What do you think makes a quality product?

Posted on 28. Dec, 2010 by in Exact Online

Exact is continually striving to deliver the highest quality products possible. All our development teams place a great deal of focus on ensuring that our new releases provide our customers and users with the level of quality they’ve come to expect from us.

To be able to know exactly what is expected from us, it’s essential to have a close relationship with our customers and product users. Unfortunately, maintaining close, personal relationships with the number of people using Exact Online (Exact Online has more than 15,000 subscriptions source) is nearly impossible. That said, our teams in support, marketing, sales and customer service do keep a close eye what is going on at our customers and across the market. People from within the development team also have contact with customers on a regular basis. All these sources of input enable us to enhance and improve Exact Online in line with people’s needs, while maintaining the quality that they demand.

In the last few months the Exact Online development team has put even more focus on quality for the product itself. We passionately believe that it’s the customer and the user that determine the level of quality we achieve, and that a number of factors determine the quality they experience. I won’t go into them all here, but a few are outlined below:

  • Functionality: Exact Online should provide the functionality that is needed to support the customer’s business needs;
  • Usability: Exact Online should be able to be used in a way that people can relate to. This will help achieve proper and efficient use of the product;
  • Security: Exact Online should be a secure environment. Customers and users should feel and experience that Exact Online is secure and does not give any access to data that should not available.

There are more factors that we think are important, but I’ll hold back on those here for a reason. I would like to know from you, the reader, what quality means to you! When you think of Exact Online (or a similar web-based application) what do you think is important in achieving a positive overall impression? This is not so much about your ideas for new features or functions, but more about what you as a (future) customer and/or user of Exact Online would need in order to experience it as a high quality product…

Some suggestions:

  • Quality to me is that the calculations in Exact Online are always correct;
  • Quality to me is that the performance of Exact Online is always adequate;
  • Quality to me is that new legislation is available at the start date of that legislation;
  • Etc.

In the next few months I will post articles explaining more about the factors that we think are important, incorporating your feedback in the process. Please let me know your thoughts as a comment to this post or send me a mail. Thank you!

One Response to “What do you think makes a quality product?”

  1. Aad 't Hart

    29. Dec, 2010

    Quality in the eyes of the manufacturer or quality in the eyes of the customer vary greatly.

    When I buy a new car I don’t ask if it’s reliable, lasts 3 years and does at least 120.000km. I assume this is all the case. However the manufacture has done a lot of testing and quality monitoring to make sure the product meets those basis requirements. These quality attributes are a manufactures responsibility because not meeting the basic assumptions can damage your reputation and brand (ask Toyota!)

    When I buy a car I might ask about the fuel consumption or acceleration, but they are not quality attributes, they are features of the product. It is however a quality attribute that the advertised values match the reality.

    When I buy/rent accounting software I don’t ask if it meets legal requirements, is reliable and secure. I just asume it is. I do ask about feature my business might require!

    Quality in the eyes of the customer is not something you can measure, it is just there! However quality gets noticed when you feel, touch and use the product. Why do we we think a BMW is of better quality as a Kia? Both probably have about the same quality measurements in their factories so that doesn’t make the difference. The difference is that BMW engineers to give the impression of quality, for instance to employ specialists to engineer the sound of a closing door (it doesn’t make the door any more durable). It’s subjective and emotional.

    So what makes a quality product? Attention for the smallest, even invisible detail!

    P.S. Why is this comment form so small and uses really small letters?

    Reply to this comment

Leave a Reply