Software manufacturers, especially when they have grown rapidly, often have a structure that is difficult to recognize and no longer functioning optimally. Roles are no longer clearly defined. Competence overlaps exist. The means of support have exceeded their capacity. The documentation is outdated. First customers jump off. Workflows overlap and have become less effective. Time problems are the order of the day.
Often one or more of the above descriptions apply to companies that produce and/or distribute software. Then the targeted recording of the entire process is absolutely necessary in order to establish a new and effective structure.
However, this is often not possible under one’s own steam. Lack of time, problem-oriented views and dissatisfaction often do not allow a sufficient and neutral view. For you as a software producer or reseller I offer consulting in the following areas:
- Technical Support
- Technical Documentation
- Inteface Optimization
- Paperless Office
- Workflow Optimization
Technical support, both in-house and for the customer, usually does not grow dynamically with the number of users. Often, attempts are made to continue meeting the growing requirements with tried and tested means. However, these do not prove themselves any more precisely when the requirements and complexity increase significantly.
The result can then be declining support quality, poor availability, customer dissatisfaction and frustration among supporters. In the worst case, you lose customers and experienced employees. This can only be countered by honest analysis, consistent intervention and targeted reorganization, otherwise the symptoms will increase.
The technical documentation is always in a difficult role between development and customer. It must receive the information from the development department in order to make it understandable for the customer. Without sufficient hints from support and presales, however, documentations often lose their relation to the real application. This often results in outdated, incomplete or even self-documenting documentation.
The quality of your technical documentation is a figurehead by which your customers measure you. Here it is important to find out the most meaningful variant in your workflow and thus achieve the quality that your software and your customers deserve.
The various phases of testing from development testing to systematic testing of predefined scenarios up to free testing in application simulation are important steps that are indispensable. End customer testing can also be a very useful addition, as long as your customer’s patience, time and nerves are not overstretched.
But care and attention is required in all these steps. Here it depends on the right procedures as well as on the experience of the test persons and the communication among each other. Don’t leave it to chance whether your next software update has to be withdrawn after just a few hours due to significant defects or whether it hits the target as planned.
In software development, it is never possible to deliver one hundred percent error-free. This is in the nature of things. But testing can definitely be organized so that a presentable update or even a new version can be delivered that meets the planned requirements.
Technical interfaces always have potential for optimization, because what is written on one side is not always what is read or expected on the other. It is always worth taking a look at the extent to which technical interfaces can be optimized by small adjustments, which then often have a big effect.
The human interface is also an elementary factor which should not be ignored, but which is usually underestimated. This applies not only to interpersonal cooperation within a department, but also to communication across the board. I always have a look at this during my consultation.
I can support you by a specific analysis of your entire internal workflow to grasp the existing and grown structures, to visualize and to understand, in order to stimulate afterwards the changes, which produce clarity, efficiency and satisfaction on all sides. In addition to optimizing technical interfaces, human interfaces play at least as important a role for me.
In the case of optimizations of a technical nature, I also gladly take over the management of the communication between the writing and the reading sides.
I am also happy to mediate in the coordination and harmonisation of human interfaces. If required, however, I also have an optional professional on board who is specially trained to deal with interpersonal conflicts in a systemic way.
In the course of a growing sustainable private way of life, which most of us fortunately already pursue, it is now appropriate to allow these to return to the professional world as well.
This includes, among other things, the switch from the classic printer and file folder to digital recording and storage on naturally CO2-neutral servers with a legally secure location.
By the way, if this step is organized and consistently taken, it will not only increase the effectiveness of your work. You even save time and money and you are more flexible.
For those who prefer to print everything on paper and file it in folders, this is initially incomprehensible. I understand that well, because I did it myself for a long time. But I am happy to help you to show the advantages and to initiate the change, because I myself work paperless in my private and business life and profit from it every day.
I support you with any kind of digitization. Be it 2D or 3D data, datasets, documents or libraries. However, my focus is not only on the collection of the data itself, but also on the type of storage, use, quality analysis and investigation of the necessity of collection.
The topic of workflow optimization sounds very abstract at first, but from experience it has an enormous potential to lead internal processes to success or failure. Because only if the processes within the company are coordinated with each other, an effective and satisfied work is possible.
Traditionally, companies that use, produce, support, maintain and further develop software have certain workflows. These have mostly grown historically. Sometimes they are defined more, sometimes less. Somehow the grown system still works, but it doesn’t run so well anymore.
If you have recognized the need to update the workflows, then I will support you with the conversion. Only if development, technical documentation, testing, support and sales work together smoothly will you be successful in the end.