‘Digital Experience Platforms (DXP)’ is a relatively new term that encapsulates the technology required to facilitate digital transformations that have the primary goal of providing better customer experiences. DXPs can be a single product, but are often a suite of products that are integrated together.
Many of these platforms have evolved from the content management space which can be very constraining and produce convoluted solutions as the content management ‘model’ is stretched way beyond its original purpose. This common anti-pattern consists of many independently developed products, with many features that are typically not required, that have been acquired and then integrated together with the CMS in often very superficial ways. As a result we have often opted to build a bespoke DXP with a more decoupled service-oriented architecture to ensure we get the flexibility we need with a platform that is streamlined for the functionality required and leverages existing elements of our customers architecture. Examples include a new website and booking system for the National Theatre and a new customer experience platform for Scottish Power to enable customers to manage their accounts.
We do now however have a preferred 'out-of-the-box' choice for a DXP platform which is Liferay DXP. This 'developer-friendly' technology is built from the ground up as an integration platform. It was originally devised as a leaner open source alternative to the enterprise portal solutions that were predominant for surfacing enterprise data up until the end of the noughties. Based on open standards, and with many pre-existing integrations to popular products already available through the open source community, this platform can be set up as a DXP solution quicker, cheaper and much more closely aligned to customer requirements.
Whilst Liferay didn’t evolve out of a CMS it does provide a good standard of CMS functionality which is still often very important for many DXP projects. We’ve augmented this with a SKOS taxonomy manager and auto-tagging solution so that we can offer advanced content capabilities beyond that of any CMS. We have delivered some large scale and complex platforms using Liferay with both demanding integration and content requirements such as a new HR platform project for the whole of the NHS and a new digital platform for Bristol City council to manage transactional and information services - and it hasn’t let us down yet!