Insights

Why Drupal is a Good Fit for E-Governance
Authors: Anoop John, Vimal Joseph, Thomas P. Thomas E-governance has grown and developed rapidly reflecting the social, economic and cultural changes happening. The increased usage of the web by the citizens, the ease of use, the ubiquity of digital connectivity, IoT have allowed for the emergence of a number of applications for Government to Citizen, Government to Government and Government to Business Services. Leveraging the web for citizen engagement, delivery of government services to citizens, businesses and inter-government departmental services is key to strengthening the e-governance capability of a government. This necessitates an appropriate web tool. In the current state of affairs, the choice narrows down to a distribution built on a powerful, scalable and adaptive Web Content Management System (WCMS). From amongst the Open Source alternatives given, Drupal stands out as a superior choice, as a tried and tested alternative. Drupal is specifically adopted as the technology platform for building websites of federal institutions in US and many other nations. The govCMS initiative of the Government of Australia is another prime example of using Drupal for e-governance initiatives on the web. Primary reason for this is, Drupal offers scalability to build websites ranging from simple to complex and customised websites. FEATURES IN DRUPAL OPTIMIZING E-GOVERNANCE INITIATIVES Notwithstanding the fact that there are a lot of CMS available out in the market, Drupal stands out from others due to its security, robustness, customizability and its ability to evolve with emerging trends in the digital technology space. Here are some of Drupal’s features that make it especially suitable for e-governance. Citizen Engagement APIs: Generate APIs for third party websites so that Agency details reach the citizens through multiple ways. Integrate third party APIs for offering services from other authorised sites. Social Media Integration: Merely publishing on website is not enough. The Drupal CMS platform provides all major social media integrations so that citizens receive updates instantly on social media. Custom Modules: Grievance Redressal module, RTI submission, SMS notifications, Polls etc are some custom modules designed to meet citizen needs on the website. Web Content Publishing Easy to Use Workflow: No matter who all are in charge of the website administration, user roles and permissions can be set to decide who publishes a content. By default there will be draft moderation, review, publish and unpublish states offering finite levels of control. Custom workflow can be created to suit the organisational needs. Built in Content Types: Whether the need be publishing of Government Orders, Gazette notifications, Events, News, Tenders, or Careers, specific content types can be incorporated for each of these. Along with this, revision and archiving helps to keep track of changes. Multilingual: Leveraging on the multilingual module of Drupal, the portal will enable easy publishing and dissemination of content in English and the official language(s) of that particular country/province/state. Role Based Content Access: Some contents/files can be made private and accessible to only those who have a particular role in the CMS. Media and Digital Asset Management: This feature helps to organise various media files to display them and reuse them in various formats like slideshows, image gallery and videos. Custom Theming and Modular Layout: Front end can be customised to suit the organisation branding while content blocks can be configured with simple drag and drop to suit the needs. Guarding Government/Citizen Data and Web Infrastructure Security: More than any other website, Government websites are vulnerable to security threat. Drupal 8 lines up a series of security features like Twig templates, no PHP input to core, exportable site configuration, hardened user sessions etc limiting penetrability to core through various actions. The dedicated community also identifies new threats and creates patches to ensure that vulnerability is restricted. DRUPAL 8 AS THE DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY PLATFORM Drupal 8 (D-8) is the latest offering from the community and it is a highly scalable platform that can create websites to handle millions of hits without affecting speed and performance. It is flexible to adding various functionalities and in handling large data. The architecture is designed for mobile first and it has excellent content authoring features with built in WYSIWYG editors. Flexible content delivery suits the API economy and D-8 offers seamless integration with the best-of-breed technologies to give the best digital experience. Advantages for Building and Maintenance of CMS platform on Drupal 8 for Government Agencies The CMS platform for government built on Drupal 8 comes with the following advantages that make it powerful and robust. No licensing cost on account of Drupal 8 being Open Source. No vendor lock in- as there is no mandatory lock in agreement with the provider. Since the source code is open, the Government has the option to develop a team to enhance the features on their own. Easy to upgrade and update given the vibrant community that backs Drupal and their practices of quick releases of updates and patches and commitment to roadmap. Agility is offered by the scalable and highly modular nature of Drupal making it easy to maintain, integrate with other systems and build additional features. Reusability is possible by coding as per Drupal coding standards making integration with other custom made Drupal applications extremely easy. Civic centred through simplifying website management and maintenance and cutting down expensive investments into those areas. Consistent brand experience using Atomic Design where design components are prepared at the atom level of the layout. Templates created out of these components ensures that the brand uniqueness is maintained. Further the components are reusable to create new layouts. This can generate an experience of familiarity with icons and layouts while visiting multi sites of a department or a ministry making site access convenient. Reduced complexity and effort duplication through modular components which is designed considering the typical content publishing needs of a Government agency. Quick onboarding of content publishers through a user friendly dashboard that enables easy content updating. Modification is easy without the need of any particular technical skill set. Easy management of a portfolio of sites using Multisite Feature of Drupal. Removes duplication of content updating efforts while maintaining data consistency. Reduced risk with common site architecture and validated code-Automated deployment of new modules and functionalities. Enhanced Security Capabilities of Drupal 8 for Government Agencies In built Drupal 8 security features ensures privacy. Clickjacking, XSS attacks, SQL injections, are prevented in core. Presentation layer and data is separated to prevent intrusion. Core Security of Drupal 8 takes care of basic security requirement. Development of best practises enhance the security of the site. Community contributions: Highly active community to detect threats and do patching. Data privacy is secured by building with high standards of security ensuring citizen's rights to privacy and protecting the government site from external attacks. Citizen Experience High-end User Experience-People are culturally more tech savvy, expecting quicker and interactive services and the framework is designed considering these new technical culture. Rich Citizen Engagement features including the following Multilingual Mobile first-Making the services reach the growing ‘mCitizens’ Location based content delivery-District based notifications Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) compliant-Ensuring inclusiveness by enabling accessibility for differently abled as well Social Media sharing-Ensures the policy awareness reaches the citizens quickly and directly High uptime leveraging on Drupal 8's core modularity and inherent strengths Due to these very same reasons, we recommend to design the CMS for governments using the latest version of Drupal. Drupal 8 platform is the most advanced in open source technology and offers a host of features to create the best user experience. By building a base version of a distribution in Drupal, it can be expanded in scope to suit the purpose of various government organisations. Zyxware Technologies has helped and is in the process of helping various governments in their e-governance initiatives. To know more, get in touch with us. (Edited by Nisha Oommen)
Step Up Your Customer Service Using Chatbots
The importance of synonyms, search suggestions and semantic search were discussed in the article "Search in Ecommerce: The Vital Little Details". These now are already quite commonplace and can be considered as standard features available in search. The next leap towards making search a smooth experience came with the evolution of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Intelligent Search - Current trends Thanks to Artificial Intelligence, the systems in place today are well aware of the context in which a user is accessing a page and are able to recommend or show contents based on the user context. AI is revolutionizing the experience of the online shoppers and retailers. While shoppers benefit from seamless experience, personalized recommendations and efficient support, retailers are able to capture volumes of data which can be used to drive more sales. In this article we focus on the recent AI trends that are being used by big retailers. Context-Based Personalization Using Natural Language Processing (NLP), which is one of the main fields in AI, it is now possible to bring about an interaction between a user and the website. Previously, all of the commands were run separately, but now a context-based conversion or conversational AI is getting popular. With the user’s page visit history and his interactions on various occasions, a context is created exclusively for him and is used for further communication with him. The result in improvement of this field is that now a user can place an order even via a chatbot or using voice commands. The improvement in the field of NLP has led to the emergence of chatbots, voice search, and visual search. Chatbots Bot guided commerce is the latest trend in the online retail sector. Today, with the backing of Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning, Chatbots are being used by different brands to provide customer support, recommend products and increase sales. Gartner predicts that by 2020, a person will have more conversation with bots than with their spouse. The business advantages of including chatbots in your retail site include Better customer service Create brand loyalty by providing personalized experiences to shoppers Reduced human resources and cut down customer service cost When it comes to managing thousands of one-to-one communication with consumers, retailers can use chatbots to decrease the gap between consumers and businesses. Chatbots with the ability to recommend products and learn from the interactions can help shoppers to find a product in less time. When you try to include a chatbot into your store, make sure you add a context aware chatbot. For instance, say you have an online flower delivery shop. When a customer provides you their email id/phone number and says that they would like to place an order for a bouquet of flowers, the chatbot can look up the previous orders of the shopper and can help ease the checkout process by asking questions that include" Would you like to order a hand tied bouquet of 12 yellow roses ? (Context: You had previously ordered a hand-tied bouquet of 12 yellow roses)", “Do you want this to be delivered to xxx? (Context: From your previous delivery address)”, “ Would you like to use COD? (Context: Your last payment method was COD)” etc. The chatbot can definitely reduce the time the shopper requires to purchase a bouquet rather than a non-contextual chatbot that may have more questions like, which bouquet he wants, how many roses he would like to have and what should be the delivery service, payment method etc. As per the ubisend 2017 survey conducted in UK, 1 in 5 consumers would consider purchasing goods and services from a chatbot. Checkout some e-commerce brands who have already included chatbots in their service. eBay Kip Voice Controlled E-commerce With the introduction of digital voice assistants like Alexa, Google Now, Siri and of course chatbots, the wind is blowing towards the conversational ecommerce. Once the convenience of these technologies are identified by shoppers, there is going to be a boom in conversational ecommerce. According to ‘Walker Sands 2017 Future of Retail Study’ that surveyed more than 1600 US consumers, one in 5 customers (19%) have made a voice purchase through Amazon Echo or another digital home assistant, and another third (33%) plan to do so in the next year. The best example of voice controlled e commerce today, is Amazon Alexa. Amazon claims that with its ‘2017 Holiday Season Sale’, millions of Prime members voice shopped with Alexa for gifts, Amazon devices and everyday household essentials. Echo Dot, Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote were among the most purchased items. Once the accuracy of the voice search is more precise, it is sure that the voice commerce is going to be more popular. Visual Search 2017 witnessed the emergence of VisualDiscovery tools in Pinterest. Pinterest introduced these tools claiming that it can see the world like you do. When you are out and when you see something that catches your eyes and if you don’t know how to convert this to search keywords, you can click the image using the Pinterest camera and see the item or related items as pins. You can try the lens on a dress and see the related items and you may get ideas on what other items goes along with it. You can point this to any food items and you may get interesting recipes. Source Not much later, Bing also announced their project Bing Visual Search with the tagline connect your camera to a deep search experience. Using the Bing Visual Search it is possible to get information about an item inside a picture. Say you see a home decor image and if you are interested in a particular chandelier, you can use the magnifying glass symbol and select the chandelier. Bing runs the visual search instantly and will provide you with the related items. Visual search reduces the number of steps the customer must take to purchase a product. Users don’t have to query and wait for the product they require. It also helps users who are “spearfishing” ie, who search for one specific product. More targeted results can be obtained using visual search. Slyce and Cortexica are two examples of tools that make it easier for retailers to integrate visual search into their sites. As the technology behind the visual search is being improved, let's look forward to more exciting developments from it. Using Drupal 8 and Drupal commerce 2.x, it is possible to bring fully integrated experience with the above technologies to the user. To know more about integrating the chatbot that best suits your business, get in touch with us!
Drupal - the best CMS for a SEO-friendly website
Google SERP (Search Engine Results Page) plays a vital role in deciding the future of any business, especially online businesses. Search engine results are responsible for driving traffic to websites and the results which are displayed on the first page are the most attractive to users like us. To achieve the top search engine rankings, the content on the webpage needs to be SEO-friendly. So no matter how cool your website looks or how user-friendly it is, if you want to draw in the maximum number of online visitors, your website has to be SEO-friendly. There are several ways in which the content can be SEO-optimized. A Content Management System (CMS) is very necessary to ensure proper SEO optimization. There are plenty of CMSs like Jhoomla, Wordpress and Drupal, among which Drupal is the most favoured CMS for websites all over the world. Here are 5 reasons why Drupal is the best CMS for creating a SEO-friendly website: SEO-friendly URLs: URLs are very important for driving traffic because search engines look for keywords in these URLs. A major advantage of using Drupal is that you can create individual URLs for the different content you create instead of one common URL. These individual URLs are referred to as URL aliases. Highly effective Taxonomy: Categorization is a piece of cake with Drupal’s in built taxonomy. You can create content and tag individual content with keyword terms. Categorization is very much required to make the content reader-friendly. In short, Drupal’s flexible and simple-to-use taxonomy makes your webpage SEO-friendly. Page Titles: Page titles are as important as URLs because: A keyword rich page title grabs the attention of the search engine It informs the reader about the page It is displayed in search engine results Drupal page title module can automatically create search engine friendly titles for your webpage. It can also create titles for the different individual nodes (content) after analysing each node Easy revision options: Every web page needs to have fresh content updated regularly to be search engine friendly. Google’s content analysis algorithms rank websites on the basis of fresh content. In Drupal, it is easy for users to go back and revise the content to add in new keywords, and to publish new content. SE0 modules in Drupal core: Drupal core offers a fabulous framework for structuring different content and for preventing duplicate content. Nodewords, path redirect, Search 404 and Path/Auto path are some of the SEO modules in Drupal that can make your website SEO-friendly. Over the years, Zyxware has been actively building SEO-friendly Drupal websites for several clients from different industry verticals. When it comes to achieving higher search engine rankings, we can guarantee that there is no other CMS that can stands close to Drupal’s SEO modules. To know more about our Drupal website development services, please contact us today.
Collaborative Learning and Networking in Business Setting
Knowledge Partner Network Kofi Annan, former General Secretary to UN and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate referred to knowledge as power, information as liberating, and education as the premise of progress. The sharing of knowledge helps in coping with the complexities in real-life situations; people coming together to make sense of the challenges they face through dialogue and joint problem-solving. What is Knowledge Partner Network? Knowledge can be defined as information received and interpreted to understand a situation, to apply to a challenge, or to make life better. The concept of knowledge generation and dissemination is deeply embodied in the process of making a difference. This extends beyond activities related to creating new insights and leads to innovation, discussions of how policy and actions can be changed for better. The Knowledge Partner Network is a collaboration we are envisioning with organizations/ institutions where the partnership will be mutually beneficial to creation and dissemination of knowledge ideas and practices. Knowledge partners could include people in the intersection of technology and e-commerce, media, education, public sector, and healthcare. People such as experienced professionals, marketing students, researchers. Background for this initiative Since 2006, we have been a Drupal partner for a number of clients across the world in retail, media, public sector, education, and healthcare. With many of these organizations, we have built long-standing technology partnerships, often stretching to over 5 years and in some cases over 8 years. As an organization, we are also committed to Open Source as a philosophy. We are one of the world's leading code contributors to Drupal. Another way in which we contribute is by documenting and sharing the technical solutions we provided, on our website. The rich experience on Drupal in multiple sectors has made our site a ‘go to place’ for Drupal programmers across the world when they are looking for solutions. On the business side, we have also made a transition from Drupal services provider to being business IT solutions provider with focus on the above sectors. While Drupal continues to be the centerpiece, we have added mobility, analytics, digital marketing to our suite of services and we bring in flavor of business IT consultancy into our engagements with select clients. We are looking to convert our site into a Knowledge Portal covering Business IT solutions. Our previous articles have been primarily about Drupal problem solving and it was well appreciated where a number of programmers across the world could find solutions to pressing problems they were trying to solve at their end. This is our inspiration to take the next step and build our site into a Business IT Solutions portal within the constraints of not harming client confidentiality and privacy, respecting their intellectual property and protecting our revenue possibilities. We want the problems to be well-defined ones with a solution direction that will be useful for our readers in the business community and the knowledge partner network. Our vision: Building network conducive to growth and development Knowledge Partner Network will create an environment conducive to innovation, through research of new ideas and trends, consolidation of known systems and processes, personal interactions that instigate and forge inventive processes. Guidelines, use case scenarios, lessons learned, and good practice documents are the important content in the process of attempting to make knowledge expressible and applicable. It involves identification of experts and bringing them together through communities and networks of practice. Are you the expert we are looking for? We invite you to come and be part of this Knowledge Partnering endeavor. Get in touch with us!
Drupal 8 the Right Choice for Digital Marketing?
In today’s digital world, one size fits all marketing is no longer relevant, instead, the focus is on contextual marketing and personalized customer experience across the entire sales funnel through digital platforms. Many businesses are working hard trying to build their customer engagement, but often fail because they are focused on any and all kind of interactions without considering the value that is added through the relationship. When a business uses Drupal 8 as its platform of choice, it takes ownership of the experience that is being delivered to customers. Drupal is in the forefront of digital platforms that foster deeper ties with the customer through the buyer journey. Drupal empowers you to create content to delight visitors, and capture their experiences and insights. The features of Drupal 8 platform that significantly improves customer relationship experience are Responsive design Easy content workflow management SEO friendly Ease to develop and manage microsites Multilingual Multi-sites customized delivery Cloud ready Omnichannel experience Google Analytics It is also possible to automate your Drupal site experience, dynamically render special offers displayed through the web and mobile channels, and provide closed-loop marketing by gathering and measuring interactions on the web. By listening, measuring, and analyzing customers across channels and even siloed marketing and relationship systems, these customer insights drive not only the content presented, but offer digital marketers an opportunity to drive business strategies across organizational boundaries. Here is a good representation of the various digital marketing aspects like a tube map. Source To accelerate the solution process, Drupal offers deep integrations with leading web analytics platforms as well as CRM, email campaign, and marketing automation systems to ensure customer insights are captured, measured, tested and optimized for the next interaction. Integrations with Drupal based website Drupal offers many systems of engagement to deliver captivating front end experiences across sites, channels and devices. Marketing automation tools: Act-on, Marketo & HubSpot Marketing Hubs Social media channels: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google+ & others Web Analytics: Google Analytics, Omniture & PPC Email marketing tools: YMLP & Chimp Content Syndication: RSS CRM Integration: Salesforce, SugarCRM ERP & ECM: SAP Drupal offers a single, easy to use system for marketers to deliver content, community, and commerce seamlessly to customers. Drupal offers backend integration to leading systems such as CRM, ERP, marketing automation and other systems of record. For a detailed cheat sheet on the various capabilities of Drupal, check this infographic on Drupal Capabilities. By leveraging these digital solutions on the Drupal platform, you create rich experiences, connect more deeply with customers and convert more prospects into buyers. These digital experiences are delivered seamlessly across web, mobile, and social channels, all while layering in and integrating with existing systems of record that are already working well in your environment. Here are a few case studies of how clients are using the Drupal platform in their digital marketing initiatives: Translation helps in attracting foreign visitors: The case study is an example of how multilingual capability of Drupal helped in bringing in more footprints in the awareness stage of their digital marketing endeavor. 62% boost in coversion through performance optimization: This case study is a good example of how Search Engine Optimization(SEO) helped in conversion. Improving the speed of processing and sending personalized emails: Even while this client wanted to send personalized emails, speed was equally crucial. Handling traffic spikes: This case study is a prime example of how we helped a client cope with traffic that their site’s architecture was not designed for. The success of digital marketing is when you stand apart from the crowd by delivering personalized, tailored campaigns and content. And finally, it requires increasing your digital footprint by offering fulfilling experiences across all digital channels and devices that the customers want to use to consume content and interact with the brand. Are you still not sure? Get in touch with our solutions expert!
Walk - In Drive for Software Engineers/Programmer Analyst
We are looking to add more Technical Leads/ Software Engineers to join our fast growing software development and consultancy operations. Please refer below to the details: Responsibilities of Software Engineer: 1. Software Engineers will be expected to develop web based applications using Drupal/PHP 2. You will be required to interact with clients and analyze requirements as and when needed 3. Mentoring new developers will be part of your responsibilities 4. It would get a learning and enriching experience as you would be required to work with senior team members who will help you grow your technical abilities   Must Have: Strong in PHP/Drupal/ MySQL Work experience of 2 - 6 years in Web Application Development Proven track record of developing web sites, applications and solutions Experienced in HTML, CSS, Javascript Exposure to coding frameworks or CMS Proficient in English, both oral and written Marks in mathematics should be above 80 in 10th and 12th std. Should possess strong analytical skills Should be able to learn on the job Please note that we have all positions open at both Kochi and Trivandrum (Technopark) locations. You may walk-in if you prefer Kochi/Trivandrum as your base location.   Candidates who meet the above requirements should walk in with their updated resume. Those who are unable to make it to the venue can send their updated resume to careers@zyxware.com with the Subject Line: ‘Walk-In- Software Engineer - SE011904’. Selection Process @ Zyxware Technologies We strive to ensure that there is a good fit between our selected candidate and Zyxware Technologies. We make every effort to be fair and transparent with candidates through the process. We encourage the candidates to get a good understanding of Zyxware Technologies during the process. A brief description of the selection stages are given below. Round 1: Objective round - This test consists of multiple choice questions on general programming concepts and English proficiency Round 2 : PHP/Drupal Programming Test (Machine Test of 1 hour) followed by Technical interview Round 3 : Discussion with HR Date & Time: April 13, 2019 (Saturday) Walk-in-between: 9:30 AM - 3:00 PM Venue : Zyxware Technologies, XI/86 L, Chalakkara Road, Padamugal, Kakkanad P. O., Kochi, Kerala - 682030 Contact Person: Lijo Abraham (8606011187) Kindly note that this walk-in interview is for experienced candidates only. For more details please call the above number. APPLY ONLINE About Zyxware Technologies  Zyxware Technologies is an end to end IT solutions provider since 2006. We have delivered over 175+ projects in industry verticals like news and entertainment media, e-commerce, non profits, governments, education institutions and many more. We have a global clientele covering countries like USA, U.K., Netherlands, Australia, Korea and much more. We are a company with a strong commitment towards our society and an aggressive vision and mission aligned with the same. We are also active in the Free Software community in Kerala and work with government, private businesses and non profits to take forward Free Software and its philosophy. Our Free Software contributions include Freedom Walk (http://www.freedomwalk.in/), Freedom Toaster, trainings and developer camps in Engineering Colleges and Government institutions in Kerala and outside.
Zyxware starts US subsidiary DxForge Inc
Zyxware has formally started its on the ground operations in the US with its subsidiary DxForge Inc head quartered in Hackensack, NJ. Anoop John, Founder and CTO of Zyxware has moved to the US to set up the operations of the US subsidiary and build a team for the US subsidiary. With the explosive growth of Drupal in the enterprise market in the US it is imperative that we get closer to our current and future clients to be able to continue to deliver value to their businesses. As Drupal establishes its credibility as a leader in the Digital Transformation space the relevance of close engagement with the client stakeholders becomes even more important for the success of Drupal projects. DxForge Inc is established as a Delaware C corporation and is registered to operate in the state of New Jersey as a foreign qualified corporation. We are also looking to continue to operate under the Zyxware brand in the US market. DxForge Inc also is registered to do business as (dba) Zyxware Technologies. We are planning to start offices in New Jersey and California in the current year and expand to other states in the coming years. Our office address in the US is DxForge Inc190 Moore St Suite 308Hackensack, NJ 07601

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