What my dad taught me about durable tech tools

When my father, Edgardo, came to America from the Philippines, he took any job he could to help our family make ends meet. As someone who was handy, he often took jobs in manufacturing. First, working for a company that makes heating and melting equipment for manufacturing. Later, working for several tool and die manufacturers.

Because of his career in manufacturing, Edgardo was always around tools. And tools, to him, were not just a means to an end. He had a passion for them. In fact, when I was a child, my father would frequently take my family to different tool stores.

Home improvement and life lessons

It was sort of like a real-life version of the show Home Improvement. When we had free time, we’d find ourselves at all sorts of tool stores from local manufacturers to specialty equipment stores to retail chains, like Sears. If you needed something, Sears probably had it.

It was also the one place you could find “Craftsman” tools. While I can’t vouch for their quality today, my dad swore by Craftsman.

“Why is that?” you might ask.

Because they were durable to the point of seeming indestructible. My dad amassed quite a collection of Craftsman tools over the years. He still has them and continues to use many of them today. Of course, he also has a big red Craftsman toolbox that holds many of them.

When I moved out of my parents’ house after college, my dad handed me a bag of Craftsman tools. I still have the bag and the tools that were inside. And I still use many of them – none of them has failed me yet.

In fact, some of these tools are now old enough to legally drink alcohol.

20 years – and still going strong

This year, a customer spoke at our Sales Annual Kickoff meeting. When he was sharing how he used OnBase – our content services platform – he referred to it as “durable.”

That struck a chord with me. And it reminded me of my father.

Meanwhile, the customer told us how he and his organization had built an accounts payable invoice processing solution with OnBase almost 20 years ago. Yes, that’s right. Twenty.

And that AP solution with electronic forms and workflow is still in use today. While it isn’t the exact same solution – it’s gone through its fair share of enhancements – it is still churning and providing efficiency today.

Even though it’s still the same tool, it has allowed the customer to evolve and change its processes to meet the company’s needs over the last 20 years. It has stood the test of time and the temptation of investing in new products that might solve – or might not solve – the same needs.

This kind of durability ultimately leads to a lower total cost of ownership. Much like how this customer has been able to use the same “bag of tools” for 20 years, I have not needed to buy a new screwdriver since my dad gave gifted me a set.

So, next time you’re in the market for a new solution, consider durability in the long-run. Being able to invest in tools that will last 20+ years is hard to beat.

Eric Patalinghug

Eric Patalinghug

Eric, sometimes referred to as P.Hugs, is Hyland’s senior manager for R&D concept solutions. His team focuses on researching, incubating, and developing ready-to-deploy business applications on the Hyland product suite.... read more about: Eric Patalinghug