Understanding the role of a developer to improve your business and bottom line
Preparing for 2022 – Why Every OEM & Dealer Network Needs a Developer
If you don’t have a “developer” on staff, or if you’re not planning on having one in your future, hopefully what you read here gets you forward thinking in this area of your business.
Why this article on having a developer on staff? Let’s start with a quick definition of what a developer is. According to Wikipedia, the following is a definition of both “developer and “programmer” to help differentiate between the two:
• Developer: A computer programmer, sometimes called a software developer, a programmer or more recently a coder (especially in more informal contexts), is a person who creates computer software. The term computer programmer can refer to a specialist in one area of computers, or to a generalist who writes code for many kinds of software.
Now that the definition is translated literally, figuratively today it means someone that can visualize a business problem in a different way and fix things quickly, without an expensive support staff, or buying expensive software.
They intuitively see the pieces of the puzzle and know how to locate the solution. There are open source code libraries and quick, inexpensive solutions, or “plug ins” to just about any business, software or process problem today.
The Importance of a Platform
Most OEM’s and dealers, and their respective dealer network “networks” and legacy business systems are incredibly inefficient when it comes to creating, accessing and managing data. They are slow, cumbersome and more often than not have several different pieces of software and hardware bolted together that require a lot of cost and time to maintain.
These systems are usually years behind of what’s possible today, and in the end, cost much more than currently available options used by the leading brands and companies in the world today. From Amazon Web Services, Microsoft’s Azure cloud, and many other hosted solutions, companies like Airbnb, Uber and many others are able to configure any solution quickly and easily. The possibilities to have a better business system, or “platform” that are safer, faster and more reliable should be considered by EVERY company today as a forward leaning alternative when managing distributed workforces.
Developers Love Platforms
With the freedom to think and create solutions, the fixes to pressing everyday problems can be solved in hours, sometimes minutes. Developers see the pieces, the connections and system problems or limitations, and know what needs to get done.
When you or anyone has an idea to make things quicker, more efficient, or see data differently, they engage in the process and improve the outcome every time. They respond with things like “that won’t work, here’s why (and list the long, tedious, technical reasons why)”. And given a whiteboard and colored markers, the circles, arrows, boxes and bullet point items come at you fast and furious.
And you emerge with a new, clear business solution. And you fix it fast!
Megatrends & Software Development
Not visible to many, and certainly not at the top of the OEM or dealer network priority list is a trend toward new, fast, scalable, customized “platforms”. These platforms allow you to store, retrieve and generally manage data for your employees and customers more efficiently, and in a much safer, secure environment.
These platforms can give you the same, better experience than most solutions you are currently using, including CRM systems like Salesforce. And a trend is also at work to hire developers full time, or on a part time basis to help architect the business systems of the future.
Developers are able to adopt services and tools very quickly and inexpensively. For example, Stripe, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Twilio and Zapier apps, or anything else that is allowing them to innovate faster and drive the business forward.
Developers as Thought Leaders
The bigger message around developers is that they should be thought of as leaders inside of companies. They actually know a lot about what companies need to do to innovate and to win in this world and businesses should consult with them.
Having a vision for developers within your company can have a profound impact on your business, and give you a competitive advantage for years to come. We’ve learned many things this past year, and we know managing information needs to be at the top of our priority list. Adopting this strategy should start today.
There are many platforms that have developers that do contract work, or can be hired full time.Websites like Upwork, Toptal or iq.amazon are great places to start. It’s best to have an idea andrequirements document that defines the problem, then reach out and see where a conversation takes you.
About EquipmentFX Services
Over the years, the services we offer have evolved to meet each clients unique needs. We like to lead with our proprietary A3 assessment to really understand the gaps and opportunities. From there we can discuss follow on services we customize together.
The number one question we get after assessments are “Can you just do this stuff for us”, followed by “we have marketing people, how can we make them and our processes more efficient”. And sometimes we simply deliver the road map and provide support as-needed.
At the end of any engagement, you will have a formal framework and internal audit process to improve your program or build a program from scratch to create more new customers, and to sell more to existing ones.
To find out more about the EquipmentFX A3 assessment, digital marketing or technology consulting services, please contact us.