Customer experience has become the defining battleground for leading consumer businesses. Customers 2020: A Progress Report by Walker states that 86 percent of consumers are willing to pay more for great customer experience and, by 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. Consumers now look for seamless ‘digital first’ experiences and want to interact with brands over messaging channels like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Apple Business Chat and SMS.
However, many established businesses are struggling to keep pace with these changing customer expectations due to legacy technology infrastructure and fragmented systems. Solving this problem is where IMImobile has carved a niche for itself.
Delivering an unmatched customer experience
Founded in 2000, IMImobile is a global cloud communications software and solutions provider headquartered in London, with offices across the globe. The company offers an integrated suite of platform and applications to help businesses improve customer experience and reduce operational costs. IMImobile’s clients include organisations such as Hermes, Centrica, AA, O2, EE, BT, Walgreens, Pizza Hut, Vodafone, MTN, Best Buy, Express, three major retail banks in the UK and public-sector organisations, globally.
IMImobile’s enterprise cloud communications platform, IMIconnect, enables businesses to deliver frictionless customer experiences across 10+ channels including SMS, Email, Push and In-app Messaging, WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat and RCS, through AI-augmented inbound and outbound communications. This includes customer interactions such as appointment management, complaint handling, consent management, fraud alerts and payment notifications, omnichannel live chat, order tracking and management, and so on.
Getting on board the AWS engine
IMImobile powers mission-critical customer communications and supports billions of business-customer interactions annually. Having high availability was critical for them to ensure that businesses and customers can communicate with each other at all times using IMImobile’s products.
Another requirement was to expand product availability across different geographies through a single architecture. IMImobile’s multi-tenant cloud platform, IMIconnect, is deployed across multiple regions, enabling them to rapidly on-board customers across Americas, Europe, MEA and APAC.
AWS also met IMImobile’s availability, geo-redundancy and disaster recovery requirements. IMImobile deployed a multi-availability zone architecture on AWS that ensures high availability without having to deploy a separate disaster recovery (DR) set-up.
“Our choice of cloud services provider was based on the scalability, performance, security and availability requirements of our clients for high volume, mission-critical customer interactions. AWS met our criteria in all these dimensions and their consulting oriented and collaborative approach has reduced the time to market for launching innovative capabilities.”, says Sudarshan Dharmapuri, EVP Products at IMImobile.
Auto-scaling and data migration with AWS
Having a flexible and easily-scalable platform is essential to accommodating seasonal peaks in customer interaction volumes managed by IMImobile. Using AWS Auto Scaling and Elastic Load Balancing, IMImobile handles billions of customer interactions annually with transaction volumes peaking during major festivals or shopping events such as Black Friday.
IMIconnect uses Amazon ECS (Elastic Container Service) for elastic scaling, and Amazon S3, Amazon Athena and Amazon DynamoDB for storing and querying large volumes of data.
IMImobile has observed benefits in terms of cost, efficiency, functioning and maintenance after using AWS services. Citing an example, Sudarshan commented that IMImobile had a telecommunications customer that required assistance in managing customer consent and communication preferences after the EU General Data Protection Regulation came into effect. With IMIconnect hosted on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), they could easily complete data migration within minutes.
“The wide range of services provided by AWS makes it easy to provision new instances on-demand and handle spikes in transaction volumes through elastic scaling. It’s also easy to experiment and iterate within a cloud environment,” he added.
Next steps for IMImobile and AWS
With the modes of communication constantly evolving, services like Amazon SageMaker and Amazon Polly are positioned to extend and enhance IMImobile’s conversational AI capabilities.
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