With the rise of mega sales events by online retailers, the final three months of the year has become an increasingly critical period for the Singapore e-commerce scene.
Alibaba’s “Singles Day” event in November 2018 eclipsed e-commerce records worldwide after registering USD 30.8 billion worth of spending within 24 hours. One survey indicated a 935% increase in sales for the event in Singapore alone. Meanwhile, Lazada and Shopee also reported record sales for their own shopping event in September 2017.
The immense potential of e-commerce has highlighted the crucial role played by software developers, who are responsible for a shopper’s entire digital experience – from the attractiveness of the online advertisement to the eventual checkout process. According to research, 65% of Singaporeans will leave a website if it takes too long to enter their payment information at checkout.
Chris Halim, co-founder and CEO of online clothing rental company Style Theory, said “every member of the tech team understands that having a stable infrastructure to serve customers, from browsing through to subscription and delivery is but a basic requirement”.
However, a report found that software developers in Singapore spend an average of sixteen hours a week rewriting bad code, which amounted to almost USD 1.6 billion in annual lost productivity for the Singapore economy. The need to rewrite bad code can arise for various reasons, including refactoring and maintaining legacy systems.
As such, retailers must review their development programs and redirect the efforts of their software engineers toward projects that add actual business value. This is especially vital, as Singapore will be short of one million skilled workers by 2030, with the technology sector bearing most of the brunt.
One of the ways to address this issue is to outsource the more basic functions wherever possible. This will enable the software developers to focus their energies on more value-added projects, such as exploring new ways to improve customer engagement.
In addition, retailers should not isolate their software engineers to only the technical aspects of the operation, but also involve them in the development of business strategies. This helps to align the developers’ work with revenue-driving initiatives, at the same offering them a more complete picture of the company’s vision.
Halim shared that “the real magic happens when we harness technology to enable a hyper personalized experience for our customers. Every day for our developers is an opportunity to create a truly pivotal platform for customers to discover fashion in a way that fits them best”.
Source: Singapore Business Review