6 minute read

Dialing Up Consumer Convenience in a Mobile World

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

6 Minute Read

Use microservices for speed, agility and consistency

Payment providers face a real challenge in today’s market: meeting consumers anywhere, at any time. It sounds simple enough, but to do that, providers need to deliver new functionality across all channels with speed and agility, and that requires a cloud-native architecture.

For issuers working with legacy systems, adding new capabilities and conveniences to a card’s mobile app is a relatively slow process, and change is occurring so fast that these issuers risk being left behind in an increasingly mobile-first world. They’re weighed down by mainframes with layers of incompatible and inefficient interfaces and batch processing that generate, at best, dozens of releases per quarter to their mobile applications.

Given the expected speed of delivery in today's marketplace and nimble new entrants, it is incumbent upon issuers to adopt a cloud-native payment stack, with flexible technology, scale, and efficiency. The technology stack includes application programming interfaces (APIs) and microservices that are capable of hundreds of releases per quarter, ensuring continuous innovation and enhanced consumer journeys.

A macro look at the benefits of microservices

Microservices are just what they sound like: services broken down into modular components, working together to create functionality across an application.

For example, microservices enable issuers to provide embedded payments or create new experiences into digital mobile wallets with speed and agility. That’s now a basic expectation for any connected commerce activity where people can order groceries online, stream a movie, or chat with customer service—all from their mobile devices. In a mobile-first world, expectations have changed, and consumers demand convenience with their digital wallets: the ability to view balances in real time, and quickly access features such as digital offers, buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) plans, card controls, tokenization, and loyalty programs.

To sum it up, consumers demand immediacy and expect continuous enhancements through their mobile applications. They’ve come to expect quicker, more fluid and seamless interactions and services.

This requires providers to be extremely agile in the approach to development, testing, and releasing new user experiences. Issuers need to be able to provide releases—rapidly—and they can only do that with open banking enabled by cloud-based technology and APIs. These evolving technologies have been around for more than a decade, but they are taking on increasing importance, and they are giving an edge to businesses that adopt them.

This is in stark contrast to the legacy systems many issuers continue to rely upon today. Older, mainframe-based applications that are updated in batches limits the payment provider’s ability to manage new releases to mobile apps with the speed and agility required for today's feature-rich digital experiences.

Self-evaluation of the customer experience

In today’s mobile-first environment, a single negative interaction can cause customers to leave for a competitor. When it comes to implementing new digital customer experiences, the bar has been raised. For providers, it's a double-edged sword: on the one hand, they need to ramp up their release speed to market, while on the other hand, ensure they do not add friction to the user experience. To maintain pace in a mobile-first world, issuers should start by reevaluating their end-user experience with the following questions:

  • What is new customer onboarding like? Are activation rates above 90%?
  • Do customers experience added friction during authentication?
  • Are customers gaining greater self-service control, such as requesting replacement cards without contacting a call center?
  • Do customers experience a seamless journey across channels?
  • What do customers want from their payment providers?

Transforming the customer experience with real-time applications

The customer experience is constantly evolving. Watch as TSYS product owner, Jake Sumner, discusses the demand facing issuers as real-time applications change the way account holders interact with their provider.
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Providers need to build around the cloud and digital microservices, where features can be added to a mobile app in a matter of days, rather than months, which is typical for older, mainframe-based systems. Now, it’s all about the ability to use APIs, microservices and payments-as-a-service models to remain competitive.

Partner with your payments processor for speed and agility

TSYS uses its decades of experience in processing services with its built-in workflow capabilities, integrations, business rules, policy controls, consultative input, compliance and regulatory expertise and technology stack, to direct issuers through the adoption of microservices and APIs to deliver complex customer digital experiences. And we’re not standing still, continuing to invest heavily in the build out of new microservices with more than 750 available today—and counting.

Partnering with TSYS allows issuers to take greater control of their own customer journeys, with the ability to configure new experiences and channels that are ready to consume right off the shelf or with assistance through the TSYS Developers portal, sandbox and other tools. Workflow and policy controls are built into TSYS’ Digital Engagement microservices, so there’s less of a need to manage them across all channels. Our digital microservices deliver the following benefits:

  • Simpler to code. The TSYS Developers portal provides open specifications in terminology that developers can understand and deploy. This requires no knowledge of the processor's internal structures and design.
  • Speed to development. TSYS issuers typically experience more than a four-fold increase in the speed of developing a new mobile application, as compared with working on mainframe systems.
  • Highly scalable. Our microservices and APIs scale to accommodate rapid load changes, which are required for web and mobile use.
  • Lightweight data exchange. Cutting down on data transmission size helps improve the mobile performance and responsiveness. Cloud-native applications are designed to only use the data needed—not a predefined packet of data.
  • Shared policy controls. You have the ability to define policy checks within the service, allowing much more complex exchanges of data to be made with greater efficiency across channels.
  • Fully supported workflows. Customers can move seamlessly across channels to complete requests without missing a beat, as front-line teams are empowered with all the right information to complete any voice queries.

The only way to delight consumers in an abruptly changing mobile-first environment is to transition to a cloud-native architecture that enables speed, agility, and consistency. This, coupled with TSYS’ unmatched payment expertise, provides the necessary tools that providers need to release new mobile experiences at today’s pace. We’re here to help make that journey easier and more cost effective. With microservices, you can meet your customers where they are, providing them with the services they want, from whatever channel they choose.

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