Executive Briefings

REAP What You Sow - and Prevent Headaches

Taking the time upfront to work with customers on a thorough requirements analysis will prevent unwelcome surprises later and will give customers the confidence and comfort level they need to move ahead with software implementations. So says Gene Gander, vice president of sales-Americas at CargoWise, a provider of software solutions and services for freight forwarders, NVOCCs, express couriers, customs brokers and other logistics companies.

"With supply chains becoming increasingly complex, existing customers' needs are constantly changing and new customers with specific requirements are being brought on," says Gander. A thoroughly executed Requirements Analysis Process (REAP) can greatly enhance the understanding of a customer's expectations and goals and help define how a software system can meet those expectations, he says. "A good REAP analysis by a qualified business consultant can dramatically reduce risks associated with specific customer issues by defining the exact results that are expected. It also provides the customer more confidence in the total cost of ownership of a solution implementation.

"If customers feel confident that all their needs have been addressed and they are comfortable with the total cost of ownership, then it is easy for them to say, 'yes, let's move forward,' says Gander. "REAP prevents surprises after the fact, which is something no one wants."

An upfront requirements analysis also prevents surprises during implementation, he adds. "There is nothing more frustrating that getting to the final goal line and having someone in operations say, 'what about this one percent of customers we have not provided for?' If you deal with these issues early in the process and before implementation, then buy-in and acceptance by ground-level operations people is a given."

This process also benefits CargoWise "because every time we work with a new customer we learn something new," says Gander. "As we help these companies develop best practices, we accumulate that knowledge and distribute it to other customers and prospects. That is how we increase our value."

To view this video interview in its entirety, Click Here.

"With supply chains becoming increasingly complex, existing customers' needs are constantly changing and new customers with specific requirements are being brought on," says Gander. A thoroughly executed Requirements Analysis Process (REAP) can greatly enhance the understanding of a customer's expectations and goals and help define how a software system can meet those expectations, he says. "A good REAP analysis by a qualified business consultant can dramatically reduce risks associated with specific customer issues by defining the exact results that are expected. It also provides the customer more confidence in the total cost of ownership of a solution implementation.

"If customers feel confident that all their needs have been addressed and they are comfortable with the total cost of ownership, then it is easy for them to say, 'yes, let's move forward,' says Gander. "REAP prevents surprises after the fact, which is something no one wants."

An upfront requirements analysis also prevents surprises during implementation, he adds. "There is nothing more frustrating that getting to the final goal line and having someone in operations say, 'what about this one percent of customers we have not provided for?' If you deal with these issues early in the process and before implementation, then buy-in and acceptance by ground-level operations people is a given."

This process also benefits CargoWise "because every time we work with a new customer we learn something new," says Gander. "As we help these companies develop best practices, we accumulate that knowledge and distribute it to other customers and prospects. That is how we increase our value."

To view this video interview in its entirety, Click Here.