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You want to do what?

Posted on by Brent Lowe

As mentioned, I was given the opportunity to speak at Virginia Oracle Users Group yesterday during 2 sessions. Both went really well with a lot of good questions from the audience. I tag-teamed the first session on printing attachments (Word/PDF/Images/etc..) stored alongside documents from Oracle EBS with Ben Bruno (President, STR Software). My role for this session was to look pretty and demonstrate the software. Luckily this was a techie conference so people generally understood when I was better at demonstrating the software.

So, while going through the demo (VPN to EBS R12 running at our office and then printing back to a printer hooked to my laptop all done over flaky hotel wireless!), a member of the audience asked a great question.

“Do you listen to your customers to determine new functionality?”

I believe the answer here at STR Software is a resounding YES. In fact it could not have been a more perfect question for the topic we were discussing as the functionality I was demonstrating came about from a customer request! We were at OAUG Collaborate 2008 in Denver finishing up a separate presentation when we got a question from a member of the audience who saw that we could deliver attachments via fax and email, but was wondering if we could print them as well. Light bulbs went off, and we continued to work with that customer closely over the next 6 months to understand their exact business needs and developed a solution that would not only give them the functionality that they desired, but also a solution we could offer to our entire customer base (and even a solution that we could go to various tradeshows and speak about!).

After sharing that example, I dug a little deeper into our product and pulled up some of our main configuration forms and was able to go screen by screen explaining that this feature was created because this customer needed this particular functionality and on and on. It was awesome to see how much of the product has really been driven by the requests of our customers and a great reminder that soliciting customer feedback, listening and taking action is the only way to build a product.

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