Experts in all organisations need to be good at spotting problems, spotting opportunities, and figuring out solutions to the problems and ways to go after the opportunities. They also need to be good at pursuing goals set by others.
What happens if we try to imagine software developed from the start to meet that objective.
The software needs to have a very sophisticated ‘model’ of the expert’s landscape. By sophisticated we don’t mean technically complex, we mean accurate – in the way a model of a building can be accurate.
I don’t know what the most important information someone in an organisation I don’t understand needs when they sit down at their desk in the morning. A school headmistress might be most interested in exam scores, absentee levels, temperature in the building, the mood of the parents, the status of a specific problem, a visit from an inspector, a problem with the building, a staffing issue, I don’t know. What I’m saying is, most of the above factors could be made available digitally if they aren’t already, and someone could build software to deliver it.
So she sits at a computer, the computer says “here’s the information you are most interested in right now”, and “here’s something happening you might want to know about”.
Continuing the idea – every small company has business development and sales staff. What information do they want most at the beginning of the day? E-mail can deliver them reactive stuff (complaints from customers for example) but their job is fundamentally to grow the business not reply to e-mail. Perhaps there could be some relevant news about something happening in their town or their industry, or something a competitor is doing, or an opportunity to meet a key client in a conference. There could be relevant internal news about a manufacturing problem or advance. I don’t know.
But with a detailed insight into this expert’s landscape, it would be possible to build sophisticated software to provide the expert landscape.
Note that we’re not talking about analytics, BI or decision making tools here. This can be part of an expert’s data landscape, yes. But the core part of it might not be particularly sophisticated – go back to the headmistress example – just information about the temperature in the school hall.