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How a web application can benefit your business.

Thu, 19 Sept.

We use software every day that's designed to make our lives easier; to communicate, to keep track, to socialize. But sometimes it can be difficult to make an existing software product work for your company's needs. Moreover, there might not be any software that does what you're looking for. If this describes your situation, then you're probably thinking: "Is it worth it to hire someone to improve this?" Today, I'd like to help you explore the value of developing your own web application with a simple and fun 5 minute exercise.

Step One. Identify your business’ weak points.

It can be easy to lose sight of the big picture of your business systems, especially as your business get’s larger, but it’s so vitally important. Step back and take a bird’s eye view of your business systems, then identify problems that you see.

  • Where are the frustration points for you, for your employees, and for your clients/customers?
  • What areas consistently take more time/effort than desired?
  • What areas are the most costly?

Step Two. Imagine your ideal solution.

Once you’ve identified your business’s weak areas, stay at that bird’s eye level, and try to envision your ideal solution(s).

What’s most important here is to dream really big. Often when we’re looking at a problem (for example: commuter traffic), we consider only the most accessible solution (avoiding traffic that time of day). Dreaming big, and talking about ‘ideals’ allows us to see more solutions to the problem (like redesigning the traffic flow, or moving closer to the office, or eliminating the office altogether). Imagine all of the ways that technology could help you. I find it helps to picture how technology will work in 20, or 30 years, and imagine how that technology could solve your problems today.

**Note. Yes, it’s your job to find a solution that will work for you, but I’d love to help! Send me an email about your company, and I’ll try to give you some ideas.

Step Three. Do the math.

At this point, you’ve identified a weakness, and you have some solutions in mind to fix it. Now, try to determine exactly how much time/energy/money each solution would save you over the next year.

  • If it’d save 30 minutes a day for each of your 5 staff, then it’s worth $10,000.
  • If it’d reduce your staff workload from 5 down to 4, then it’s worth $50,000.
  • If it’d improve your sales rate by 25%, it could improve your growth rate by ?%.
  • If it’d improve your customer lifetime value by %10, it could improve your gross income by ?%.

The resulting value should be your benchmark. If the cost of a solution is less than it’s benefit value, then it’s a cost-effective solution, and it’s worth pursuing.

So take some time today to consider your business’ weak points, think about your ideal system, and then do the math to see how valuable it’d be to implement a solution.

Aaron Mader
Owner / Lead Developer
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