Balance in enterprise software

Finding the sweet spot between simplicity and functionality

Before you try this exercise, make sure you are in a clear, open space. Now stand on one leg. You don’t need to do anything crazy  just pick one foot off the ground a little. Most likely, this isn’t a big challenge for you.

Now close your eyes. If you’re like most people, you’ll find it much harder to keep your balance with your eyes closed. That’s because balancing is an active process that requires getting feedback and adjusting. The same thing is true when developing enterprise software, and it’s a lesson that we always keep in mind as we add capabilities to our Sitrion ONE employee app.
 

Crafting simple control options

The primary balancing act in enterprise software is between simplicity and the real-world challenges of the business. As a general strategy with Sitrion ONE, we start with the simplest possible story and then carefully add complexity as needed to match the company’s requirements. The easiest way to understand this is to look at a few examples.

You may recall from my earlier blog post, “As simple as possible,” that we put a lot of effort into making the process of composing an internal communications message as easy as we can. Sitrion ONE allows communicators to choose what type of message they want to send and with what characteristics, like whether the message will trigger a push notification. However, within enterprises, not every communicator should be allowed to make every decision. So Sitrion ONE has built-in options that allow certain communicators to send messages to only specified groups of users. Still, in some companies, more granular control is needed.

Although we’ve added the ability to control what writers can do, we’ve kept it as simple as possible.

Customize how a message is sent in Sitrion ONE

It's also now possible to choose what types of messages a writer can compose and which options she can enable on those messages, all on one screen. So if you want to limit how often someone can send push notifications to only a handful of communicators, that’s now possible. (Spoiler alert: We’ll talk about the “poll” message type in an upcoming blog post.)

Every company has its complexity. The key for us at Sitrion is to determine what level of complexity is necessary while keeping the user experience as simple as possible. More than a decade of experience building enterprise software really helps us in this balancing act. It’s an active process that we never take for granted  we’re always happy to get feedback and keep making Sitrion ONE better for you.

Oh, and you can put your foot back on the ground now. 🙂

Brian Kellner, Chief Technology Officer

Brian Kellner is responsible for Sitrion's product strategy and development. Brian has held product or development management positions for over a dozen years. Most recently he was Vice President of Enterprise Products for Webroot Software. Brian holds a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.S. in Management from Colorado Tech.

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