"It's not surprising many companies face a very real risk of losing their customers. Building new apps and introducing new channels to reach customers is not enough. It's vital to assure them of information security while delivering a seamless customer experience," he remarked.
Kuhn suggested a CIAM solution could bridge these customer wants with the company's business goals to drive revenue and increase business at their websites. CIAM offers a holistic view of the customer relationship, allowing companies to balance security needs with high usability.
Compliance and Privacy
Increasing regulation and compliance requirements is a serious concern among many IT leaders. For example, the impending Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May 2018 would require the use of qualifiers to sort customers based on their privacy settings. The GDPR's "forget me" stipulation allows customers to demand their personal data be expunged from business records if they so desire. But with numerous sub-systems storing personal data at different sites, such a qualifier would be difficult to implement.
National Digital Identity
A common theme during the discussion was the forthcoming National Digital Identity framework proposed by the Singapore government. A key pillar of the country's Smart Nation initiative, the NDI would offer businesses a convenient and secure platform to engage customers. When available, businesses could take advantage of a variety of value-added services including the signing of digital agreements and secure storage of digital documents with the NDI.
But some CIOs voiced caution over rushing into adopting the proposed standard. There were segments of the population such as the elderly that would struggle to adopt a digital identity. Businesses looking to adopt the NDI would need to augment their existing CIAM solutions to cater to specific demographic segments.
Building seamless web experiences
Linking the offline shopping experience with their online activities was also a challenging proposition for many companies. For example, many brands were looking at loyalty programmes to enhance the consumer journey but could not integrate the offline and online activities. This was for some the missing piece in customer identity access.
Kuhn noted that from a technology perspective, the tools were available to to integrate all customer touch-points and channels for an integrated customer experience using the same customer identity. A modern CIAM platform offered a unified experience regardless of which channels customers accessed.
There was general consensus that Artificial Intelligence and customer analytics would play a significant role in the customer experience. Most agreed this kind of intelligence was necessary to maintain engagement and increase customer retention. For example, tracking customers from the point they logged in to when they left the website offered a deeper understanding on buying patterns and insights as to why some abandon purchases. The challenge was to tailor the analysis to identify the possible remediation such as redirecting more price-sensitive customers to different segments of the website that matched their spending preferences.
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.