Net magazine essay: Thinking beyond websites

This month’s net magazine (issue 297) features an essay that I wrote, called ‘Thinking beyond websites'. It talks about how websites and customers shouldn’t be the boundary of our focus, and how we can look more broadly - thinking about different considerations, and applying web technologies and practices to a wider range of areas in order to bring about real change.

“Think back to your latest digital project. I imagine it probably happened because something old had problems, or someone identified an opportunity to do better. Almost all of our projects (excluding those for learning or fun) are borne out of a desire to improve. We want to make websites faster, more secure, look nicer, or be easier to use. The rate of change of technology available to us means there’s always something we can be tweaking to take advantage of the latest spec, API, or library. Nothing stands still. Everything moves, and we, as people who work with the web, move with it.”

In the article I talk briefly about my own shifting focus, from starting out as a developer and just being focused on getting sites built, through to understanding the importance of users and factors outside of the immediate situation. It goes on to talk about how understanding root causes is a valuable skill to have, and gives examples of considerations within the topics of technology, processes, people & culture, and strategy - all of which can have a huge impact on change for the better.

The essay is an extremely condensed version of themes from my Render conference closing keynote, and I hope that it gives any netmag readers who haven’t yet started thinking about the impact of these different areas some food for thought.

You should be able to pick up a copy very soon if you’d like to read more, or let me know if you’d prefer to have a chat about these kind of topics in person, over a cup of tea.

Posted by Sally Lait

Sally is the lead consultant and founder of Records Sound the Same, helping people with digital transformation. She's also a speaker, coder, gamer, author, and jasmine tea fiend.