I’ll be frank. Some of the best companies in the world are using really awful software. It can be slow, complicated, have limited capabilities, hide critical information, be boring to watch, or all of the above. All of these issues have a negative impact on employee morale and productivity. These are key factors that the data shows have a significant effect on the overall success of the business.
Gallup estimates that disengaged or disgruntled employees cost the U.S. economy $ 450 billion to $ 550 billion in lost productivity each year. Yes, it’s a billion with a “b”, which means that there are millions of employees who go to work every day and who are inefficient or demotivated. While enterprise software is not the only cause of these issues, it is a known contributor.
Bad software can make simple tasks tedious and frustrating. Simple things like finding important documents, communicating with coworkers, and knowing when company events are happening can require navigating a maze of boxes, windows, and forms in company software.
So why is business software so poorly built? According to Sean Nolan, a thought leader in enterprise software modernization and CEO of Blink, it’s the fact that software developers don’t keep users in mind from the start.
“When these programs are designed, their primary purpose is to provide essential business functionality,” says Nolan. “It’s an important goal, but it doesn’t take into account the people who have to use the software on a daily basis and the effect that non-user-friendly features can have on the success of the business. “
There are new technologies that have become all the rage over the past couple of years that are helping to rectify this problem. These technologies can be integrated into existing business software systems and dramatically increase their usability and efficiency. These are three features that business software desperately needs.
3 Features Many enterprise software solutions are missing
An easier way to search
Peter Drucker, who is considered the father of modern management, has argued for decades that knowledge workers are the future of the global economy. In fact, he first coined the term “knowledge work” in his 1959 book. The landmarks of tomorrow. It follows quite logically that for knowledge workers to be effective, they must have access to information. “It’s the information,” Drucker wrote, “that enables knowledge workers to do their jobs.”
That is why enterprise software should equip their employees with research capabilities. Research is already part of our knowledge culture. When we have a question, we turn to a search engine on a smartphone and make the relevant query. But relatively few companies have the same kind of capacity in their own knowledge space.
“Employees can waste countless hours searching for job-critical information,” says Nolan. “But what’s even worse is when they naturally get frustrated and give up. That’s the real cost of hidden information and lack of search functions.
Search functions can and should be connected to all software and applications that employees regularly use. Today, these solutions come out of a box or can be customized for more specific needs.
More efficient chat
Communication is changing. Not only is it more and more digital, but it is also more and more dynamic. Email is now one of the least effective means of communication, having been replaced by other channels that allow quick responses, discussion groups and smart notification features.
The argument here is the same: information is often held by individuals, so for information to flow as freely as possible, the channels of communication need to be as efficient as possible. Much can be written about email failures in this regard, but suffice it to say that any technology that can alleviate the pain of seeing 1,000 unread emails in your inbox each morning is a necessary addition!
Chat is also more closely related to the way people communicate outside of work. Instead, we regularly send SMS, FaceTime, WhatsApp or use social media networks to communicate with each other. Communication channels in the workplace need to reflect these media more closely.
The third and final tech upgrade on this list is for robots. But these are not ordinary robots. They are smart robots that are powered by artificial intelligence (AI).
AI was all the rage last year, but not enough people are actually using it. Its potential is almost limitless, but in the case of modernizing enterprise software, its role is simple. An intelligent robot is a virtual assistant with which you can chat, get information, use to schedule appointments, and which functions as your second brain.
“A well-designed bot makes an employee’s job more enjoyable. It removes the tedious and frustrating aspects of working in the digital age, ”says Nolan. “And it helps declutter and organize your workflow. All of these upgrades are essential to improve efficiency.
Humans have been forced to work with programs designed to be functional instead of intuitive. But this new wave of technology is bridging that gap and making the way we interact with technology more human.
Stress Photo via Shutterstock