Reinventing the enterprise portal: A glance at the future of enterprise software

Ask any IT person and they’ll tell you that one of their biggest challenges is figuring out how to integrate data and make it available to employees. With the average enterprise using almost 500 apps, data ends up scattered across multiple systems, making it difficult and time-consuming to access critical work information.In fact, 25% of an employee’s working hours are often wasted on information searches, and when it becomes too overwhelming to wade through the data, employees avoid using systems altogether. The same goes for completing tasks – the systems are too complicated (and there are too many of them) to enable employees to get their work done quickly.

Something needs to be done.

Between Forrester Research and Gartner, industry leaders agree enterprise software is heading in the same direction: a single platform that consolidates the data and workflows from the various systems of record that employees use into one place. While the name is still up for debate – Forrester calls them digital experience portals, Gartner calls them digital experience platforms, and others use terms like system of engagement – the reality is that these portal-like technologies that many think of as old and archaic, are resurfacing as a solution to change how people work.

Digital experience portals and platforms

Forrester believes that portal technologies “are critical to delivering secure web and mobile experiences on top of back-end and transaction systems of record”. According to the research firm, large organizations struggle to provide digital experiences for complex systems, such as CRMs and ERPs. Digital experience portals allow IT to integrate existing enterprise systems – whether legacy, on-premises, or SaaS – and provide customizable user interfaces, which enable enterprises to deliver important data, information, and tasks that require action to employees in an intuitive, personalized way.

Gartner takes a similar point of view to the portal. It states that enterprises must look beyond traditional portal frameworks to digital experience platforms (DXPs) as they start redefining their business strategies through digital transformation. According to Gartner, a DXP is a “rationalized, integrated set of components on which websites, portal sites, and mobile apps can be built, deployed, and continually improved”. DXPs, according to Gartner, provide a uniform platform that individuals can engage and interact with, regardless of system of record.

Systems of engagement

Organizations have becoming reliant on systems of record (tools like SAP, Oracle, and IBM) that store mission-critical data and run business-critical operations. However, systems of record don’t live up to end users’ expectations of software today because they’re often slow, clunky, and difficult to navigate. In this digital age, the current workforce has come to expect the same convenience and easy-to-use experience they have with consumer apps in their personal lives, and it is driving a transition toward systems of engagement. Using technologies like digital experience portals/platforms,which include push notifications and machine learning, systems of record can be transformed into systems of engagement so that employees can interact and engage with useful information and workflows that were previously buried in those systems.

A new portal has emerged . . . A modern portal

Improving employee productivity is a top priority for most organizations. They know employees are struggling to access the data they need and complete the actions required to be successful in their jobs. This is why solutions such as digital experience portals and systems of engagement are becoming hot technology categories. And customers like CBS, Google, RPX Corporation, and Turner are turning to Sapho, a modern portal solution, to solve these challenges.

Sapho’s modern portal uses micro apps (instead of portlets) to proactively surface valuable business data, personalized insights, important system changes, and actionable tasks to employees. These micro apps – built by IT on top of existing systems of record and delivered to employees any device, intranet, or messenger – break down workflows into manageable pieces and simplify access to data. With Sapho, employees are able to complete work faster and make better decisions, improving their overall productivity and effectiveness.

While the category name may differ, enterprise software is entering a new era and business leaders are turning to reinvented portals to help modernize their existing systems, increase employee engagement, and transform the way people work.

Want to learn more about how Sapho empowers employees with a modern portal experience?

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Natalie Lambert

Natalie Lambert is the Vice President of Marketing at Sapho. She joins from Citrix where she held multiple product marketing leadership positions. Before that, Natalie was a principal analyst at Forrester Research where she was the leading expert on end user computing.

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