Technology speeds ahead and businesses lag behind – that is the reality we encounter everyday here at Crow Canyon Software. Technology advances rapidly. All of us see this as we are barraged daily with new features and enhancements to the products we use.
When we open our phones, there are apps to be updated; in web development tools, the plugins have frequent updates; when we launch a desktop app, we often get notices about new updates and releases.
Those are just some examples of what we encounter with the many devices and applications we use every day. Frequent updates are fine – some are actually quite useful — but how can businesses possibly keep up?
Keeping Up With SharePoint & Office 365
Being SharePoint and Office 365 application developers, we keep abreast of the latest from Microsoft by attending conferences, meeting with Microsoft staff and MVPs, reading blogs, trialing new products, etc. We are deeply involved in and aware of the changes Microsoft puts out for its programs. We have to be, as these affect our customers, our applications, and our development plans.
But if it is more than enough for us to keep up, especially with Office 365 being one of the biggest “update-aholics”, it is hard to imagine other organizations staying current. This creates an interesting gap between what is out there and available, and what businesses actually use.
We have customers still on SharePoint 2010. Others are using InfoPath forms, Lotus Notes, Access databases, and other legacy programs. Still others, quite a few actually, use paper forms for processes that would be much better in an automated, electronic system.
Keeping Your Organization Up-to-date
How can these organizations – maybe this includes yours? – move to more up-to-date and effective systems? How can they take advantage of the many features and capabilities in Office 365 and SharePoint that would benefit their customers and staff?
It starts with asking one critical question: Can we do things better? In other words, are the current processes we use streamlined and efficient or are they running into problems that affect business functions and profitability? Are our competitors using technologies that help them produce more goods, deliver better service, improve delivery times, respond faster to customers, take better care of their employees?
These are important questions that a business must examine regularly. Without this “self-examination”, organizations can quickly sink into stasis, which inevitably leads to obsolescence. Companies will miss promising opportunities, not be able to react fast to market changes, see market share eaten away by competitors who do run more efficient operations, and spend too much time trying to run the business instead of growing it.
The many changes that we encounter so often in our apps, programs, and applications are reminders that technology does not stand still. If an organization does not change along with the technology, it will be left using programs 5, 10, 15, or more years old, with features that don’t match with the current competitive landscape.
For instance, many older programs are not mobile-friendly or cloud-friendly. You don’t want to be tied to a desktop interface or client-server program, while the competition speeds ahead with smartphones and SaaS solutions that allow them to be more agile and responsive.
Of course, there is “institutional inertia” to overcome – that is, resistance to change. It is often easier just to keep doing things the same way, with an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mentality. But the reality is that the underlying business environment will move on with updated technology regardless, and “it” – the processes and procedures in use – will be “broke”, in the sense of inefficient, time-consuming, and lagging functionality.
Agile, Responsive, Modern Solutions
In our development here at Crow Canyon, we incorporate the latest features from Microsoft, such as the Modern UI and Chatbots, to help you transform your business from lagging behind to leading edge. Our SharePoint & Office 365 applications and our NITRO Studio application creation platform are designed from the start to help you get onboard with the current technologies. We see ourselves as a resource that can drive “digital transformation” and positive change at your organization.
The conclusion is that rather than resist change, embrace it. While it can be frustrating and overwhelming at times to see technology change so rapidly, the reality is that these changes can bring more efficiency and better financial results. It is a matter of aligning with the technological changes and adapting your business or organization accordingly.
After all, if our predecessors had not “embraced change”, we would still be using dial-up modems, floppy disks, and pagers!