If experts have the right information presented in the right way, it creates enormous business value.
They can make better decisions, keep organisations healthy, and be more productive, and enjoy their work much more.
They can even generate entirely new business models.
Giving experts better data is surely one of the best answers to some of the world’s biggest challenges – (reducing the cost of oil and gas production, solving carbon, running government departments well, everything else).
If a problem can’t be fixed by giving experts access to the right data, it probably can’t be fixed at all.
Many experts in critical roles have a tiny percentage of the data which would help them do their jobs better readily available.
What experts need
Experts need the right data presented in a clear and consistent way so they can make the right decisions.
The data needs to show them where they are, what is happening, things they should be aware of, times when they were in a similar situation before and what happened.
Entering data must be as simple as possible
They must have a rough understanding of how the system works
The system must also motivate the experts – give them suggestions which hold their interest
People working together must also have access to the same data, so they can discuss what it means
Experts may be part of a process, but it probably makes sense to separate the process management with the challenge of providing them with the right data, otherwise it gets too complicated.
In order to provide this
They probably need ongoing service and continuous customisation of the software to changing needs. This is not something big companies are usually very good at.
The user interface will probably be web hosted
Building the right user interface, and delivering the right data to it, will also need domain expertise
There will be different interfaces for people in different roles. People in a chain will see the data of people before and after them in a chain; people in management roles will see the data of their subordinates.
Under the hood
Getting the right data to the right place is no trival matter
It requires a lot of very complex data translation work, which will all need to be paid for, from the value generated for the domain experts – which means the domain experts have to be supportive of the idea
Data standards will be very helpful, particularly in working out the intersections between streaming and fixed data
Data analytics are important – but the effort is wasted unless the right data can be delivered to the right place to someone who understands what it is
The software will probably be cloud hosted
Low code tools will help put the software together faster – and make it clearer to the developers how it works – and make it easier to update.
The commercial model
Expert users must be involved in development as much as possible – since they (or their departments) are paying for the development
Need to be space for independent companies of all sizes in every layer – the user interface layer, getting data to the user interface, underlying databases, analytics, cloud hosting, low code tools
Common errors made in creating Software for Domain Experts
Too much emphasis on ‘business process management’ and not enough on getting the right data to the right people
IT department taking a reactive mindset – fixing problems rather than creating the best possible system
Not enough willingness to do the really difficult work!