by Paula Byers |
So, I have been accused of being a girl geek (I hope it was a compliment), but is it true?
Some of my friends say if it has an Apple logo on it then it is an automatic purchase for me. But that’s just not true . . . ok maybe a little, we do run a Mac network after all! I know Apple can be a bit of a Marmite brand, love ‘em or hate ‘em – they have certainly made their mark over the years.
But what makes me passionate about tech? Well for me it is about three things . . .
Ok, I am a sucker for good design. Maybe it’s my own past life as a designer of the ultimate frock, the bridal gown – but what I am using has to feel ‘right’. These days there is no excuse in my book for clunky design, from software (yes you know who you are, oh green one!), to wearable tech – why hasn’t Google Glass taken off? Maybe that particular response to our quest for smaller, more integrated computing power was just too ‘in your face’ to be comfortable for Google Glass to be widely adopted – time will tell.
Appreciating that good design is more than just how it looks, it’s the feel of it, how you interact with something can change drastically based on the design; how user-friendly it is and how quickly you get to feel comfortable with it and like you never used (or want to use) anything else.
If it is not functional, then it doesn’t even get on my list. Usually, I go searching for something to fulfil a need; a new Mac, or software for a specific purpose for my business – pretty much a requirement these days in an increasingly technological world.
Sometimes it is things that we have been crying out for and wishing that someone would get on with producing – like the Apple Pencil. How many styli did I give up on; even the ones promising to be the thinnest, easiest on the market – all turning out to be a waste of money as none truly replicated the writing in a notebook feeling on my iPad. Why oh, why couldn’t they make something that wrote just like my mechanical pencil? Then the Apple Pencil came along and, oh the joy! Finally, I could throw away my paper notebook and just carry my iPad and trusty Apple Pencil so I can scribble away in my meetings in real time!
And sometimes devices come along that we didn’t know we needed like the Apple Watch – not a purchase I made myself (because I didn’t think I needed one), but a present. But oh, how useful it has become since I had it, from making me move more regularly and reminding me to take a minute out to breathe when sometimes I get a little too engrossed in my work. All-important when you are working – recharging the batteries is essential. And that doesn’t even begin to cover the other uses I have found for it to make my life just that little bit easier.
Ok, so this one is a little harder to pin down. But for me, if it doesn’t inspire even a little, then it doesn’t make you want to use it. And if you don’t want to use it, then you will never fully engage and embrace whatever it is you are looking to do/use. Looking at the bigger picture, seeing where things can go, imagining the possibilities, having your mind blown by the new tech/gadget or whatever is important. It’s never just about the form and function, there has to be a little inspiration in there too . . . just that little bit of magic!
So how does this passion relate to my work as a cloud integrator? Well, I believe that all three things above should apply to your business software (note I have not said accounting software!). Yes, the accounting software is the base, the foundation – get that wrong and the rest is just a house of cards waiting to come tumbling down. But for me the functionality of a complete business system that carries out all your business functions, in an integrated way so that you can truly operate on a single point data entry basis (enter once so that the system uses it many times without re-keying the same data) so reducing time, duplication and error, is vital to any business looking to grow in this day and age.
The perfect trifecta?
Xero has that ability. It has all three of the above; form, function and inspiration in spades (probably why it is so successful and the leading accounting software in the UK). It’s not called beautiful software for nothing. For some businesses, utilising this software to its fullest potential may be enough to start with.
However, where the real magic happens is when you combine it with Apps from the Ecosystem that cover your business functions. Get them right and suddenly . . . boom! You are a small business competing on a much more level playing field with the big guys who spend thousands on software each year. Often it is modular, so you can add bits as you grow and increase subscription levels once you reach your growth milestones. The ability to imagine where it can take you is all important. Without the ability to embrace that vision progress will never be made but, with it, well the sky is your oyster . . . or something like that!
So, if being a girl geek means I get the best out of tech, whether it be software or hardware, well then, I am guilty as charged. But maybe that’s what makes it work. If you would like to experience the magic of cloud integration, then talk to us here at LimeCloud to see how we can help sprinkle a little of that magic your way.