Changing the World...One Idea at a Time
How has Transoft’s culture been influenced by the spirit of innovation?
“At Transoft, we have been highly focused on this sense of innovation, with the primary goal of creating immense value to our customers. This has resulted in productivity gains of 500% or more,” enthuses Milton. “A significant part of our energy and development budget is focused on innovation and as a result we have seen a direct impact on our success at least 70% of the time. It can be extremely frightening to those on the front line of design production, just as computers were to defunct electric typewriters service technicians!”
As Transoft Solutions grew from a two-person company to a six-person company in the late nineties, both Milton and JD knew that innovation, and creative innovation at that, was a valuable characteristic of their success. By this time, GuidSIGN had become a household name in the sign design industry. Even at the beginning, Milton often encouraged his staff to put themselves in their customers’ shoes to create value.
“It wasn’t as if we were declaring ourselves as innovators,” quips Milton. “It seemed to be part of our DNA - we always look at a product idea in a way that will enhance the user’s productivity, be unique in the marketplace, yet logical in how it works. We want to create products that our users find easy to use and make them say ‘Wow!’ That’s how it has been time after time from the very beginning!”
Transoft’s success as innovators has propelled a creative work environment, and encouraging this work style is an important requirement of a corporate leader. Today Transoft’s employees naturally think creatively and with an entrepreneurial mindset within their own areas of influence. The culture of innovation is infectious and forms a strong component of Transoft’s workplace, so much so that many new employees find it strange at first but soon see the leverage it gives the company over its competitors.
“A culture of innovation embraces risks and the possibility of failure without remorse,” notes Milton confidently. In the case of product development, there are two schools of thought – both have user needs as a basis for success; however in one case the users define a work process, while the innovative approach is to strive for a new and better process. “The former approach resides in the minds of risk-averse product managers, while the latter elevates the value of the innovation. Personally, I find the former a boring exercise lacking any challenge!” exclaims Milton. “Instead, what we shoot for is the latter approach addressing users’ needs in a creative manner and delivering a powerful solution unlike anything the world has seen before.”
Today Marketing, Sales, Development and Product Management all work harmoniously towards a common goal that reinforces the innovative culture and goes beyond to deliver pioneering software solutions. “Launching TORUS, for example, the world’s leading roundabout design software, was a ‘managed innovation’ exercise across several teams,” notes Noel Dolotallas, VP Corporate Marketing. “The Marketing team launched aggressive pre-launch campaigns which successfully drove close to 1000 webinar sign ups. Development, QA, and Product Management collaborated creatively to create Transoft’s first symbiotic software which was “powered by AutoTURN” – the first of its kind. And for Sales, because TORUS was the first product that dove heavily into engineering design, they developed new approaches for communicating value through product webinars and evaluation programs,” Noel continued.
The early software developers worked continuously to bring value to transportation engineers in a multitude of disciplines. The vehicle turning simulations at the core of AutoTURN became the foundation for several of Transoft’s subsequent product releases. Airport planners, construction consultants and highway engineers have all realized tremendous gains in productivity based on the spirit of innovation that inspired the creation of other products such as ParkCAD, TORUS, NEXUS and AeroTURN. Appropriately, the company has lived and delivered on its motto of “Driving Productivity through Innovation”.
Now you know part of the original AutoTURN story and the innovation culture that drives Transoft, we’ll take you back in time including Milton’s over-the water moves, first from Uganda to the United Kingdom and then from the UK to Canada. Let’s see how Milton’s travels impacted his life today and how it played into the Transoft success in the next installment of the Our Story in the link below.