Whether you’re moving files or have a more complicated workflow that you’d like to simplify, sometimes there’s just not a tool out there that addresses your company’s specific needs. In that situation, you may wonder if it’s time to enlist a specialist to provide you with custom software. If a job seems too hard, then you’re not using the right tool.
Customization services may have a bad rap as being expensive, which is a subjective term. If your workflow issues are ultimately solved, then your input of resources will be worth it. Customization, which isn’t just for the “big” companies out there, becomes cost-effective when you can automate a process from taking hours to taking just minutes. If a process is frustrating or painful, it can be improved.
Take these steps to decide if it’s time for a customization tool to improve a workflow:
1. Perform an honest self-evaluation within your company. Determine your company’s weaknesses. Brainstorm ways a frustrating process in your company could be improved.
2. Note your labor-intensive repetitive tasks. Find the obvious processes that cause your staff to groan when they need to be performed.
3. Focus on the process(es) sapping your productivity. How much time could you save if a problematic process were automated?
4. Identify one specific problem you’d like to address, then get company buy-in to develop a tool to address it. If management wants a cost-benefit analysis, that’s easier to show when you address one pain point.
Maybe your staff enjoys managing projects but not managing data – for instance menial tasks like moving files around. The more places files need to be backed up, the more time can be saved on that one process alone. If you can improve on a process by even 10%, the savings will add up. And the more labor you can save, the faster you can get a return on your investment.
As an example, whether it’s moving files to update them or performing backups, many companies find they lose hours of precious staff time each day managing those file transfers. This pain is so widespread among a surprising variety of industries, from construction companies to legal firms, that the specialized software tool 360 Sync was developed to address it.
If you feel too close to a problem to diagnose it, then it will be helpful to bring in a partner who can take an unbiased look at your everyday processes. Another benefit of this is the insight an outside partner can have about other companies that have had experiences similar to yours.
When you repair the time-wasting processes that are sapping your productivity, when you automate repetitive tasks that no one enjoys, then your teams can have more time for creative problem solving. When employees enjoy their jobs, they’re naturally more productive.
In episode 65 of Bridging the Gap podcast, I spoke with Michael Reuter about the development of 360 Sync and how it saves companies hours and dollars by automating file transfers. Listen today and hear Michael’s fascinating description of how this product continues to evolve.