The tech stack needs to slim down and smarten up

Freshworks CMO Stacey Epstein on how CIOs can boost software value while lowering costs


Business software today can be overly complicated, expensive, and a drag on productivity. That’s one reason why CIOs are carefully scrutinizing software investments during a tough economic climate—and looking for opportunities to trim bloated tech stacks.

“Hitting goals while cutting costs at the same time is what’s required by companies of all sizes in this economic climate,” Freshworks Chief Marketing Officer Stacey Epstein said in a recent interview with FOX 28 in Columbus, Ohio. 

More than 9 in 10 IT professionals today report that their organizations could benefit from reducing overall software contracts, according to a Freshworks survey; 7 in 10 added that they would benefit from easier-to-use applications. 

“For years, big-brand software companies have been delivering technology that is layered with features, integrations, and customizations that require large IT teams to implement,” said Epstein.  So-called bloatware has bogged down both organizations and employees.

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Over one-third of IT pros say that current software slows down their work, according to the report; 60% say they “hate” using outdated legacy software that isn’t easy to use.

“The time is now for better value out of software,” Epstein added. “Modern and intuitive software can help teams move quickly and help businesses save money in the process.”

Consider the scenario of a front-line IT worker: If an employee’s computer isn’t working, that IT agent should be able to reach out to the employee in their preferred channel, whether it’s text, WhatsApp, or email. “If I’m the agent, I should be able to solve it within seconds. I need access to tech that does that,” said Epstein.

The right tech, increasingly, is AI. Acknowledging the debate surrounding AI’s potential to replace jobs, Epstein likened the role of AI to a copilot.

“You still need the human element to get the job done,” she said. “But AI helps me with context—it gives me history, it gives me ways to personalize and respond to customer requests. And it helps me solve issues faster so I can make my customers and employees happier and more productive.”