Customer and partner portals for integrating processes, people and information
People are increasingly taking on more diverse responsibilities in their work roles yet have less time and opportunities for training. They need easy access to a wide range of high-quality information to do their jobs successfully. Customer and Partner portals are a great way to provide this to customers, partners and employees.
Information portals support and integrate processes, people and information. They blend content from diverse sources into a single resource with a unified look and feel, providing a trusted source of information for their target audiences.
Different types of portal support different audiences:
- Customer support portal
Provides customers with a self-service resource, enabling them to use your products and services while reducing the demands on your support team
- Developer portal
Provides API customers with a self-contained hub with all the information they need to understand and use the capabilities of your service
- Partner portal
Gives your partners access to the resources they need to market, sell and support your products and services.
Success factors for information portals
Customer and partner portals often require diverse inputs from several teams within an organisation. These inputs must be pulled together and presented in a unified, easy-to-use resource: a successful user experience comes from simplicity, speed and trust.
- Provide a clear structure with easy navigation
If you have great content, it’s a waste if readers can’t find it. A well-designed information structure is the foundation of a portal. Structured content provides clear categories of information that simplify navigation and make it easy to find information.
- Integrate content from various sources
Content should appear seamless to readers and to those that produce the content. A well-designed structure enables content to be seamlessly created and integrated. For example: a developer portal should contain API reference information from the development team, as well as server status information from the DevOps team; a partner portal requires sales collateral from marketing, as well as technical manuals from the documentation team.
- Provide a unified look and feel
Content may be created by different teams using different tools, but the portal should provide a consistent look and feel to the reader.
- The portal should support a range for formats
Different information is best communicated in an appropriate format; this could be text, images, videos, or e-learning. The portal should support all the formats required to ensure that it is a one-stop-shop for the reader.
- Ensure that the processes and tools that support the content creation also support your business strategy
If your application is updated weekly, the content on the portal also needs to be updated weekly. This can put a significant burden on traditional publication processes. Streamlining how content is created and introducing automation can cut the cycle time required.
- Provided in language of the market
Providing content in the language of the local market simplifies interactions for partners and customers.
How 3di can help
Information portals provide an effective way to share information and resources about systems and processes that reach beyond organisational boundaries. However, if the process to create and update the portal is complex and difficult to manage, the benefits of the portal will be lost.
3di works with organisations to design, implement and manage efficient content-creation and localisation processes to ensure that the technical and business information is captured and published efficiently.
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