Slaying the monster of custom configuration

“Highly configurable“ is a selling point of many data-driven marketing technology solutions, and indeed it is a great thing. But use your power to configure wisely. It is easy to create a monster. Just because you can configure a system, doesn’t mean it should be. Don’t go buying a solution because it’s configurable, giving the impression that it can do whatever is needed.

Doing masses of configuring and customising is a clue that the software is not being used properly, has been misunderstood, or the wrong solution has been selected altogether. Every business is different, but rarely are they that different. Even the more complex and sophisticated systems (the highly configurable ones), have had lots of thought put into their design and what steps should follow others. When systems are configured, this workflow is often messed up because it isn’t understood or even recognised as existing.

It all comes back to understanding process and objectives before starting to tinker.. Then a tool can be found that naturally follows existing processes, which when coupled with good advice just requires a tweak, nip and tuck in key places to adapt it to specific business requirements.

So, yes, highly configurable systems are useful but don’t get carried away. The monster will come back and bite in the bottom…line.

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