Convenience or else: moving the B2B market towards simplicity

With the average customer in Southeast Asia spoilt for choice, striving for end-user convenience holds the key to business differentiation. According to a joint report from Google, Temasek Holdings, and Bain & Company, nearly half of digital customers cite ease of use, simplicity, and trust as key factors in their continued use of a digital platform.

Simplicity is, of course, much easier said than done, with onerous work in the background providing conditions to delight end users. Take for instance the public cloud—from AWS to Google to Azure, the work of configuring servers and storage is done behind the scenes, enabling end users to access the services they need, when they need it, with minimal effort.

However, it is imperative that convenience is not at the expense of governance and privacy. Unplugged gaps that disrupt business continuity grate not simply because they are costly, but because they are also completely unavoidable. For example, the two-day online banking services outage suffered by DBS earlier this year. The disruption, which was deemed the worst to hit the digital services of Southeast Asia’s largest bank in a decade, stemmed from self-inflicted deficiencies that did not just earn the ire of customers, but also regulators.

Simply put, when customers have convenience, governance, and security, business continuity and growth receive a shot in the arm. New technologies also become more accessible to a variety of end users, while fears over privacy and compliance are also allayed.

Rethinking solutions management and configuration

To embed governance and privacy into offerings that deliver simplicity, the B2B front needs to take a long, hard look at how solutions are managed and configured. Access to managing and configuring solutions should be put under the microscope, so that organisations can fully gauge the usability of their offerings. If they cannot be used by the least tech savvy team member, then it is not maximising your business value, and thus in need of a rethinking. This is especially critical due to the region’s diverse workforce, meaning that organisations must ensure usability is future-facing.

By moving away from a fixation on the end user of today, organisations can build evergreen B2B solutions that are perennial due to the ease of use they offer. This level of simplicity, when paired with governance and privacy, is a potent mix that will give impetus to lasting end-user efficiency.

Truly embracing digital hinges on choosing the right software to enhance user experiences. This empowers businesses to retain key stakeholders, as well as facilitating cross-selling and upselling strategies to reach new clients and expand the customer base.

While undoubtedly daunting, decision makers must consider the factors that enable them to implement user interfaces which meet present needs, and that also anticipate developments to come in the years ahead. Ultimately, simplification without governance and privacy is meaningless. While no silver bullet, driving impactful and meaningful digital transformation calls for players in the B2B space to deliver these three pillars in unison to improve flexibility and keep pace with end-user expectations.