Are we there yet?
Do you remember that childhood trip to Disneyland? You know the one, long hours sitting in the backseat of your parent’s car. You’re hungry, tired, and your little your sister keeps crossing the invisible boundary onto your side of the seat.
Back before the iPod, portable DVD players, and Game Boy Advance (the Atari 2600 wasn’t exactly mobile), we traveled the country in the backs of our parent’s cars with only one weapon in our time tracking arsenal… “Are we there yet?” I could see the back of my mother’s shoulders tense up each time the question was asked, my father remained grim faced and just depressed the gas pedal a little harder.
Over the past two years of trying to get our new time clock software to market, I’ve replayed those scenes from my childhood more often than I care to admit. It started out innocent enough, telling our customers about all the cool new features coming with the new time clock (Sure, you’ll be able to have breakfast with Donald Duck!). I mean nothing satisfies me more than being able to tell people what they want to hear. “You’ll be able to create as many leave categories as you want!” “No problem, you’ll be able to setup as many different overtime rules as you need!” “The server will even run as a background service!” “That’s coming in the next release!” The list goes on and on.
After awhile I began to doubt that what I was telling customers was ever really going to happen. The director of engineering kept assuring me it was just a matter of a little more time. Management meetings allowed me to witness the unveiling of key components in our time clock software engineering cycle. What I didn’t realize was that every time I told a customer “Display Groups in the upcoming release will solve that problem for you” an engineer heard “Are we there yet?” Shoulders tensed up and the gas pedal of the engineering machine just seemed to push a little harder.
Nothing restores a ten year old’s faith in his parent’s ability to provide for his happiness than being welcomed into the Magic Kingdom by Goofy’s timeless grin. Ah, the wait is over. Life is once again in balance. Even a whiny little sister doesn’t seem so troublesome now. Marching through those gates makes you forget all the things you went through to get there. Mother looks much more relaxed, and even Father looks a little less grim.
The excitement has returned to the Redcort Software technical support team with the release of Virtual TimeClock ‘09. “You’ll soon be able to…” has turned into “Now you can... Let me show you how!” We’ve forgotten the endless hours spent testing time clock conversions, scrutinizing time card reports, and comparing timesheets.
Are we there yet? Oh yeah. Life in the realm of time tracking software is once again in balance.