Will Your Shopping Cart Stay Upright In The Upcoming Holidays (US 2021)

As peak shopping season approaches, COVID-19 continues to impede store operations, making the reliability of your eCommerce site more important than ever. Having a plan to quickly detect, respond, investigate, fix, and test issues, and the right technology to support that plan, is critical for this year's peak sales period. Attend this session as Prashant Darisi, VP of CEM Business Solutions at Everbridge discusses - - How to implement an agile, flexible communication strategy to slash the time required to get your ecommerce site back up and operating. - Best ways to quickly detect, investigate, and fix issues on your website or mobile app. This session is presented by Everbridge.

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Prashant Darisi

Vice President, CEM Business Solutions, Everbridge

TRANSCRIPT

00:00:12

Welcome to this presentation. We'll use shopping card, stay upright in the upcoming holidays. We have our esteemed speaker with us, Mr. , VP of business solutions at every bridge. And now I'll hand it over to Shan so that he can take it for

00:00:30

Thank you very much on a PREA. Well, good morning. Good afternoon. Good evening from wherever you are. Thank you very much for spending some time with us. Yes. Uh, I'm part of the center of excellence here at ever bridge responsible for our critical event management global solutions. And, uh, today I'm, I'm very interested in and passionate about the topic that I'm covering, why we call it the concept of keeping your shopping cart up during the upcoming holidays. It's just topical. The reality is all businesses. Today are digital. If you speak to any analysts, they will say that CIO is of today have started operating like chief operating officers. And the reason for that is almost everything is digital. And if anything, the entire concept of cloud transformation, cloud adoption, digital transformation, no matter what lexicon we use that has been accelerated as a result of this pandemic, more and more people working from home and people are figuring out that they can be equally or perhaps even more productive sitting at home.

00:01:37

And so this acceleration of, of adoption of new technology has led to innovation, disruptive technologies being introduced in the market park, coming with all of that is this tremendous side effects of the pain that end customers are feeling as they receive new services. And that's the topic I want to cover today. And I think, I think in the most simplified sense, uh, we don't need to think too much about what this all means. I think it's the dose statement, but the reality is for any organization to succeed, we have to deliver services. We have to build products that delight our customers, right? Uh, customer loyalty, net promoter score, customer satisfaction, whatever it may be is, especially in today's world of social media, where bad news spreads faster than the wildfire. It's extremely important for all of us to ensure that when we deliver services to our customers, this is something that they want.

00:02:43

And this is something that they love. Now we did look at some of the data of the past. As some of you may be aware, I'm bringing some of these data points from a little while back in history. Obviously I don't want to go and put out brand names here that have recently failed, but the reality is you are aware of all of them, but part of manic downtime, service outage, uptime, reliability, no matter which way we look at the digital services that are being built today. And today I'm only talking about one aspect of it, retailers or e-commerce websites. We can know that every minute of disruption costs companies tons of money, but more important than money is the longterm effects of the reputation costs. When the words preps that this is not a reliable platform with which you can do business with or interact with, right?

00:03:42

It does have ramifications beyond just the time during which the service was disrupted. Here are some examples here. Now I'll go back in history and tell you what that per minute dollar impact is. Believe it or not. I'm talking about historical numbers, right? Online transactions were running at an average of just under $9 million a minute. And with every year, the amount of business that gets done online compared to the brick and mortar stores keeps going up. So if we're talking about the upcoming holiday season in 2021, especially as we start recovering from this car, the entire pandemic, this number is going to go up. And so this is just not about uptime folks. This is about how do we delight our customers as well. So we did do a study as part of our incident management in the age of customer centricity. We wanted to ask, right, how important is customer experience until now it groups development groups, application development teams have generally been talking about the concepts of uptime.

00:04:52

And I think that word is a word of the past. There is a significant cultural shift. When you go and talk to a group of developers, they are all worried about not only the digital operations in the platform that they leverage, or the experience that they're delivering, you know, delivering to their end customers. So this is not very surprising, but it does signify a clear and seismic shift in how people are looking at digital services when they build them, when they deploy them. And when customers experience them, overwhelming, majority of people feel that customer experience is key to delivering value to your customers as it pertains to all the products and services that you build. So the concept of uptime is money. The concept of uptime is important, you know, reliability, and you know, what is the heartbeat of your application saying these are age or concepts.

00:05:50

We need to shift and focus on that end customer, as it pertains to our digital operations. Now it's not that, you know, look, if he had made no changes to our infrastructure, we can always drive continuous improvement and help with the availability of the system. The reliability we can focus on concepts offered redundancy and say, look, I can continue to deliver a great value to our customers, but the problem is in today's world of innovation and emergence of disruptive technologies like change is the only constant. And if you look at this survey here, you can actually see right, 35% of the folks, uh, introducing a new release change every week. How many times have you gone to a mobile app and say, this app got upgraded. That app got upgraded. This service has changed. These domes have changed, right? Change is the only constant. So we are facing this cultural shift where we say customer experience is key.

00:06:52

However change is ever present here. And so how do you balance those two out, right? You're continuously making changes. And historically they've talked about, take your own time, design it properly, tested properly, then take it to a pilot, then do a beta test and then deliver it into production. That's not true anymore. This is change is being constant value is being delivered almost instantly to our end customer. So we have to be cognizant of the fact that it is changing. Now, if you're changing that fast, we must be doing something right or wrong, right? So if you go and ask these customers, right, Hey, you're experiencing a lot of change. Here are all the organizations and corporations out there that promise you greater value, better user experience, faster products, easier to use, you know, use user experience. What is the end impact? It's very scary folks.

00:07:55

Almost 20%, 21% of our customers are experiencing service degradation daily. Now, if you combine the concept of daily and monthly, we're talking an overwhelming majority of the changes that are being done in the system negatively impacting that concept of customer experience, right? Our job is to deliver value to our customers, gain customer loyalty, delight them. But if 40% of our customers are feeling that every month they're experiencing service degradation and some of them every day, I think we're in a bad shape right here, but we can continue to pull what port means. A lot of people have a lot of money. They probably have big teams that are on call tons of developers that can actually fix what they have buried and probably broken. But if you really look at it, we started by saying, we have to deliver greater value to our customers. We are facing competing pressures.

00:08:56

Therefore we have to deliver new product services and make it easier for our customers to use. But if you're spending majority of your time, fixing what you have paid, if you have spending majority of your time fixing what your bed, how can you innovate? How can you move this forward right now? The typical answer, right? Whether it's the mythical man month or people with large budgets, if you talk to CEOs, they will say all our budgets for digital transformation are going to accelerate post pandemic. Whether you speak to one analysts or radically speak to all the executives throughout the globe, they are all putting more and more money into the concept of digital transformation. So much so that if you look at IDC, they say that $2 trillion will be spent globally on visitor transformation. But here is the more scary fact they project that 70% of the projects are under this umbrella of digital transformation will actually fail, right?

00:10:04

That Skiddy 70% failure rate, right? But if you talk to CEOs or any of you, I bet all of us want to innovate faster, right? And we do want to introduce concepts of machine learning, AI technology, better user experience, better mobile experience, right? Ease of use. The idea is that we want to make so many changes, get rid of the legacy system tools, consolidation, move to the cloud. These are significant projects, right? But the problem is the faster we go, more issues are cropping up, right? That is why a lot of people believe that 70 or 60 or 50, whatever number you take, right? Even if you want to make this conservative, tons of money will result in failure. And the all-pervasive threat of cybersecurity is not going to go away. The faster we develop code, right? The propensity or the, or the accidental mistake of leaving privacy and security on the sidelines.

00:11:10

Right? So as we talk about this cultural shift of delighting the customers, there has to be a cultural shift to ensure privacy and security with innovation as well. I to should not be an afterthought. It should be part of the process, but this is the challenge we are facing folks. This is the reason why shopping guards don't stay up. Right? And this is despite the fact that globally $2 trillion will be spent on digital transformation. So what are these common challenges? Right? So let's summarize, you know, we talked about in a bunch of slides, but if we summarize it right, we can see that when we speak to the audiences, we take any certain way. We pick up any Forrester Gartner IDC report, right? 84% of the teams believe that the issues that the customers report, right? The phone calls that come into the help desk are effecting the ability towards either the initiatives of digital transformation, innovation, or simply building new products.

00:12:18

And then, you know, like I talked about cyber threats always remain pervasive. I don't need to talk about any of that. All of you know about it right now. And none of the overwhelming majority of folks have said that they're spending half their time, half their time resolving issues. So we're talking about an effective capacity of people, which is that 50%, right? So if we are talking about any operational researcher using Microsoft project or any other tool, we are always taught to say, Hey, plan for 80% capacity in that 80% capacity, they're saying half the time you're spending fixing issues. That means you have a minuscule amount of time left to build new services and keep your shopping cart up and delight your customers. And then the problem is with the concept of, and the plethora of tools that are in the ecosystem already, that are mainframe systems that are still alive, that are COBOL and Fortran systems still alive.

00:13:20

And then there are these modern technologies. So every time a new problem comes, we look at the promissory note from another vendor and say, let's buy this new tool. It promises utopia to us. And now we have hundreds of tools with overlapping and competing priorities and responsibilities. And now, because of all the millions of dollars you've spent on those tools, you're locked in, that is now also preventing you from moving away. So is there a way to overcome this challenge? Right? Let's look at some of those concepts there. And then like we talked about, this is again, the obvious part of it as we move forward, especially post pandemic, especially as we get comfortable with the concept of remote workforce, more and more operations will become digital. Like I talked about, CIO will start acting as right. We are going to talk about digital operations as the means to drive revenue, not just reduce costs, not just to tools, consolidation, but bruh drive revenue and revenue will be driven by customer experience.

00:14:33

Revenue will be driven by selling more and therefore customer experience use it. Experience concepts cannot be an afterthought as we moved through the post pandemic era. So if these are the challenges, right, what are the key ingredients for success? Now, we'll go straight down and talk about the concept of digital operations itself. Like when something breaks is where we need to start focusing our energy. If everything works fine, obviously nothing for us to do. But one of the things that our customers or organizations that deliver digital services are experiencing is how many tubes they have that tell you that something is wrong. There are application monitoring tools that do our network monitoring this end point security there's web traffic tools, right? So whether you want to look at it from the perspective of ABM item, item, ID, DSM, there are hundreds of tools out there that are monitoring your ecosystem to tell you something is wrong.

00:15:36

Now at the simplest way, shouldn't it be possible for a solution that you leverage to delight your customers? Not only to take the trigger from the system, that's telling you something wrong, but become proactive and check all the systems in a single step. So rather than talking about simple or event correlation or noise reduction, can you actually enrich the signal that's coming into the system that says, you know, application monitoring system is saying, this web traffic is saying this your network monitoring system is saying something else let's combine those signals. So by the time you make actionable, you have all the data right in front of you. So I believe signal enrichment, right? Even before we do noise reduction signal enrichment is key. As, as we try to keep our shopping cart. Number two, very often, the minute we detect something is wrong. We have set rules in our systems, policies, and systems to open a ticket.

00:16:39

We teach everybody, if you have a problem, send a mail to help desk or open a ticket. That's the best process for you to go and get help in resolving the issue. I want to challenge the recession, right? Shortening the system, try to fix the problem. Even before a ticket is created. Can there be some level of machine learning, right? Some way for use to detect the nature of the issue that's coming and proactively try to fix it and only create the ticket should all proactive, automated remediation, steps fail. I believe approaching this problem in this fashion is another key ingredient for digital operations and to ensure customer success. Then, you know, every time a ticket gets open, you know, this, every ticket is opened as a priority, one, every ticket deems to bring them, you know, sky falling. So everything is a sad one.

00:17:43

So as we try to fix these issues and overcome these challenges, right, how can differentiate between a cell and ticket that I hold on my left hand and a seven ticket on my right hand, categorization prioritization, understanding what the service dependency mappings up, understanding the cost of impact. It's extremely important. So categorization and prioritization on where to focus our energies to keep the shopping cart upright is the third key ingredient to making sure that we succeed. And then obviously this is well understood technology out there. I won't belabor the point, but there is an issue here, right? Why do we are very successful in deploying runbook automation tools? Typically when change gets done, right? When we execute changes, leveraging these runbook automation tools, there is a business process, a series of approvals. When we quarantine a network or roll up the patch, roll back, the batch reboot, an agent, right?

00:18:50

What are the changes you are making typically requires a business process where approvals might be needed, notifications might be issued or for compliance and audit reasons you have to prepare to fail. So it's just not the concept of runbook automation, but it's also respecting and automating the business processes that go along with the concept of runbook automation is another key. And then finally, this is again, well understood, but perhaps most misused, we are randomly going out there and throwing the concepts of AI because it is a jazzy down. We will use machine learning all over the place, but it has to answer some fundamental questions. Can the system tell you, how am I doing now? How did I do? And, oh, by the way, based on the past incidents of how, not just the events that propagated through the system, but how the teams have responded.

00:19:49

Can I combine the concepts of event correlation and response, correlation and team performance to say, how do you think we will do in the future? So when we talk about the concept of operational analytics, we have to be able to answer all those questions, to make sure that we don't repeat the mistakes of the past. So I believe that in, in, in a nutshell, these are the five things that are absolutely needed when we want to make sure that our customers are happy when we deliver digital services. Now let's look at some of these concepts, one at a time, right? Uh, plus default, we talked about this concept of knowing the difference between one cell one and another seven. And I think the most important thing in this aspect is to try and understand what services, what businesses, what end customers, what groups are getting.

00:20:47

Once you have a good idea, then you are in a great position to figure out whether the priority and the severity should be adjusted or not, which is that one issue that our developer there to help this person should get out of bed, right? Is it worth it or not? What is the financial impact? What is the customer impact? Right? And then we need to figure out who's available. Whether you call it on call scheduling as collision policies that you've put in place, right? Those are some of the key concepts that we need to cover with the platform. And then we do need to engage the right people. It's not just important to simply say, I have an issue and I need somebody from the database team, somebody from the application monitoring team, somebody from the server team, but there are problems that now cross the chasm, digital operations into business continuity as well.

00:21:41

We are increasingly seeing this concept of digital events, impacting physical infrastructure. You know, the examples of ransomware that happened, right? Ransomware hits a network effects the supply chain, and then people not able to fill gas and patrol in their vehicles. What is this? This is a confluence of business continuity and digital operations all coming together. So at all points of time, we need to stay proactive, not only in engaging the right people, but also communicating to the end customers, communicating to the key stakeholders and senior management, right? So we need to become very smart in orchestrating these business processes. And then, you know, obviously we cannot solve the problem unless we can bring people together to solve the issue in a collaborative way and collaborative way. Simply doesn't mean trying to put everybody on a conference bridge as fast as you can. Anybody can do that.

00:22:41

However, when you see multiple issues coming out of different triggering systems, this is what I was talking about. Enriching the signal. Are you able to put those together? Not only from the perspective of the events that are occurring on your ecosystem, but the people that need to come together, we have not beans. We have SOC teams, we have BIM teams, we have IPS and teams. We have the dev ops teams. Can we actually build a collaboration hub to bring all these people together, right? Ensuring that we leverage the same tools and technologies that we're used to. Some people love MST. And some people like WebEx. Some people like zoom, some people want slack, but no matter what is the favorite choice of the tool, is it possible for us to bring all these folks into that collaboration hub, right? Not locking you into any particular single vendor, but making all the systems hump together, leverage the investments that you've made in the tools that you already have, but still accomplish the goals of ensuring that the teams collaborate quickly and rapidly to bring resolution to any outage that you're experiencing.

00:23:53

So we'll close this out on the concept of operational analytics here, right? So we have now figured out, you know, how go back to the question that we talked about, how am I doing, right? How will I do, how did I do right? So whether you want to give it the lens of security, operations, service, operations, network, operations, dev operations, it doesn't matter. The idea is that can you get and become a little more proactive? Can you become more automated in your remediation? Can you drive analytics to amp, answer simple questions, not simply doing regression analysis and trending charts, but answer the question on how the teams are likely to perform in the future or become proactive in fixing those issues. So how do all these concepts come together? How do all these concepts come together for us, for ever bridge with our CEM, for digital critical event management for digital platform, we talk about the concepts of digital operations with superior customer experience.

00:24:59

Now, if I draw it as a picture, right? The idea is to ensure that we are taking triggers from the multiple systems that you're using in your ecosystem to drive the value. But the first step of that is not just react to the first trigger that you get. But when you detect something has gone wrong through your monitoring systems, go back into the ecosystem proactively to enrich the signal, right, go and check the other systems and other products that are in your ecosystem and reach that one trigger by getting signals from multiple systems and then execute automated remediation. As you would see here, we have detected something has gone wrong. We have enriched the signal we have already executed remediation steps. We haven't created a ticket yet only when all proactive measures of correcting bail is when we get into the world of creation of an incident.

00:26:02

Right? And this is again, a big shift on how we view people should look at their shopping carts, right? Fix the problem proactively even before you wake somebody up, even before you create a ticket. And once of course you have created a ticket, right? Based on the nature of the incident that you have received, there are different audiences. Clearly there is a team of, of people that are going to actually fix the issue and bring the resolution to bear. However, we have equal obligations to reach out to the stakeholders as well, beat our end customers, be partners, be it a different business unit, and then affect the resolution process and go back to the ecosystem, learn from it and make sure that we are able to seamlessly deliver that customer experience that we are talking about. Right. But one of the key things here that we do need to understand from the other aspect of it is look at this entire concept as an adaptive incident management system.

00:27:02

This is no longer a linear process of reacting to events, but it is a cyclical process where we understand the context and the severity of what went wrong, relocate the right people, the stakeholders, the business units, and the customers that we need to communicate with. We create that collaboration hub, where people can come together very elaborately and affect the solution process. And through all these steps, we have the right elementary and the analytics to drive continuous improvement. So when we talk about adaptive incident management, we're talking about a cyclical process. And in all of this, while we are looking at this as a concept of simple digital operations, we also need to make sure that we balance both technical and human needs. So if you really look at it from the perspective of the flow of customer value, most of the incident management protocols systems ecosystems sit here, right?

00:28:03

Whether it is IDSS cybersecurity, dev ops, dev sec ops or cross-functional teams for major incidents that you have to put together, we need to make sure that we are balancing those needs as well. But as an organization, we need to have a 360 degree view of the risk. Like I talked about, whether you take the examples of the recent ransomware or the digital operations, you know, in the olden days, a hurricane would take a data center out. So a physical event would impact digital services negatively in today's world with the pervasive nature of digital operations. We are beginning to see that if we are digital operations that affected the impact of that, isn't on your business, continuity, your supply chain, your facilities, or your physical aspects of your business. So it's very important to balance that view of the risk to the organization, not just from the perspective of that one outage that you experienced, but the ramifications of it across the organizations.

00:29:04

And then finally it leads to the concept of enterprise resilience, operational resilience, systemic resilience, no matter which terminology you use, we need to bring all these silos together to make sure that we understand react, respond and remediate based on the risk profiles and the impact to our business cross-functionally and across various domains and silos that exist in our system. So when we talk about critical event management for digital operations, it's just not limited to the concept of digital operations, but the, and responsibilities of the organization do span across into the physical domain of the world, the business continuity of the word, the risk frameworks of the world as well. Right? Right. So how do we keep our shopping cart up, right. And how do we deliver superior customer experience? We can do that if we balance both the technical and the human aspect of experience, right?

00:30:07

Obviously it starts with the basics. We have to protect ourselves against service issues. No question about it. But as we do that, there are operational aspects that lead to a lot of friction, right? Whether it is bringing people together rapidly, whether it is leveraging the tools that you have in your ecosystem, whether you want to exchange data from one system to the other execute automated scripts to do that is our other friction through the leverage, the current tools that get you have deliver the ROI and then drive continuous improvement, and then combine those best of breed tool chains. You don't have to leave any of your legacy system systems behind. You can still make them hum with your new age tools, but over a period of time, try to converge on the best of breed tool chains to make sure that you're meeting all the objectives that you've set, not only for digital transformation, but for delighting the customers as well.

00:31:10

And then eventually, yes, right? This is all about delivering remarkable customer experiences. Like we talked about CIO is, are increasingly becoming the CQL halls of the world. And so we have to keep and be cognizant of customer experience as we build these new digital services and deliver these operations to us. So this is what we believe is necessary to keep your shopping cart up. Clearly, this being topical, we are focusing on retail, but we can go to manufacturing. We can go to high-tech. We can go to the oil and natural gas. We can go to state and local government, no matter what lens we put these aspects of what is required to succeed are applicable everywhere with that. I want to thank all of you for giving me the time and listening in very happy to engage with you. Please do reach out to us if we can help you in any way in not only keeping your shopping cart up, but helping you deliver better digital operations with superior customer experience. Thank you very much folks.