The world(and crm) needs a better spreadsheet and form builder

Menu The world needs a better spreadsheet 12 January 2017 on formbuilder, businessautomation, salesforce, crm, spreadsheet, excel, google sheets, form-builder

I’m Matt Monihan, and am what you might call a consultant. H data recovery software I act as an interim CTO for non-tech companies, and develop applications when necessary, usually with Ruby on Rails. 1 care data recovery software My company is called Voyager Scientific.


I typically deal with customers who want to digitize a paper process, and the most common use case is time-tracking. Database user interface Things like, tracking hours of therapy delivered, the labor and materials on a construction site, etc.

Despite the cost of hardware falling, the speed of computation increasing, tools increasing in sophistication…for the businesses I work with, developing software is still prohibitively expensive.

This talk is meant to discuss some of the reasons this is the case, and provide some strategies to make software more affordable for those that need it most.

He said, “I’m working with a developer to create an electronic record of student information for our school. Data recovery jaipur The guy I’ve hired to develop it won’t return my calls. Database platforms I’ve paid him $10,000 so far, and he’s invoiced me for another $15,000. Data recovery group I can’t use what he’s delivered so far, and every time I question his work I get excuses. Database xls I feel like I’m being jerked around.”

And, so I did, and it wasn’t great. C database library But, it wasn’t that complex. 510 k database I said, “I think I can build what you want in a weekend. How to become a database administrator I’ll tell you what, I’ll do it for $3,000 and you can cut your losses with this guy.”

And so I did. Database xml The application needed to store a student’s personal information, their parents’, and some health insurance records. Database terminology I hadn’t built a rails application in years, but, despite that, I brushed the cobwebs off and got to work. Database theory It took about 4 hours to build, and 8 hours to deploy to rackspace. Database 1 to 1 relationship Long story short, I couldn’t use heroku. Database testing I still can’t believe it took that long to deploy.

The staff started using the system immediately. Database graph We fixed some minor bugs. Database naming conventions In that state, it remained bug free for some months after it was deployed. Database entity It was just a simple CRUD system on a couple objects.

I tell you this story because it’s common. Database developer And I expect that, to many of you, it’s probably unremarkable. Data recovery plan If you’ve done freelance work, at some point or another you’ve probably been the savior, but you’ve probably also been the one with excuses. Data recovery kansas city I’d like to tell you I’ve been the savior 100% of my career, but unfortunately, that hasn’t always been the case.

But, over the years I’ve developed a sense about the likelihood of a project being successful. N k database Meaning, fulfilling the task it was meant to do, and being delivered on-time and under budget. Data recovery 2016 Here are some of the things I’ve noticed.

The first is that we’ve reached an age where millennials are ascending to positions of authority within their organizations. 510 k database fda Frankly, we’re getting older. Database programmer And I say, “millennial“ to describe their expectations of what an acceptable user experience is. Data recovery osx These people have long, positive relationships with consumer software, and are waking up to the reality that the UX of their workplace IT is let’s say, less than stellar.

When you’ve grown up with the responsiveness and ease of use of say, Facebook, Google, or Amazon, you come to expect it in all interfaces. Database integrity The best example of this is the UX of working with an exceptionally long list. Database backup Let’s say a friend list with hundreds and sometimes, thousands of entries. Hollywood u database In your application, do you use typeahead in the UI? Does the SQL query take a few seconds to return? When your budget is $3,000, how much have you allotted to mitigating this problem? Likely nothing, right?

Well first, what kind of enterprises am I talking about? For the purpose of this discussion, I’m defining enterprise software as software that is meant to serve a business purpose. Data recovery ipad The businesses I’m working with are typically 10 or more years old, and are funded with retained earnings, credit, or debt, not venture capital. Database vs server 100%+ year over year growth over ten years is not the game these companies are playing. Database is in transition Though, they are interested in remaining competitive.

Furthermore, let’s assume this is for enterprises with less than 200 employees. Data recovery ios Well beneath the Small Business Association’s threshold of 500. Database data types 200 employees at the median wage of $50k in the united states is $10 million per year.

It stands to reason that if you can afford to spend $10 million per year on people, spending $100k per year (just 1% of your HR budget) on technology to make them more productive is a no-brainer.

SoftwareAdvice.com polled thousands of organizations on their usage of CRM software(things like salesforce) and discovered that 72% use either paper or spreadsheets. Data recovery johannesburg An additional 5% used nothing at all. Iphone 5 data recovery software That’s compared to 20% who actually used CRM software. Database operations The rest used something else entirely.

I mentioned earlier that many of the use cases I work with are time-sheets. Database index I.e. Database crud someone fills out a form each day, and that form is stored in a database. Drupal 8 database When building this, I need to keep a couple things in mind.

• The resolution of an A4 piece of paper is a crisp 3508px x 2480px. Data recovery disk For comparison, my MacBook Air is about a third of that at 1440px x 900px.

“A condition or capability that must be met or possessed by a system or system component to satisfy a contract, standard, specification, or other formally imposed document.”

The uncanny valley is a hypothesis in the field of human aesthetics which holds that when human features look and move almost, but not exactly, like natural human beings, it causes a response of revulsion among some human observers.

It’s a curve that as you build something that’s closer and closer to the real thing, just before you get to the real thing in human likeness, familiarity drops off a cliff into a valley. Database 3 tier architecture This is why corpses or zombies are scary.

In UX, there’s an uncanny valley as well. Data recovery orlando At one end is your sketch based on a conversation, and on the other end is the platonic ideal of the completed application. Database cardinality But right at the bottom, here, is where your users finally internalize and start to intuitively understand how your application is going to impact their lives. Database unit testing This is also where you get the greatest quantity and highest quality feedback.

• “I just remembered Jeff from accounting is going to need to sign off on this form, so he’ll need to have an email sent to him. I data recovery software free download And accounts payable, oh they need this and that…”

But, this is often too late. O review database You’ll start getting feedback that call into question design decisions you’ve made much earlier in the process. Database in recovery Perhaps even call into question whether you should have built anything in the first place.

The obvious solution is to call scope creep. Data recovery wizard professional You snooze, you lose, this wasn’t in the contract, or the sprint, backlog, or however you’ve laid out the project. Data recovery open source So, we’ll fix it if we have more budget. Gif database This is the usually the most sane way to deal with this in the short term.

Another suggestion might be to be more rigorous in the progression of deliverables, spend more time, ask more questions, invest in better documentation. Data recovery lifehacker This, of course, means more budget. Top 10 data recovery software 2014 And, if you’re at the end of a project life cycle, it’s too late.

I think, broadly, the solution is to build prototypes that become the foundation of an application, without compromising our ability to extend and customize an application.

What this means for me is that every application I build starts with a form builder and a spreadsheet. Database gale It has user authentication by default, and granular permissions for every object in the system(Read only, write mine, write all, etc). Database life cycle When an event takes place that requires a notification, there’s a UI to set that up.

So, what does this mean in practice? I should be able to design the schema of my application with a form-building UI, and produce a documentation that is both machine and human readable. Data recovery dallas That documentation should act as a single source of truth for the design of the UI, the business logic, and the database.

Salesforce is the biggest name in this game. Data recovery usb It was born a CRM, but their platform can be used to build anything. Database 4th normal form You can build a sophisticated system as an administrator, but can pull in a developer when you need to do something more complex.

And that’s what this talk is really about, what is it our job to do? Is it to build applications, or to solve problems with technology? There’s a new category of job that’s emerging, and it’s one that straddles both the realms of user experience, and custom development.

When someone tries to hire me, the first thing I do is try to talk them out of it. V database in oracle Is the problem you say you have really a problem? Is it a problem that is best solved by technology?

If they make it past that conversation, I open up a google sheet and a google form builder, and try to create an MVP of the app right in front of them. Data recovery tampa And sometimes, that right there is enough.

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