When it comes to software there is always the next best thing on the market. The solution that offers to solve every one of your business challenges or more commonly these days, a solution that offers to solve a very individual, specific challenge that you know you have and can quantify easily.
Yesterday, I took part in a group exercise on innovation and our session leader quoted one statistic that stuck with me, of 33,000 new products to hit the supermarket shelves in 2013 in the USA, at the end of 12 months only 10% were still there. That’s a 90% failure rate on innovative products.
The problem with innovation is that whilst the right innovation can catapult your business forward, the wrong innovation can create havoc, leaving a hurricane-like trail of destruction in its wake. When it comes to software, particularly software that runs your business critical systems and processes, then the hurricane can be totally devastating.
Modern software is so easy to pick up, you can download an app from the app store, sign up for a quick SaaS solution on your browser. But unfortunately, all these applications aren’t guaranteed to talk back to your core systems. Its difficult to tell if you’ve picked up one of the 10% that will stick around, or the 90% that will go under. What happens if you put all your efforts into a quick neat solution to solve a business problem that looks great, and discover 6 months later it was developed by an 11th grader in his bedroom and it’s a fantastic solution but has no funding or marketing behind it to turn it into a reliable solution with longevity! Reliability and longevity are key components of identifying a truly innovative solution.
Like many software companies, Wynne invests money in software development, looking to create new options that will deliver benefits to our customers and solutions to their business challenges. However: experience has taught us that delivering innovation in a vacuum without close involvement and interaction with our customers is not the answer. As a software company, we need to be responsive to our customer’s needs and willing to work with our customers to deliver innovation that works, innovation that delivers reliable improvement, not one-off solutions that become difficult to maintain, difficult to integrate into the rest of the business and impossible to upgrade.
So at Wynne, we have a program of developing SIGs, Special Interest Groups focused on solving particular business challenges where we work with small groups of customers – potential heavy users of the solution – to make sure that innovation delivers not quick-fix bandaids but long term integrated solutions that fulfill business needs comprehensively. SIGs are about delivering responsive innovation that works: Works for our customers, works for their customers and works for us as a business. Solutions with longevity, solutions that are reliable and solutions that will integrate back into your core systems to ensure you remain in control.
If you want to know more about our process or SIGs, just ask me.
Helen Sowerby, Director of Business Development