It was a fine Monday morning when I entered my office. It seemed no different than any other normal morning and everyone was busy planning their week’s schedule. But as the day progressed, a few mumbling voices expressing discomfort reached my ears. These were quite similar to the voices in a school just before the announcement of a test result.
I thought to myself “Am I missing something?”
I stepped outside my office and asked my team “Guys is there a problem I should be aware of? Coz if there is a problem, then I really need to know before the new software demo begins.”
“Software Frustritus!” became an instant reaction.
The reply left me wondering, but being a CPO, I had to play the doctor. To do so I also needed to know what this weird phrase meant and trust me, it was the first time I really questioned my vocabulary, which by the way is pretty good. So, the only option I was left with was to say, “Okay guys I will surely address your problems but just let us get done with the demo and I will get back to you on this tomorrow.”
What is Software Frustritus?
I spent the following day surfing through the web, jumping from one tab to another until I finally found the meaning of the term ‘Software Frustritus’ which by the way read as:
“The feeling of being upset or annoyed at the inability to change or achieve something within a computer program or app.”
After spending an hour or so, I came to the conclusion that no matter how weird it sounds, it is a real and serious problem that is plaguing organizations all around the globe. Even though I had been providing IT enterprise solutions for over 25 years, I realized that fighting to learn new software can be very frustrating, and sometimes it affects new hires the most.
Another thought that was constantly doing rounds and exhausting my brain cells was that if I hadn’t noticed this today, then maybe I would have never figured it out myself. And the interesting part is that we being an enterprise solutions company have been plagued by this so-called ‘Software Frustritus’. Just think about the billions of people who will be consuming all these new technologies. Undoubtedly, for many ‘I am quitting this job’ might be the only option they are left with ultimately.
So, how can someone know if their employees are suffering from ‘Software Frustritus’?
Software Frustritus-A Deeper Study:
Nowadays, a corporate desktop has become a more crowded place than a supermarket with the major difference being that humans at a supermarket are capable of organizing themselves. Every desktop owner nowadays is already too frustrated with the application litter on his/her corporate work machine. The moment they switch on their system, all they see is a mess of application icons, websites, and so much complexity that a normal person just can’t keep up and cope, period. And here’s something interesting to note, technology was meant to make our lives easier, but it seems like it is only adding to the mess that’s already there.
The major issue here is that everyone is so lost in the urgency to deliver that they often overlook the challenges on the consumption side of what we deliver. We have been so used to optimizing the speed of delivery, we’ve turned a blind eye to the elegance or efficiency or the ease of consuming the technology.
Even the numbers tell the same story.
On average, a large enterprise has 464 custom apps which makes it a complex ecosystem to deal with for any typical business user. They don’t usually use all these apps, however, the number is shockingly high. The stats further suggest that 68 SaaS applications are in use at a typical enterprise which is not normal for a human mind to deal with. Here’s an example of complex software (which falls in the category of enterprise ‘solution’) ecosystem:
One of the leading global CRM providers has over 50,000 apps available in their marketplace. This means that there’s a key pillar app (the CRM) that functions as the system of record. Now to make the CRM’s capabilities more fluid or more consumable or better integrated with other parts of the business systems, vendors have made 50,000 additional apps that are supposed to be used alongside the CRM, and this creates an enormous amount of complexity for the users.
And what do you get in turn?
Consuming new tech isn’t limited to existing employees it delays the onboarding process for new employees as well, raising the technical bar for people from non-tech backgrounds.
And this has to stop.
Symptoms of Software Frustritus:
By now I knew enough about what ‘Software Frustritus’ really means. I then tried to figure out a few symptoms that had been common amongst all my team members. I realized, most of them had low engagement levels and higher stress levels, whenever we had a new feature demo coming.
I could feel the frustration of my team for the first time and I wanted to explore the psychology behind this ailment a bit deeper. I determined that I needed a doctor before my team members began thrashing their keyboards and monitor screens or one day finally quit when it becomes too much to handle. However, it ended well with me becoming the doctor and coming up with ‘Krista’ -tech that embraced people.
The solution to your Software Frustritus:
If you look at the problem deeply, you’ll understand that the solution is pretty simple:
‘To optimize on the consumption of technology, not just the production of technology.’
And to do so, we leveraged the most basic tool that every human uses to kickstart a task… ‘conversation’.
Wouldn’t it be great if consumption of all the complex automation technologies was replaced by simple conversations, orienting our presentation of IT to users in a way that they want to converse with it?
Conversation is a domain that everyone specializes in. It is unheard of that you would need to take a professional training & development session to read and understand a text that is relevant to your area of specialization. This is where we saw an opportunity to treat Software Frustritus.
Software Frustritus is a real thing and you might be wrong if you think that the IT user is lazy or stupid whenever you see the frustration in their face. Technology needs to be blamed here. Complexity to understand new things may often be a reason for people’s resistance to adapt to new techs. We need to make IT a conversation, not a series of icons, websites, buttons, and menu bars.
Stop blaming people for being people and embrace people while delivering them with a solution that understands how they think, and you will solve software Frustritus by optimizing your business outcomes.
It may sound quite fascinating but we have made it a reality with our conversational RPA ‘Krista’!
Treating your Software Frustritus the Krista way!
As I stated previously, it has been 25 years since I began delivering enterprise IT systems, but for the first time, I really wanted to make tech that understands people. Yes, a different approach was needed.
Krista is that different approach!
I realized how the conversation has been a ‘behind the scenes’ yet a very crucial part of every business process. So, why not leverage this?
Another software! Don’t worry, Krista can understand and respond to your conversations better than your spouse even will.
What Krista actually does is it automates conversations themselves, eliminating the unnecessary hassle of learning every piece of tech out there in the marketplace. The technology is ‘Conversational RPA’ which is a blend of other things such as Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing, and Machine Learning that helps it to operate in a more human-friendly way. In the backend, the other techs are doing their job, however, we don’t burden the user with any of this and present our users with a simple Krista conversation. Nothing more to learn beyond what they already know.
Users stay focused on what they are good at, which is their business, everything else is a Krista conversation!