It's a question that constantly haunts me, and it lies at the very heart of the debate between opinionated and non-opinionated software.
At Estii, we face the ongoing challenge of creating more efficient estimation workflows without forcing users to completely abandon their existing processes and flexibility.
The Efficiency Trap
Opinionated software champions efficiency and simplicity, guiding users towards an optimised way of doing things. But here's the catch: implementing opinionated features often requires departing from familiar workflows. Users must adapt, learn new methods, and embrace change, trading short-term familiarity for long-term efficiency gains.
The Flexibility Mirage
On the other hand, non-opinionated software offers flexibility. It allows users to customise and shape the software to fit their unique needs and preferences. Sounds ideal, right? Well, not quite. Flexibility often comes at the cost of efficiency. Non-opinionated software, like complex spreadsheets, can become a labyrinth of confusion and inconsistency, hindering productivity and progress.
Balancing the force
At Estii, we aim to strike a balance between these two philosophies, empowering users with "estimation superpowers" that blend ease of use, flexibility, and efficiency. It's a delicate tightrope to walk, but one I believe is necessary to streamline the estimation process.
When designing features, we carefully consider how to guide users through configuration processes that strike a balance between efficiency and a gentle learning curve. By replacing time-consuming manual processes, centralising data and calculations, and syncing with real-time updates, we offer clarity, accuracy, and more time for strategic pricing and negotiations.
Take for example, how different users need to slice up estimates - by phase/feature/task, risk/priority, resource/schedule, or cost/price/margin. Spreadsheets force you to flatten this data into a wide table. In contrast, Estii provides an opinionated hierarchy that hides this complexity, making it available only when needed in the relevant context.
Embracing the Discomfort
Change can be uncomfortable, especially when it challenges established processes. But in the world of estimation, where accuracy and efficiency are paramount, embracing a little discomfort becomes essential. It's about finding the right balance and understanding the trade-off between initial effort and long-term reward.
So, are you willing to sacrifice familiarity for efficiency? At Estii, we believe that embracing opinionated software can unlock new levels of productivity and strategic insight. It's a journey that requires stepping out of your comfort zone, but the rewards are worth it.