We are so far down the road of technology we often forget how expensive, hard and bug-laden custom software projects used to be. We could hire a developer, and without truly being accurate on our requirements, they would code and miss the mark repeatedly. Regardless, their billable time reflected our errors in thinking and clarity. That was the choice we had before the age of cloud, Ruby on Rails and apps.
No, today’s powerful software companies did not sit around dreaming about giving you $20/month software to specifically run your business. Some are familiar or native to your industry, thus, they can get the requirements aligned closely. But, your nuance and preferences still make software an almost fit.
You can get closer with customizations like Salesforce.com and manipulate fields, workflows and programming apart from coding to support your data inputs and outputs.
And, where there are gaps, you can integrate with middleware automation like Zapier or IFTTT to add functionality from one software platform to another.
We have access to more than enough software to make our teams and businesses efficient and deliver a high level of customer service. We don’t have to code in generalized workflows. We can customize, integrate and implement.
But, we can’t get snobby and think everything is free. Something for nothing is a pipedream and unfair to creators.
Also, we have to have a humility when we approach business systems. It’s a complex puzzle of what will work when it comes to managing data and helping users adopt. That’s not free either. There’s cost in time, thinking and effort.
As we become less dependent on users, who have traditionally been the bottleneck in implementations, and AI with automation can get triggers, work and execution done, the friction of software can fade to the background. We don’t have to wrestle as much with the gaps and expectations when machines can show up, not complain and simply execute a designed script.
You still have to know what you want and be clear architecting repeatable or rules-based solutions. You have to know business and prioritize the customer experience. Software is there to help and can get out of the way with our advances.
You still have to run your business and you still have to be smart about how to apply logic, integrations and workflows. We just have the benefit of a remarkable ecosystem of options, platforms and talent out there which makes selling, operating and delivering easier.
In this downtime, you likely will have to cut costs. Think about giving yourself options with more technology, automation and integrations. It can alleviate overhead, manual tasks and errors. This makes you more robust for other impacts to your business should they come.
Where can you integrate solutions?