How to tell if the software you chose is slowing you down

Every week, new platforms emerge to help manage every aspect of the business. There never seems like the right time to hop into something new. However, this week we'll discuss the other side. Understanding where your current software ecosystem is hurting your business. These areas can be hard to detect, especially when you've been running the same systems for years. Technical debt builds up beneath the surface, and before you know it, more agile competitors are producing things at a pace that seems like magic.

One of the easiest ways to tell if a piece of software you chose is slowing you down is to ask the team. If there's a simple majority consensus that something is not working, then it's a clear problem. For instance, it could be difficult to access certain pieces of information within your data ecosystem. Everyone doesn't have to love the platform, but if most people hate it, it usually means that the software itself is creating friction.  Friction is costly in both time and morale.

Usually an extension of friction, this second indicator is also easy to spot. If members of your team are using other members of your team as "software operators", this is a red flag. If the software works with the workflow of the team, then everyone should be able to use the platform. The solution to this isn't completely a software one. If other team members performing the same task can use the software without issue, then it may just be a process and training problem. (hopefully, it's not a personnel problem)

The third method just takes a keen ear. Your IT team likely knows what software is causing the most headaches. Great IT is the foundation of any modern business. Reducing friction in IT support through great platform choices is an investment that will pay for itself through gained efficiency. As a leader, work with your IT team to understand the business ecosystem on a deeper technical level. There are bound to be gems to explore.