How To Handle Automated Software Headaches
January 24th, 2014 by
To set the ‘scene,’ you’ve either recently purchased or are about to purchase a piece of software that is meant to offer improvements for your business. Whether it’s some form of automated process, or software that adds another form of datum for you to analyze and use for future success (such as SEO analytics information), there’s a great deal of caution that you should take with these programs.
What Happens With Software
In short, I don’t mean that some of these programs aren’t worth their money or that they won’t do what you require of them. But you should expect a moderate amount of troubleshooting when applying this software into your business process.
Most of the software that is developed and published for sale and use work as they should to a certain degree, but only under the right circumstances. Software testers can only do so much. The only real test comes from real-world use by people who aren’t familiar with the inner workings of the software.
At the same time, patches and other forms of software updates are constantly in development (or at least, a good development team should always seek to make improvements) and can make drastic changes to a program that you are just getting used to, usually based on customer feedback that you might not be aware of, or agree with.
How To Deal
In order to avoid, or at least brace yourself for these moments of frustration, the first step is to read the manual. It’s usually large, bulky, and annoying, but within it are the instructions that you need to run the program correctly and avoid some of the smaller problems.
The next thing to do is to make sure you always have a way to contact the original developers of the program, so that you can speak with an expert when there’s an issue that you can’t overcome on your own. Phone is always preferable in order to have instant contact, however most developers rely on e-mail.
Finally, in order to prepare for updates and patches, make sure that you read up on the developer blogs that tend to be published on the website for the program itself. Not only is it a way for them to keep their website active, but they generally tend to suggest ways to use their program, bugs or issues to avoid, as well as patches and fixes that are currently under development. Keeping up with these blog updates, will keep you informed of future changes for the software.
Enough preparation allows you to be more familiar with the good and the bad of any automated software you’re using. You can then expect some of the unexpected, and you’ll know the steps you will need to take in order to make the proper fix and continue using software to suit your business needs.
If you’re interested in how a development team can improve your search rankings and help with your software issues, check out this blog on SEO Tips by one of our Software Developers, Shane Kretzmann!