Overcoming the Challenges of Integrating Configurator Software
Integrating and configuring complex systems can be extremely challenging. Each company has its own goals and complex relationships with data, external systems, and the world.
Many enterprises, including executive summary companies, build configurable, customizable, and multioption products. They often find that a configurator can provide many benefits that contribute to a competitive edge by automating quotation documentation, streamlining workforce efficiency, reducing errors, and improving customer satisfaction.
However, introducing a configurator into an organization requires a considerable investment of time and resources, and there are several complications that come with adopting a new system. Let’s examine some of the common problems and suggest some tips for overcoming them.
Problem: Capturing configuration rules is time-consuming.
Solution: Build a rule database that contains rules that meet your company’s current and future requirements. There is no standard definition for configuration software design. Driven by customer demand, software-manufacturing companies are offering more custom or configurable products. Capturing knowledge to define configuration rules is time-consuming, but the rule database is an asset that can be drawn upon in multiple projects and, over time, offer considerable time savings.
Problem: Competing with low-cost rivals is tough for North American and European manufacturers.
Solution: Follow lean manufacturing techniques of reducing waste while improving productivity. A direct sales model that employs an online configurator can reduce many costly, traditional personnel positions, just like any other self-serve company, and consumers get exactly the product they want from existing configurations.
Problem: Manufacturers are increasingly prolific in the realm of new product delivery and product retirement. Software is constantly changing, and product quotes quickly become obsolete.
Solution: Configuring software for obsolete versions can be catastrophic, but using notification alerts can save the day and prevent time-consuming mistakes. Notifications can contact multiple individuals simultaneously using voice, text, or email and can be used to let subscribers know when there are updates, licensing issues, or new add-on products available. This functionality helps make communication more effective and can increase sales revenue.
Problem: Many configurator software applications don’t support sophisticated workflow. Complex relationships exist between business partners while prices and rules vary. Companies often rely on legacy systems, and some even use spreadsheets.
Solution: Leveraging configuration software as a standalone, as part of customer relationship management, or in conjunction with a CRM tool can help. A unified workflow management can reduce duplication of effort, prevent errors from being introduced, and save time.
Problem: Complex integrations have an uncomfortably high failure rate. New projects often substantially exceed the original cost estimate and fail to meet deadlines.
Solution: Employing a development strategy that includes robust analysis of business rules delivers measurable outcomes and clearly defined strategies. According to the MIT Sloan Management Review, successful projects are managed to cope with unexpected events. Testers and programmers can work smarter with well-structured solutions.
Configurator software solves many of the problems development companies face when they seek to provide custom solutions for their clients, and it enables them to efficiently deal with integration. The software tends to pay for itself in increased revenue while shortening product durations significantly, and, arguably most importantly, it results in improved client satisfaction.