Why the Process Matters More than the Technology

I talked in another post how process is important. And look I did all the things. There was even a graphic on the doctorate knowledge expansion model. I’m kinda proud of it.

But. BUT. From experience I know that this is not the end of the topic. I’ve seen too many examples in my career where people look to “smear some nerd” on a problem and hope it improves. OR even worse they listen to the sales person who says that their technology will immediately make them sound smarter, attract others, and increase their height. In other words it solves everything just by purchasing and using the software.

If you’ve been adult long enough you know that NO software instantly fixes everything.

I cannot stress the above enough but let me take a moment and expand.

Since most of this audience will be familiar with Salesforce, I’m going to use this market space. I’ve been fortunate to watch it grow and change through the years and will freely say that the feature set can solve a lot of business issues. However, it will only solve those problems WHEN USED.

Holy moly.. Do a search for user adoption and how many million results are returned?

Salesforce knows that this is an issue. So much that their training arm has a “User Adoption Adoption Service” (apologies for the PDF) that can help you use the tool.

There are multiple whole companies dedicated to effective usage of these tools. I know several of them and love them. They do a great job of helping educate and keep educated the user base.

Ultimately though, all of these services cannot fix:

  • A process that is too cumbersome, complex, or manual
  • Lack of enforcement of better processes and tools
  • General laziness

A new or enhanced tool can only help so much. We’ve seen it too much where the process is not changed and so the problem is still the same just with a different user interface. That does not solve the problem.

Think about these questions for a bit with your current tool set:

  • Could we automate “this” more and remove steps? What are the barriers?
  • What takes our people more time than it should and is overly complicated? (I love to use approvals and time cards as examples here)
  • What slows us down from accepting updating processes (the always wonderful “Well when we tried this before?” and “That is not how we have done it in the past!” excuses)

Stop and rethink. Gather some people. Be open to change. And understand that process matters far far more than the technology since the technology cannot solve a bad process alone.

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