What Differentiating Tech is & Why That’s What You Should Focus On

What Differentiating Tech is & Why That’s What You Should Focus On

In News by David Henry

I want to share a quick post on differentiating tech and non-differentiating tech and why you should be focusing on one and not the other.

Let’s first quickly define what I mean by differentiating tech and non-differentiating tech.

Differentiating tech is technology that separates you or differentiates you from your competition.  

For example, several years ago, Domino’s Pizza created an app that allowed you to order your pizza from your phone.  You could customize it and even track where it was while on it’s way to you.  No other pizza company had done this at the time and it quickly differentiated Domino’s from all the other pizza chains.  It was a great example of a non-digital company becoming a digital company, even when it’s main product was pizza.  

On the other hand, non-differentiating tech is technology that does not differentiate you from your competitor.  

For example, if you’ve created custom reception tech that tracks your visitors and properly routes incoming calls, that is something that likely won’t differentiate you from the competition.  Or if you’ve created custom workflow systems for Human Resources, again, probably won’t set you apart.  In both cases, there are great solutions available off the shelf that you won’t need to support.  

The reason for pointing out this distinction is that your company and your company’s tech team should ONLY be focusing on technology that differentiates you from your competition. Otherwise, you are likely wasting your team’s time and your company’s money. 

Let me give you a quick example.  For one of our law firm clients, they had created a lot of custom applications for their firm.  In fact, they had more than 60 apps that had been developed internally. 

That means that their tech team had to support, update and maintain each and every app.  

Our assessment showed that the majority of those apps were non-differentiating tech for which they could by off-the-shelf replacements that cost WAY less and wouldn’t require the amount of resources and time from their internal team.  

We saved them a few hundred thousand dollars in salaries when we re-organized the technology and the tech team that supported those apps.    

We then focused the team ONLY on differentiating tech, and they then developed a proprietary software that did set them apart from their competition.  

So, in the end, they saved money and still created technology that supported their business plans and goals. 

In the end, that is the goal of ALL tech transformation.. Aligning your tech to support your business goals.  

So, do you focus just on differentiating tech?  Let us know, we’d love to hear your stories. 

If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you, you can contact us here.


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