Barclays Africa Group

Helping one of South Africa's largest banks to create rich and engaging user journeys for their customers.

Collaborations such as the one with Cognifide are an excellent example of how we’re creating and leveraging relationships that will enable us to accelerate our digital transformation, deliver more, and create the kind of digital experiences that our customers deserve, faster and more effectively than we’ve ever done before.
CIO, Digital and Distribution, Absa


Absa is a member of Barclays Africa Group and one of the five big banks in South Africa. They approached Cognifide in November 2015 as their content management system was in need of an overhaul. The bank's retail site was developed in 2007 and no longer offered Absa the agile marketing environment that its customers were demanding.

At the same time, Absa made the strategic decision to switch to the cloud and, as part of the ensuing  digital transformation, asked Cognifide to help them create a brand new site, built on Adobe Experience manager 6.1.


A key driver was to improve the customer experience. In order to do so, Cognifide had to dramatically improve the author experience. This was vital so that Absa and their agencies could push content out to customers at the right time, on their chosen device and with a personal touch.

Using Cognifide’s own pioneering AEM accelerator, Zen Garden and atomic design principles, Cognifide created a modular concept. This was created using 80% out-of-the-box components. Not only does this ensure consistency and efficient scalability, it also means that designs are responsive by default.

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Introducing Zen Garden’s new Touch UI interface added further to the author experience.  It bought a new look and feel, making it accessible to content creators on both desktop and mobile devices. This new author environment was designed not only to give the Absa publishing team new-found agility but to enable their agencies to create campaigns and microsites within hours rather than days.

As a consequence, Absa customers will enjoy a new, richer journey with enhanced features and a more personalised experience. Cognifide used Adobe Target to create the customer segmentation, integrating with Adobe Analytics, deployed by WPP sister agency, Acceleration.


With Absa and Cognifide working in a unique blended team, we were able to on board the publishing team during the later sprint phases. This meant that, even prior to launch, they were trained to make content updates, build templates and deliver new components. This accelerated delivery approach, thanks to AEM Zen Garden, will significantly reduce the publishing team’s dependency on software development and shift the power from developer to content creator.

In just 6 months, Absa have shifted to the cloud; migrated their retail presence to Adobe Experience Manager 6.1; moved processes from waterfall to agile and created a rich, personalised customer experience. The brand new author tool kit will enable consistent, responsive, scalable publishing to happen when the customer demands it.

80% of components out-of-the-box means efficiency & scalability

A rich customer journey across 750 pages

6 months from discovery to deployment

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