I Love You, Software
During my travels over the recent days I had cause to be reminded just how integrated and intimate pretty much everything in our daily lives is to . . . . software. Somewhat apropos maybe to discuss such a love relationship so shortly after Valentine’s Day, but the event in question led me to consider just how fragile this particular relationship is.
While waiting to board one of my many flights on Tuesday evening, we were told about 45 minutes before the flight was due to depart that this particular well known US airline had just grounded its ENTIRE fleet of Boeing 757 aircraft. Now, as you can imagine, it’s quite disconcerting to discover that the aircraft you are about to board is subject to a maintenance inspection that is considered so important, they ground an entire fleet of aircraft because of it. Unfortunately, and as is all too common in these situations, information is not particularly forthcoming. “We should take off this evening; we don’t know how long the delay is; we’ll keep you updated; the maintenance team is looking at it now. [etc, etc and more stalling for time comments]
So, the more innovative are already on their phones to their travel agents discovering their options, while the more curious are on their iPads trying to understand the reason for the delay. And of course, the internet, once again, does not let us down. Pretty quickly the information within the passenger community starts to spread and it is in fact a software ‘patch/issue/glitch’ that needs rectifying. Interesting huh! A software issue in a modern aircraft can ground an entire fleet.
Well, the good news was that after a delay of some hours, we eventually left the east coast for the west, however, missed our connection and got stuck in San Francisco with three hours to sleep prior to the re-booked flight to our onward destination. The joys of travel!
If you are now suspicious how tenuous my link to something more palpable for you is, let me unfold the rest of my thoughts. It struck me that this relationship, and expectation from ‘software’ is only truly valid when we stop seeing software as technology in and of itself, but rather as an enabler. In the corporate world, we should use software as a tool to drive us to higher goals, more noble and lofty objectives that otherwise our businesses simply couldn’t reach. These goals must be tangible from a human perspective. Whether it is to reduce time and complexity for our technicians to complete their tasks, to provide our decision makers with more empowerment and more intelligence to guide to more ‘valuable’ decisions, or to provide our customers with more meaningful, frequent, and engaging information, it ultimately has to help us do business in a better way, improving the quality of experience for all in the chain on the way.
This, my friends, is the standard we like to seek when exploring the value that ClickSoftware solutions bring to our customers (and theirs), and why projects in Workforce Management, that empower decision makers (perhaps making decisions automatically) typically have more engagement and interest in reshaping not just the views of the possible, but the processes and experience of the extended user community.
And as to my flight, if only there was some ‘software’ that would allow us to SMS/email or call our customers and let them know of the delays we are facing, the reasons why, and quickly reset expectation and rest calmed nerves.
…. Oh, that’s right, there is.