Building quality through trust



Infoland is a Business Reporter client.

Marieke Kessels, CEO of software company Infoland, explains to Jeremy Swinfen Green why trust is at the heart of the company’s approach to business

Jeremy Swinfen Green: Tell me about Infoland. What is it about you that makes you special?

Marieke Kessels: At Infoland, we develop software which helps professionals and organisations excel by guaranteeing quality and safety, and we have been doing this since 1998.

I believe that there are several things that make us stand out. First, we keep our promises: our customers often thank us for our sincerity and reliability. Second, we enjoy our work. Our culture is informal, and our reporting lines are short: this helps us to excel. Third, while technology is our backbone, we look beyond it and have a unique focus on people, on end users. Fourth, we innovate constantly. Innovation means risk-taking but we are not afraid to step out of our comfort zone if it means we can continue to surprise our customers. And fifth, we believe that there is always room for improvement. We don’t settle for what is already here: we strive for what could be.

JSG: There are many business software companies. What does Infoland do that is different?

MK: We provide quality and risk management software designed to help organisations with continuous improvement. Our primary software product is the Zenya SaaS solution.

Zenya consists of a suite of five modules. There’s a tool for document management, one for incident and workflow management, one for audit management, one for strategic and operational risk management, and lastly a tool with which organisations can actively involve employees in quality and risk management. Together, these five modules can turn uncertainty into opportunities that organisations can have confidence in.

The Zenya suite is not just designed to be used in compliance or risk management. It can be used across the whole organisation – from the upper echelons of management to the junior employees in the frontline and back office. Anyone can work with Zenya, in whatever way they want – on desktop and mobile devices, online or offline. And with Zenya, organisations don’t just have tools for risk and quality management, they have tools for creating awareness, encouraging proactivity and creating a trusted work environment. This means that quality and risk management can genuinely become an integral part of any business.

JSG: Developing a deep understanding of your customers must be very important for you. How do you go about this?

MK: We don’t just provide a software licence and leave our customers to get on with it. We are intensely involved with our customers, sharing our expertise and providing support. As part of this, we have developed an online community where our customers discuss problems and share solutions.

People in this community are constantly coming up with new ideas for ways of making our software more valuable and easier to use. We continuously improve and optimise our solutions with the active involvement of our customers.

JSG: As well as optimisation, innovation must be critical for the growth of an organisation like yours. Tell me how you drive innovation.

MK: Innovation is an essential part of our company, and it happens in many ways. As an organisation we generate a huge number of new ideas, from our employees and from our customers. For example, we organise innovation events for our co-workers and, especially, our customers. These events are popular. During them we promote knowledge sharing, showcase new innovations, get immediate feedback and talk about how people are deploying Zenya.

Innovations need to provide real benefits to users. And this is something we are able to focus on. Because we’re family-owned, we are independent. So when we innovate, we can concentrate on our customers’ success, rather than our own.

Right now we are looking at how AI can be built into some of our Zenya modules. For example, AI could help people find information quickly by identifying relevant parts of long documents, saving people a lot of time. But people would need to be able to trust its outputs. If someone is reading an extract from a document, they need to be confident that the AI has used the latest signed-off version of the document. Innovation mustn’t be at the expense of reliability. People must be able to trust the services we provide.

We actively involve our customers in our innovation, demonstrating new products in webinars where they can make suggestions, and involving them in tests. Ultimately, we will roll out a minimum viable product that customers can choose to trial if they want to.

Not all of them will though. And that’s because many of our customers operate in critical risk areas such as healthcare and utilities. For these customers, quality and reliability are more important than innovation. This is always a balance we need to be aware of, and our aim is always to provide innovation while maintaining reliability and continuity.

The trust people place in our services helps us to innovate. We work closely together, and they trust us to deliver effective innovations that improve their performance. Because we provide them with reliable solutions that help them reach their goals, many of our customers have been with us for a long time. They have grown with us and we have grown with them because they trust us to support their growth. It’s a great synergy to have.

JSG: It sounds as though trust is something that is very important to you.

MK: It is. We talk about “trust over compliance”. This might seem strange, because compliance is a big driver for many organisations, a requirement to fulfil legal requirements or follow formal standards. So yes, compliance is important, of course. But compliance doesn’t drive success. If compliance is compromised, most of the time people can still do their work.

Because “trust over compliance” is so important to us, we make choices based on this principle when developing our solutions. This means that we don’t just develop software, we develop solutions. When our customers use our software, they can benefit from the other services we provide. We offer support that goes well beyond implementation: not only before and during implementation, but also during operation and evaluation. We can help them optimise processes and workflows, and discover and implement new applications. And we act as a knowledge partner and thought leader helping our customers achieve more. Our end-to-end services make quality and risk management accessible to virtually any company.

It also means that we focus on people. We want to make work life safer, healthier and more enjoyable for as many people as possible. So we’d rather help to create benefits and improved results for an entire organisation, than just working with a small group. And when we do this, our aim is always to make quality and risk management more efficient. We are very critical of operations that don’t add much value, that make you feel that you are just checking boxes. If we can automate or even eliminate steps in processes, we will. After all, if things are easy and intuitive to use, more people can, and will, use them.

JSG: How do you make sure that everybody – your customers, partners and colleagues – trusts Infoland?

MK: Our employees trust us because we trust them. There is no need for micromanagement because we are all working towards the same goal.

And our customers trust us because we practise what we preach. They know that we keep our promises, and they see that we have quality and reliability built into the heart of our processes, alongside agility and innovation.

Of course, there is always going to be at least some room for improvement. Good is never good enough for us. That is why we are always striving to do things better, hand in hand with our customers. We enjoy what we do, and we enjoy helping our customers. That’s a key to our success.

What we do involves technology. But it’s our focus on people and their challenges that makes us unique. We are constantly innovating to achieve better results for our customers. And because we always put the end-user first, our customers know that they will find it simple to implement our solutions. They trust us to make things better for them. So you see, ultimately and at the core of it, it really is all about trust.


To learn more about how Infoland helps organisations and professionals excel, visit infoland.eu.


To find out more about Zenya SaaS solution please visit Zenya-software.com .



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