Cloud computing has changed the world—the way people live, work and play. And changes continue. The brightest minds in technology are now working on the next disruptions the cloud will bring and these are being decided these days based mainly on what the millennials expect.
Evan Goldberg, co-founder and chief technology officer of Oracle NetSuite Global Business Unit (Oracle+NetSuite), said it was indeed the expectations of the millennials living and working in a global environment that were driving today’s technological advancements.
Gone are the times when the tech minds dictated what products and services the market would need even before they realized they needed them.
Today, millennials know what they need and what they expect from the products and services they are availing themselves of, whether for work or play.
And with their expectations very clear, it is up to the tech minds to meet them.
“Their expectations are different from those of my generation. They expect any application to be fast and very easy to use, that they will be able to use it with their smartphones, tablets and other gadgets. They expect the application to fit with all the other applications they are using because work for them is an extension of their lives,” Goldberg said in a briefing in Las Vegas with Filipino journalists during the week of SuiteWorld 2017, an annual gathering of Oracle+NetSuite stakeholders.
The line that separates one’s personal space and professional time has faded, he said, as millennials expect to be able to do their work with their own devices using their own technology anytime, anywhere.
As such, they also want to have easy access to their data back in the office or their colleagues elsewhere and to be always connected.
“This can be potentially a bad thing for employees as it makes it harder for them to have a good work-life balance but it is a plus when you consider that you spend a big part of your waking hours working in an environment that is open, productive and enjoyable,” Goldberg said. “For companies, it can be good as business moves faster.”
Business is moving fast to adapt and keep up with the market trend and so are the solutions providers and applications developers.
Oracle+NetSuite, the industry’s leading provider of cloud-based business solutions, does its homework by going out and touching base with the users to find out what they really need and to ensure that whatever product it comes up with will be actually used.
“We follow design thinking. We do tons of interviewing and interacting with the users before we design and produce something. That’s what can lead you to develop simpler solutions. We have to figure out what things the users have to see and deal with and what they don’t have to see. What they don’t need to see should be hidden to make things simpler and make them use the product,” Goldberg said.
The challenge to business software developers is to get people to actually use the products by ensuring they meet the users’ needs and that they are easy to use.
“We have to take the consumer mentality in developing consumer applications. They need to do their job but they want to do it fast and easy. They want to do their job at their own pace and working hours. We have to take note that they want to use these products with FB, Firechat and other applications. These are the feedbacks that we are getting,” he said.
And it does not stop there. “When the product is out, we do lots of aerating and testing,” he added.
Goldberg said that was how recent business solutions and applications were being designed now. An example, he said, was SuitePeople, a new Oracle+NetSuite offering which was launched at SuiteWorld 2017.
SuitePeople is a core human resources offering embedded in Oracle+NetSuite’s unified suite of business solutions.
As it is accessible to all employees from the shops to the top floor, and outside, SuitePeople keeps people empowered and motivated. It enables employees to request time off, access employee directories and organizational charts, monitor vacation schedules and get publicly recognized for good work .
This offering makes it easy for companies to manage, train and retain their people more efficiently.
“Systems are the backbone of your business but the heartbeat is your people,” said Joseph Fund, VP for product development at NetSuite, in a statement. “With SuitePeople, businesses can achieve a more engaged workforce, improved operational efficiency and timely strategic decision making.”
For developers of SuitePeople, they know they ended up with a powerful system but to the user, it’s its simplicity and approachability that made them use it.