In this post we’ll take an honest look at a difficult process that is sometimes involved in bringing a product to market. There are a number of phases included in the development of a new instrument at Technidyne, but the beta testing phase is one of the most important. This phase can be the make or break point for a new product. Being willing and able to act on what you learn, even at this late phase of development, can make leave the product as basic for the industry or a benchmark for others to try to try to achieve for years to come.
In this post we would like to share a letter with you that was originally written to the entire Technidyne team. It was written by Micky Rowell, Technidyne’s Northeast Area Manager. Here’s Micky’s letter…
Next Friday will mark the one-year anniversary of the absolute worst customer visit I have made in my illustrious 35+ years interfacing with customers in the Pulp and Paper industry.
That day was a visit to a major papermaking customer, they have been a very good customer of Technidyne for probably 30yrs+. I was there to introduce a beta version of the Color Touch X, The newest member of Spectrophometers from Technidyne. We were moments into testing when it was very clear, we had truly missed the mark, by a wide margin, in meeting this customer’s needs. My contacts were not sugar coating any of their frustration when it came to expressing their disappointment in what they had believed was to be the perfect replacement for their Color Touch 2 instruments they have been using for over 15 years. While the hardware was solid, the software was underperforming according to their expectations. It is not easy to hear from someone who I've grown to know and worked closely with for many years.
This story now brings us to yesterday, almost one year later. Thru many additional conversations over the course of months, I was able convince them to postpone the search for alternative spectrophotometers based on beta testing and convinced them we were implementing many of the features and functions they had expressed were absolutely necessary for them.
Yesterday now turns out to be certainly in the top 5 best days I've spent with a customer in the 35+ years I've been doing this.
To all of you who were involved in implementing AND TESTING, the features and functions offered in our Color Touch X,,,,,YOU HIT IT OUT OF THE PARK!!!!!
My contacts could not be more grateful, to Technidyne, for listening to them and then actually being capable, and willing to go back to the software drawing board to create an instrument that exceeded their expectations. These comments come from the VP of Technical, the VP of manufacturing and the Sr Process engineer responsible for grade development and shade conformance.
I left the mill yesterday on Cloud 9, knowing I work with some of the most clever and cool people in the industry.
Thank you all for all of your efforts,