How good/bad software can affect employee happiness

David Wippel

David Wippel


software development

Nowadays, every company is a software company if you ask us.

Because ultimately, sooner or later, we will all operate using different technology tools & systems. But did you ever think about the fact that what software your team uses affects just how happy they are in their day-to-day work?

We've been implementing custom software for our clients for over a decade now. And have found that implementing the right, user-friendly software doesn't just improve processes, workflows, and efficiency rates, but if done right, employees are much happier working with it too. And we have the metrics to prove it.

These are the steps we take and the metrics we use to ensure our custom software contributes to employee happiness rather than causes more friction.

Talk to your employees about their frustrations, needs, and wants — before you ever write a line of code

The mistake we see a lot of companies making when it comes to developing software is that top management decides to implement software without talking to the employees who are going to be using it before.

This mistake ultimately causes the software to fail because: on the one hand, it probably doesn't meet your employees' expectations, and on the other hand, they weren't involved in the development process, so they feel blindsided and are less likely to accept the new technology.

If they're involved in the process, and their needs are met, they're going to be a lot happier using the software at work every day.

This is why we go through a discovery phase at the beginning of every custom software project during this; we call up our client's employees and get to the bottom of what is currently working and what's not — just like we did recently with our client the BFI Burgenland.

On top of integrating employees' frustrations, needs, and wants into the design and development process of custom software — there are few metrics you can measure to ensure you're on the right track. That way, you can always course-correct throughout the development process, find bottlenecks and fix problems quickly.

Employee satisfaction metrics in custom software

These are the metrics we set and measure in our custom software:

Time to complete

The time to complete is the time it takes for an employee to complete a specific task. It's a great metric because it measures how efficient the custom software makes the process. If the employee can now do their job quicker, they'll also be happier, especially if it's a repetitive, mundane task.

Success rate

The success rate is another metric that determines whether the software is doing a good job or not/ assisting employees to get their work done. This refers to when employees try to do a specific task and how many of those trying succeed in completing it from start to finish. It's a straightforward way to indicate whether the software is doing its job and the user experience is clear enough.

Satisfaction rate

This metric measures satisfaction after the employee carries out the task through software — usually a simple pop-up that asks the employee how happy they are with the overall experience. It's a quick and easy indicator to let us know whether our software is still working as it should be — or if we need to tweak certain features.

When and where to use metrics in custom software

When it comes to measuring these metrics, it doesn't make sense to implement them everywhere. Implementing them for every single task would take too many resources to analyze the results. Plus if you don't have enough data the results are not really reliable. We recommend using these metrics in software that revolves around the companies core processes. It also makes sense when the software is used frequently and regularly by employees.

Want to find out more about how developing custom software could impact your employee happiness and retention? Book a call with our CEO Christian.

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