Vertical User Experience Platform


Whilst discussing what a UXP is and who the key players are with a customer I was asked an interesting question, “is there a need for industry (banking, retail, government …) specific UXP ?”.

My immediate reaction was that the technologies in a UXP were generic horizontal solutions that should be agnostic to the industry they were implemented in. The fact that they were specialised solutions and are not industry specific to me was a key advantage. So why would you want a content management solution or collaboration tool that was specific to banking or retail?

The response was interesting: For many smaller companies the complexity of managing their web presence is huge, even if they buy into a single vendor approach for example using Microsoft Sharepoint they still have a huge task to set up the individual components (content management, collaboration, social tools and apps) and this is only made harder with the need to support an increasing array of devices (phone, tablet, TV etc…).

It seems there is a need for an offering that provides an integrated full UXP that can be set-up easily and quickly without the need for an army of developers. Compromises on absolute flexibility are acceptable provided a rich set of templates (or the ability to create custom templates) were provided, such that the templates handled device support automatically. Further the UXP might offer vertical specific content feeds out of the box.

As in my previous blog “The End of Silo Architectures” using a UXP front end technology to create industry specific apps is a great idea. Such a solution could not only provide the business functionality (e.g. Internet banking, insurance quotes/claims, stock trading) but the technical issues of cross device and browser support, security and performance.

So whilst I can understand the requirement and the obvious benefit, the idea of a vertical UXP to me seems like providing a vertical specific CRM or Accounting package. The real answer is that it makes sense to provide vertical apps and use generic Content, Collaboration and social tools from a UXP. Ideally the generic components are integrated and have easy to configure templates.

As I have highlighted before though the UXP is complex not just from a technology perspective but also from the perspective of skills, processes and standards. The first step for any organisation must be to create a strategy for UXP: audit what you currently have, document what you need (take into consideration current trends like social, gamification and mobile) and then decide how you move forward.

Unfortunately this area currently seems ill serviced by the consultancy companies so it may just be up to you to roll your own strategy.

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One Response to “Vertical User Experience Platform”

  1. Dave Molnar Says:

    While I agree with many points you have made our healthcare organization and a few partnering ones we work with know have been using what is I guess is now called a UXP solution. Although the name UXP is new to the market this concept it’s new to our vendor Oxcyon, Centralpoint is the platform we have adopted by them to serve a couple large scale portals and this one massive toolset has allowed us to rid the organization of these silos of applications you mentioned by using one single platform that does it all. They have been around for over 10 years possibly longer, they also serve many verticals so it is possible that one technology could serve the entire UXP market and any client within it using the platform. When we first saw it it was a hard concept to grasp, but when the light bulb went off we were convinced it was the only way to go. If you have a minute take a look it could change the way you look at any project you are faced with we almost purchased Sharepoint and a CMS but glad we didn’t. I guess you can say the end of silo-ed architecture is here, take a look. http://www.oxcyon.com/main/whatiscentralpoint.aspx

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