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An Executive's Guide to Custom Software Development


  • Author: The Konverge Team
  • Published: 2/14/2019 9:19:18 AM
  • minute read

Custom Softare Development

As a leader, it is imperative to understand how every department operates and interacts within the organization. In the digital world, a good CEO and outstanding software are imperative for a company’s success. Regardless of the product or service provided, there is value in utilizing customized tools.

Over the past few years, companies have shifted away from siloed departments. The focus has shifted towards a more open relationship between departments, teams, and individuals. Technology aids this communication process. It has made the process faster, more reliable and effective. Well designed software assists with data sharing regardless of where employees are located.

In spite of all the technological advancements and its merits, the software gets very little attention from the C-suite. There is very little interaction between the C-suite and the software management of a company. Software strategy is often determined three-four layers down the hierarchy. However, it is time to rectify this, a CEO needs to have a thorough understanding of the software it company uses.

Identifying and Understanding the Business Process

Custom Softare Development

Business process management is a comprehensive way of achieving a company’s goals and objectives. Companies use different methods for this. It is imperative to understand the business process as it increases the effectiveness of a company’s actions outside as well as inside.

Every aspect of an enterprise activity must be subjected to effective management. Only a good business management process makes it possible for a company to evaluate and continually improve its business operations. This can include tasks from communication, marketing, manufacturing to other operational elements.

In short, a good and reliable business process increases the effectiveness and efficiency of any company. It helps the organization to stay ahead of their competitors and be more responsive to the ever-changing environment.

The Advantage of Focusing on Optimizing Processes and Resources

In today’s competitive environment finding business success can be difficult. It requires a concentrated effort to streamline business costs and eliminate waste. However, a focus on technology along with the implementation of business process optimization is a recipe for success.

Some of the benefits of optimization are evident through efficiency improvements, waste reduction, and overall safety. Through the use of custom software, these benefits can be extended even further making companies even more profitable.

Custom software provides you with the opportunity of easily identifying skill gaps in your teams. By resolving training issues, your teams are better able to perform tasks and meet deadlines. However, tools like customer journey mapping help businesses visualize all of the steps a customer takes in dealing with a company. Through journey maps, businesses are able to easily identify gaps in processes and other roadblocks that cause customers undue hardship. Focusing efforts on removing these gaps and roadblocks helps customers directly and improves their underlying loyalty.

Quantifying What Matters to Your Business

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Metrics are important for the efficient and effective running of a business. Metrics, when used correctly, provides key insights that make it possible to take the right decisions. These insights can make the difference between the success and the failure of a business.

Depending on your industry or vertical and even the area of the business you are in, the metrics that matter to you could be quite different. Many businesses have taken to using standard scoring systems like the Net Promotor Score (NPS) as a general guideline on the service they provide. They complement this with more granular customer satisfaction metrics through the use of surveys or other similar tools. Those however really only cover the external metrics.

Internally it is important to measure efficiencies and overall resource utilization at a minimum. Clearly defined metrics help ensure that your business is run well and that your customers are happy with the service being provided.

It’s difficult for businesses to dedicate teams of resources simply to gather information. That’s why choosing the right tool to implement all of this is critical. After all, the data and information gathered is only useful if it is actioned.

Defining Clear Requirements and Objectives

As a senior manager, the success and failure of the company’s objectives that you set rests on your shoulders. Therefore, it is imperative to set objectives that are achievable and define these objectives as clearly as possible. This is especially important when it comes to a custom software solution.

With off-the-shelf software, the product is designed to meet a mass market audience. This product is often created by committee and while it often does a good job, it will not meet your objectives 100%. You see, each business is different and expecting one product to meet the requirements for every single one is not really feasible.

So when you’ve decided to go the custom software route, there are some things to keep in mind. Firstly involve your team members in the process. Having them help in defining the project goals, increases engagement but also provides you with additional criteria. It is important to share the big picture of what you are trying to accomplish, as the goals will become meaningful for an employee if they are tired to a larger organizational goal.

Secondly, understand what your actual end goal is. What should the application do and how will it meet a specific need. What other internal systems and tools does it need to “talk to”. What reports and automation are needed versus nice to have? The more specific you are the better in this step. Understand how you are going to measure success and failure. Measurable goals have a higher completion rate.

Finally, it is important to have a deadline.

Redesigning the Business for Operational Excellence

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Businesses have embraced the concept of process redesign as a key priority but there is no one right path to Operational Excellence. Generally speaking, redesign strategies focus on best practices to achieve success. One of these tenants that it is common to most of the strategies is the importance of technology.

In one facet alone - that of customer experience, technology has changed the way customers interact with businesses. Companies have come to realize that customer experience matters when it comes to business growth. Through the use of surveys and journey maps, executives are better able to determine specific customer pain points. By removing roadblocks from the customer you improve their satisfaction. You also create a more streamlined internal process that is more efficient.

The same process applies to other areas of the business, be that manufacturing, HR, service delivery or sales. Technology can be used to track process gaps throughout the business. Automation and tools can help simplify interactions and provide additional efficiencies to the business.

Reinventing Business Model Using a Digital Solution

Custom Softare Development

Currently, we see the rapid expanding of machine learning and accelerated connectivity. Today’s technology will help you find exponential improvement in terms of efficiency. It will help you deliver new hyper-personalized customer experiences. It can drive efficiencies in the field and improve communication throughout the organization.

This is where custom software comes into play. By understanding what matters to your business and its customers, you are able to design a solution that will exceed your business goals. Building a customized solution allows you to realize significant efficiencies through integration with other tools within the business. In addition, by using a tool that is customized to your actual business processes and resources, you are able to bypass some of the hoops that other off the shelf products would have you go through.

Aligning the Organization to deliver against Market Needs through Digital Advantage Once again, custom software plays an important role in helping align an organization. By building a product that takes advantage of all of the different customer touch points, it’s possible to ensure that your customers can interact with all levels of your organization quickly and easily.

Modern digital analytics tools have the ability to provide businesses with a wealth of insight. These tools tend to measure customer experience using an omnichannel approach where CRM systems, phone, chat, web and all other customer touch points are all integrated. Having all of this information immediately accessible regardless of who is speaking to your customer and where they are located can catapult a business forward.

Conclusion

Although many organizations have taken advantage of digital technology, many have not mastered it. Companies regardless of the product or service, need to embrace technology. While off the shelf products exist for many different parts of a business, custom software is the true solution. Buying off-the-shelf software is a quick and cheap solution, but it is important to realize that there are many hidden costs that need to be accounted for. Some of these costs include the lack of integrations and customization available. Others include consultancy fees which can often be many multiples of the software cost by itself. Building a personalized product that meets the specific needs of a business is a cost-effective solution for the long term.

Konverge Digital Solutions is Custom Software Development and business transformation solution provider. For the past 25 years, customers have been coming to Konverge for help with leveraging technology to meet their organizational objectives. Konverge’s consulting practice includes custom software solutions, Mobile app development,AI, IoT, and Connected Devices software solutions.

Konverge's software development Toronto is 100% Canadian owned, we work closely with medium and large enterprises across industries and across Canada and internationally to deliver best in class enterprise digital transformation solution.

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