I'm spending a lot of time thinking about keeping things simple . I've written before about this article over at Wired focused on the competitive advantage of actually LIMITING features.
If it works for video cameras, why won't it work well for the services we provide in HR? I'm exploring this in more detail in a column over at Workforce, here's a taste:
"I love to watch friends and family members struggle with over-engineered products, especially if I already know how to use those products well. It just makes you feel a little bit superior to see someone struggle to use something you’ve mastered, doesn’t it?
You know the type of product I’m talking about and what happens when someone tries to use it. Consider the following examples:
--High-end HD video cameras that make dads look like Quentin Tarantino showed up at a youth baseball game, until they put the camera back in the bag five minutes later because it’s too hard to use. The suburban version of Reservoir Dogs will have to wait.
--Forcing a non-coffee drinker to order you a grande nonfat latte while you sit in the passenger seat and snicker at their confusion in the drive-through lane at Starbucks. Just say it, Mom. They’ll know what you mean—honest."
Of course, if it's hard or embarrassing to use your HR services, ultimately no one will use them and folks will just work around you. Click over to the entire column at Workforce to read some HR examples of over-engineered products, and what can be done to fix them. Drop me a comment over there about other examples you see.
Make something less complicated than it has to be for someone today. It's the ultimate HR gift.