In our businesses we spend a lot of time seeking understanding: what is the right number of prospects to convert to customers? Have we made our inventory management process as efficient as it needs to be? How do we get more people to use our web application?
Understanding business, just like everything else in life, is elusive. Like staring expectantly at an autostereogram (popular wall art in the 90s) but the image never appears.
We were with a customer last week whose young daughter had accompanied her to the office for the day. As our customer explained how we helped her understand business performance by building out an online database to manage a complex workflow that several people owned parts of, her daughter brought us the picture at the top of this post. It was a beautiful butterfly, but you could only see it after connecting the dots. Suddenly, we had the perfect metaphor for how we’d helped our customer: by building a web based business application with automated reporting, we had connected the dots.
This is what gets us out of bed every day: we know that someone has some dots in their business that need to be connected, and we know we can find a way to connect them.
Here are four ways that we connect the dots for our customers:
1. We improve processes by moving manual processes and spreadsheets onto streamlined, web-based business applications.
Often times, businesses don’t have the time or technological know-how to build digital processes that highlight performance. Getting meaningful reporting from manual processes is so labor intensive that the effort to report performance metrics competes with running the business, leaving the dots unconnected. We start with business process modeling to build processes with automated business intelligence reporting to deliver insight without the headache to get it.
2. We design web applications that help our customers achieve business goals.
Many times, and the case of CRM is a good example, employees are frustrated with how business applications get in the way of or only partially help them to get their work done. How do you know whether this is a result of using the wrong business application, or of designing the use of the right business application in the wrong way?
We emphasize the critical importance of structuring conversations with application users that illuminates what the application requirements are and how it really should work.
3. We introduce our customers to key experts to help them grow their business.
No company faces problems limited to only process automation, CRM or web application development. Inevitably, our customers mention challenges they seek to solve outside of our domain of expertise. Our first goal is to help our customers be successful, not just to sell them more stuff. Because we’ve had the good fortune to build a network of outstanding experts, we are able to make introductions to trusted professionals when customers express needs outside our domain of expertise.
4. We provide trusted mind-share to goals our customers do not have the time to focus on.
There are only so many hours in the day. Our customers generally maximize their time and talent to the most important two or three initiatives that will help them grow their business and deliver to existing customers. Usually business process modeling, technology selection and implementation doesn’t stand as one of the business priorities. Because of our extensive experience in both publicly traded and startup companies across multiple industries and in many operating environments, we bring a level of business acumen that allows us to play as a utility player to deepen the bench of your organization.