Our “Ah Ha” Moment
Something about Volkswagen’s 1990 marketing tagline, “Fahrvergnügen: It's what makes a car a Volkswagen", has always stuck with me. It could have been that I was eleven years old in 1990 and Fahrvergnügen was a funny sounding word, but I prefer to think that this appreciation was foreshadowing for my future passion for Product Management. Fahrvergnügen is the intangible pleasure one experiences from driving around in a car. I’ve thought of this word often whenever I use a product and I’m left with general feeling of satisfaction or fulfillment. Consumer goods like an iPhone or a great set of knives are good examples of producing this kind of experience for me.
Bringing this Fahrvergnügen-esq experience into enterprise software always seemed like a lofty ideal. Often in enterprise software, market pressures lead to consolidation and acquisition, feature wars, and commoditization, but rarely lead to consistent improvement of underlying technology and evolution of user experience. Software companies often chase after feature parity in order to compete, rather than stepping back and trying to create a product that provides the user with a greater sense of fulfillment and satisfaction.
The process of naming a product is just as hard as naming a baby or trying to come up with a band name. When a group of us sat down to name the application though, something inspiring happened. In the midst of a violent brainstorm of abstract and made up words, Tyler Westnedge our Creative Director stopped everyone in their tracks and blurted out “How about Workarea?”. What hit everyone in the room, beyond its literal nature and simplicity, was that it embodied the years of focus and vision of the company and application.
WebLinc has worked with dynamic ecommerce retailers for over 22 years. Four years ago, all of that hands on knowledge of how ecommerce retailers need to work everyday was leveraged into the application structure and user experience of the application formally known as the WebLinc commerce platform. While we didn’t have a specific word for it, we were trying to create the most functional and flexible application for our customers. We studied the behaviors and needs of lean multidisciplinary teams and understood that they no longer needed a hodge-podge mess of acronyms, but needed a singular application with a shared user experience and shared data to perform 90% of their daily tasks. Our customers in fact needed an ecommerce work area.
Workarea is not just the name of our product, but it’s an encapsulation of an “ah ha” moment. Workarea is the only ecommerce platform built for teams of people rather than checkboxes on an RFP. It’s built this way to give the user Workarea’s own version of Fahrvergnügen. Workarea not only redefines the experience of using enterprise software, but redefines how lean cross-functional commerce teams work together and play by their own rules so they can sell more.