Understanding Customer Needs Leads to Better Software
In my eyes, there are three main reasons for software updates. The first is to fix the code, more commonly known as bug fix. This is to rectify defects. The second reason is to add new functionality and improvements to data entry and reporting. And finally, the software needs to stay current with the latest operating systems. For example, when Windows releases a new version, we make changes on our end to keep things running as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
Sometimes when we talk about software updates, people get nervous and are concerned about their data. But I’m here to tell you, software updates aren’t like the old days where you might be missing files or things are mysteriously placed in different locations.
For many software applications, an upgrade involves setting up a costly and time consuming project. This usually entails having to migrate the data from the old version to the new version, re-applying and sometimes reprogramming all the customizations you had in the old version into the new one. This also means that the new version needs testing from start to finish before you can begin using it in a live environment.
At Cultura, we approach software upgrades differently. We run regular updates — every six weeks — so any changes are incremental, making data easier to access, easier to enter, easier to update, easier to report on and easier to compile. All the customizations are automatically included, so there is no need to migrate data.
Basically, we take away the stress and disruption of performing upgrades to your software.
Think of software updates as vehicle maintenance. You know that every 5,000 miles you need to take your vehicle in to be serviced. While it’s there, the service technicians will change the oil, rotate the tires, check your filters and replace fluids. Updating your software with regularity increases its longevity and allows it to be fully functional, giving it the ability to do exactly what it was designed to do.
Just as you clean out your vehicle and remove any valuables before handing over the keys, you should protect your valuables and backup your computer to an external hard drive or server weekly, if not daily.
A hallmark of a good software company is that they not only keep the software up to date, but they also make it very clear what is being changed and updated. But how do we determine what to change and update? We continually work with customers to get their feedback and better understand their software needs and how they use the software.
Just as your business grows and the industry in general evolves in terms of standard practices and what is required, so does our software. Think of us more as a long-term partner committed to your success. It’s our job to keep up with the evolutions and revolutions, and in turn provide you the tools to do the same.