Netflix killed Blockbuster. Why? They had the same movies available. Amazon is killing brick and mortar retail before our very eyes. Why? They offer the same products. Uber and Lyft are crushing traditional taxi services? Why? It’s the same deal—a point A to point B ride. I think you know the answer to the question “why?”. These companies turned the consumer experience on its head, leveraged innovation and technology to create a level of operational efficiency their competition literally couldn’t imagine in their wildest dreams, and are accelerating business transformation at a massive pace.
That’s called disruption.
When we look at technology and disruption, ease of use and quality of experience are paramount, and the human element is too often overlooked. For example, people love AIR BNB because it's very easy to rent your living space and make a few bucks, or find a place to rent and save a lot of money over hotels all through a basic smart phone application. AIR BNB did not just materialize out of the ether and appear in the App Store with renters ready and waiting. We all know that not to be true, but no one marvels or appreciates what was a tremendous amount of human energy and visionary decision making that truly created the market disruption.
The next time you engage one of your favorite apps (maybe you are right now), consider that the easier you are able to consume that application and its services, the more ability that application has to add a force multiplier to the human energy you invest in it.
“…while these [automation] tools offer new strengths and capabilities, they are meant to complement and enhance human skills.” - Marshall Wells & Aiha Kralj, Accenture
The organizations we are working with realize that they need to embrace digital transformation, and the reasons they have for taking action are not trivial. Too much critical work is coming in and resources are sparse. The business needs to show Wall Street better management of expense. They are losing critical talent to more forward leading technology organizations. The business issues are real, and the time lines to solve them are tight.
They know that baby-steps won’t cut it, and that a paradigm shift in operations and service delivery are required to gain significant ground on the competition, or to remain the market leader. These issues are not problems, but opportunities. And when our most visionary customers are able to see our software through the lens of opportunity, business transformation can occur.
Though our cloud orchestration software is a critical part of our customers’ digital transformation, its most important role is its ability to support the humans who are collaborating, taking visionary risks, and making big time business decisions.
“[Automation] is better, predictable, faster, typically cheaper, and a much lower error rate as long as our algorithms work.” - Catherine Bessant, COO, CTO Bank of America
Business transformation is a monumental endeavor, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be a daunting task. In fact, the more difficult or awkward, or the less certain the desired outcome is possible, the better likely hood that particular endeavor was a bad idea and that it’s time to go back to the drawing board. And that’s not a bad thing, failing is simply part of success (see: failing fast).
Our customers are visionaries who don’t just see a piece of software to solve an immediate pain. What they see is an opportunity to deliver services better, faster, cheaper. Period. Note that in the last paragraph I qualified that business transformation “is” a monumental task. Our customers find that we’ve made much of that task consumable in an application. So without having to ask the business for more people, we make it possible for customers to increase output and the number of users supported by…pick a multiplier.
It’s a good day when we hear from our customers that they are taking on and successfully completing more work without straining existing resources. That’s what makes the investment of seemingly immeasurable development hours’ worth while.
“While automation has transformed and will continue to transform many industries, it largely redefines rather than eliminates jobs.” - Gene Zaino, MBO Partners
The executives and management will plan out and execute the high level business activities and make the important decisions involved in steering the ship through the choppy seas of transformation, but it’s the team of doers that are critical to successful execution. And the attitude of management will often reflect in the team. For example, I have a customer who reminds everyone on his team in his email signature, “Enjoy your day and be sure to disrupt.” Great leader!
It is the team that embraces disruption that will enthusiastically take on their part of extending our orchestration software the extra 10% of the way. Like I said, the monumental task of business transformation doesn’t have to be daunting. An extra 10% across a small team doesn’t seem like a lot of work, but the output of their work has a major impact.
The human element is crucial to Quali’s cloud sandbox software. We need conscientious and motivated users, and in return for their earnest engagement, we’ll continue to make the product easy to consume. And with their effort, they can continually improve their customers experience. As I discussed in Stop Automating! the results are not as powerful when addressing automation from a mechanical angle, rather than empowering the human element that is so critical.
To say that cloud automation software like Quali is disrupting the market in the same way as Netflix, Amazon and Uber is not an overstatement. What would be an over statement is to say that we have it all figured out, right here right now, and have exactly what you need to transform your business. We’re a big part of that transformation, but the human element, the creativity, intelligence, vision and passion are essential.
“Enjoy your day and be sure to disrupt.”