‘Overwhelmed’ and ‘frustrated’ are words often used by our prospective customers when relating their experiences of life before FloorVision and yieldHUB. A colleague recently mentioned that a prospective customer said they were “overwhelmed by the constant need to convert STDF to XML”, for example. Another described how they were “frustrated” by the limitations imposed by their previous desktop yield analysis solution, especially being required to start from scratch every time a new version of a report (e.g. Gage R&R) has to be generated.
Overwhelmed and frustrated are powerful words in both meaning and sound. The Collins Dictionary definition of overwhelm is ‘to overpower the thoughts, emotions and senses’ or ‘to weigh or rest upon overpoweringly’. Frustrate is defined as ‘to hinder or prevent (the efforts, plans or desires)’ or ‘to upset, agitate or tire’.
Is it possible that engineers are overwhelmed and frustrated in the literal sense of these words? Are they correct in the use of these words to describe the consequences of daily use of inadequate systems to analyse their yield data? If so, what does this actually mean and what are the consequences for them and the organisations they work for?
I haven’t come across any survey results on the affects on engineers when their yield analysis tool is inadequate. It occurs to me as I write that engineers would be known more for their technical analytical ability more so than for their analysis of their behaviour and emotions. However, I suspect stress would eventually emerge, if not immediately, then certainly over time. The most commonly cited result of any workplace issues that are not dealt with would appear to be stress.
Stress can lead to problems for individuals, emotionally in terms of anxiety and irritability, for example, or in physical terms such as headaches and raised blood pressure. Stress can also affect a person’s intellectual performance, causing lack of concentration and difficulties with thought processes, for instance, and their behaviour. The outcome of these difficulties obviously have major consequences for organisations. High absenteeism and employee turnover, as well as poor performance, low morale and lack of motivation, to mention but a few. The bottom line is, of course, profits take a nose dive.
Allow your engineers the freedom to do what they are trained to do. Free up their time to be innovative and creative and improve the processes already in place. Allow them the tools that will increase productivity and improve profits. Allow them to be overjoyed, not overwhelmed, calm and not frustrated!
– Colette O’Malley