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The Software You Choose vs the Software You’re Stuck With

Have you ever thought about why your work software is so much clunkier than the apps you use at home? It feels like they don’t even belong in the same century.

At home, you ask Alexa to turn on the lights. You tell Siri to play your favorite song list, and you use your phone to find a good recipe for dinner. Your smart TV remembers all your favorite shows, telling you when you have new episodes.

This is life in the 21st century.

Then you log into your software at work and suddenly you’re trapped in an episode of Stranger Things, staring at a blinking green cursor circa 1983.

Why is the software you get stuck with at work so far behind?

When people get stuck with “legacy” software

You’ve probably heard people use the term “legacy” software. That’s a very kind name for a serious problem in the world of product development.

The term “legacy” is usually associated with good things. When people talk about leaving a legacy behind, they mean they want to help people enjoy a brighter future. Or they want to create a product that will make life easier for millions of people.

They don’t mean, “I want to create software that will become antiquated within 5 years, married to an outdated operating system that the company will be scared to upgrade.”

But all too often, that’s the reality.

So you learn how to use it because it’s part of your job. After a while, you even get good at it. You’re one of the best at what you do because you can remember where everything is in a product that’s intrinsically hard to use.

But you have to ask yourself, do you want to be recognized in your job for knowing how to use outdated software?

OR would you rather be recognized for things like:

  • Always having the information people need, when they need it
  • Providing valuable, strategic insights driven by hard data
  • Completing your tasks in half the time, with less risk of errors

That’s why we focus our design on the way people actually want to work.

The software you’d actually choose to work with

Our goal at Bill.com is to put your needs at the heart of our product development efforts to create software that people would actually choose for themselves.

We want our software, even if it’s being used by thousands or tens of thousands of employees, to feel just like the apps you use at home: simple, convenient, personal, and so intuitively smart.

We want that software to feel comfortable and approachable. When you first sit down and look at it, we want it to feel familiar. That’s why we pay attention to the apps you use at home and the way you work with that clunky legacy software.

Because what we’re really matching isn’t software at all—it’s your own instincts about where things go, how things work, what information goes together, and how it all makes sense.

So when you’re looking at an invoice in the Bill.com app, you don’t have to go hunting through your email for external messages about that invoice. It’s all collected in the app, and you can just click a button to see it.

Or if something’s being held up, you can immediately see its status and find out why. If you need an approval from someone else, you can send them a notification on their phone, right from the app, to keep things moving.

Better yet, our Intelligent Virtual Assistant (IVA) learns how you work, reading invoices and filling out information for your approval, getting better over time. It even flags potential issues like duplicate invoices, alerting you to potential problems before they happen.

That’s how you should be able to work—focusing on doing your job, not on figuring out how to use your software. That’s why on average our customers report, on average, saving 50 percent of their time on accounts payable.

In short, the app should help you do your job. It should even help you get better at your job, encouraging you to explore all the features the app has to offer and making everything you do feel easy.

The best product experience should help you be more productive, more confident, more organized, and less stressed, so you can do your best work from day one. Welcome to Bill.com.

 

October 19, 2020
Venu Murthi
Venu Murthi, Vice President of Product Design & Research at Bill.com, is responsible for leading design strategy and product research to deliver efficient and intelligent experiences to the company’s customers. He brings in a customer-centric design approach with more than 18 plus years of experience working with global companies and building delightful customer experiences for the enterprise and consumer market segments. Previously, Venu was head of the design for financial services at PayPal & Xoom, where he scaled design and research teams to create product experiences for the global customer base. Prior to that, Venu held leadership roles at several companies in Silicon Valley, where he built design organizations to achieve product success by delivering intuitive product experiences. Venu holds his BS in Electronics & Communications from India, and is an MIT Certified NextGen Fintech & Design Thinking practitioner.