overhead costs.

 

To learn more about intranets, check out Part 1 of the series!

Increase Employee Engagement Using An Intranet

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What is all of this hype around employee engagement and why is it so important to your business?

Employee engagement is a vital element of a successful and productive workplace. As most leaders probably realize, there is a direct relationship between how engaged employees are in their jobs and the financial success of an organization.

There are many things that we could talk about in connection to employee engagement but these studies (among hundreds others) establish the relationship and speak to the importance of employee engagement and your businesses’ bottom line:

  • Research by Gallup has concluded that when employees are engaged at work they are more productive, and drive higher levels of profitability. Yet, according to the Gallup State of The Workplace report, worldwide, only 13% of employees are engaged, meaning the other 87% are not engaged at their work.
  • According to Dale Carnegie Training, companies with engaged employees outperform those without by up to 202%.
  • The costs of low engagement aren’t limited to turnover and recruitment. Gallup found that actively disengaged employees cost the U.S. $450 billion to $550 billion per year

Clearly, employee engagement matters. The drivers of employee engagement are complex; from involvement in decision making to effective internal communication, to being valued and involved. In this series of articles, we will look at how many organizations have explored how social and digital technologies can address the challenge of employee engagement.

In comes…. the Intranet.

The concept of the Intranet is a closed and secure network within the scope of a company or business which cannot be accessed from outside.   It is an internal website that allows employees to easily share and discuss information within their company or organization. An intranet is basically an internal database, which every employee can access, with different permissions for various roles. It is a place where employees are engaged in online collaborations, leaders actively participate in dialogue with their teams, and the interaction drives higher ROI.

One of the keys to success in business is to have a connected, integrated and involved employee base. When employees are disengaged, dislocated and misinformed it can lead to poor performance and unengaged workforce that ultimately impacts your bottom line. However, low employee engagement is not a simple problem to fix. But, what does this have to do with an Intranet?

Increasing employee engagement has become one of the central purposes for company’s implementing intranets because they help to solve the challenges of connectedness, integration, and involvement.  An employee intranet promotes employee engagement by offering tools that foster peer-to-peer collaboration and employee participation. The following diagram, courtesy of Worldwide Intranet Challenge, identifies key business reasons for having an intranet. At the core of this diagram is the assumption that the primary purpose of an intranet is to help employees do their job more effectively. From this central assumption, there are 8 key business drivers that can be addressed by having a corporate intranet.

 

Using Your Intranet to Boost Employee Engagement: Part 1

Liferay Enterprise vs. Liferay Community: What are the differences?

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Liferay is the most innovative, fully functional open source portal product available in the market. Leading companies and organizations worldwide are using Liferay’s portal software for their business solutions. For a look into Liferay’s customer base, check out this article on who is using this technology.

Liferay offers two different editions: Liferay Portal Community Edition (CE) and Liferay Portal Enterprise Edition (EE).  So, what is the main difference? Below we will discuss the main differences and use cases for both editions.

Liferay Enterprise Edition (EE)

Liferay Portal Enterprise Edition is the commercial version of Liferay’s portal technologies. The Enterprise Edition is a paid portal, which provides an enterprise license from Liferay with ongoing feature updates and full service support. Liferay EE is the ideal choice for small and large enterprises, performance, or security critical applications.

Liferay EE is all about innovative technologies. Created for the Enterprise, Liferay EE provides a virtual space where you can centralize, share, and collaborate. Liferay EE has a wide range of functionalities which covers your business needs, and can also be customized where needed. Hardened for security and designed to be rock solid stable, Liferay Enterprise is offered with a subscription and support package, allowing organizations to build their portals on a stable version of the product that is offered over an extended period of time.

A Liferay Portal Enterprise Subscription provides customers with access to professionally supported software, online services and additional access to features and services within the Liferay ecosystem. With an Enterprise subscription, you receive direct access to engineering-grade technical support, security and bug fixes, training and support tools, as well as additional features within Liferay.

To check out more information on the Liferay Enterprise Edition, or learn about its features, click here.

Liferay Community Edition (CE)

Liferay Community Edition is the standard, free community version of Liferay. Liferay CE is mostly used for smaller, less critical deployments. The main difference between the two is that the Community Edition is free and is distributed “as is”. Liferay Community is available to the public and all users have access to source code in order to add to or customize the application as needed. The Liferay CE Edition provides you the flexibility to link Liferay with your own code in your portlet, theme, hook, layout, and Extension or web plugins, no matter what license you use for your code.

The Liferay Community Edition is for those who don’t need or want to commit to a Liferay subscription but still want access to the latest features and updates at no additional cost.

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It can be difficult to determine which edition is best for your business’ particular needs. The edition that is best fit for your organization depends entirely on what tasks and goals you are looking to accomplish with your portal technology. Drop us a line and we’d be happy to discuss which edition would help you meet your needs. 

What is a Web Portal and Why Should you Care?

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This post was authored by Martin Yan and originally appeared here on Liferay.com

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That’s a question we get often when we tell people what we do.

Answers can range anywhere from a quick pitch like “a tool that allows people to build their websites” to something more specific like “a framework for integrating information, people and processes across organizational boundaries.” (Thanks, Wikipedia)

Though true, those answers don’t always address the questions people are asking. Namely, how can a portal help me serve my customers?

Since the modern shopping experience mostly resides within the Internet, it is very crucial to have a strong web presence. With a public site often times serving as the main source of knowledge about your brand, portals could function as a means of first discovery that connects the right people to the right content.

But why a portal, and not some other development tool or platform?

Portals are special in the sense that they offer a fine-tuned content delivery system. Depending on the type of user that arrives on your site, you can create unique channels with images, text and other site functions that are relevant to that specific user.

So, let’s say you were a fashion company. With a proper portal system, a female shopper and a male employee, upon logging in, would find particular content that is useful to them—this is essentially the boiled-down idea of personalization.

We will see more utility for the portal as it continues to evolve in both form and function. Portals aren’t just systems of record anymore, as they are now being used as systems of engagement to reach different target groups across various channels. This is why we believe portals are poised to become the most personal way to help businesses connect with their customers, employees and partners.