Many people have experienced hardship since the start of the pandemic. Tens of thousands have been furloughed or made redundant from their jobs, while the self-employed have found that a lack of business has also taken its toll on their cash flow. As people have less disposable income they begin to re-evaluate their spending on services and subscriptions and then the inevitable cost cutting starts. I know that I, along with friends and colleagues, have looked at and reduced long-standing services that were previously taken for granted and not questioned. Equally, we have started looking at how we can get better use from the things we already own rather than simply buying more. With a little imagination could we adapt our gadgets, tools and appliances to give us more of what we need?
Make your existing software work harder for you
What is happening at an individual level can also apply to organizations and the systems that keep them running. Businesses are taking the opportunity during these straitened times to take stock of the software they already have in place to find out what else it can do. There will be many software systems that have been solidly and dutifully providing the service they were initially procured for – and delivering benefits that remain largely unrecognized by anyone not closely involved with them – but are ripe for closer scrutiny.
For many multi-layered organizations, the original strategic objectives behind their older solutions may have been overlooked, forgotten or changed. The staff involved in implementing them have moved on and the latest projects now take priority. From a budgetary point of view therefore it may be appealing – at least on the surface – to look at terminating the use of some of these systems.
Use new capabilities to deliver new business solutions
But before you potentially throw the baby out with the bath water, why not ask your supplier to show you how these systems address your business problems and find out what benefits they deliver? Newer versions of the software will undoubtedly offer new features and use cases that were not available at the time of purchase. New modules or complementary products might also be available for integration to extend the functionality and benefits of the original solution. From our own experience at Macro 4 we know that long-term users of our software are not always aware of its latest capabilities. Companies who implemented our Columbus software to manage printed output many years ago are sometimes surprised to hear that the same system can now be used to handle personalized customer communications across multiple digital channels, including web, mobile, email, chat and messaging. We also work with customers who originally used Columbus for document archiving, and have extended its use into many different areas, including customer self-service, legacy application decommissioning and blockchain applications, to name a few.
Renew and strengthen trusted relationships
As we all gradually move into a hopefully better time and world, now is the time for businesses and their suppliers to take advantage of this opportunity to renew and strengthen trusted relationships. Suppliers that show customers their worth as a valued business partner can continue to assist them on their digital transformation journey into the future.
Our customers can rest assured that is what Macro 4 fully intends to do. Find out more about how we can help you on your digital transformation journey.