Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Questions and Answers

I had someone I respect ask me the following questions.  This surprised me somewhat because I thought sure our web site was conveying the message.  So just in case you have these same questions and didn't see the answers on the site, here they are in one place.

  • What is the actual proposed 4 offering consists of?  A - Liferay, OpenBravo, Pentaho and JackRabbit as an integrated Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription.
  • How it's going to be interconnected, or interoperates, or packaged to 'sell'.  A - All 4 are integrated and share data in an interoperable way.  Pentaho will have all the OpenBravo data sources available to you as well as some predefined reports and dashboards that you can expose in Liferay.
  • Have you clearly identified Who the Customer IS? A - Yes Small to Medium scale Enterprises.
  • What Problem they have that you Solve? A - Portal with collaboration and content management; ERP / Accounting; Business Intelligence, reporting and Analytics, and File Storage.
  • What is the Pain and how are you the Pain Killer? A - Many Small to Medium scale enterprises are not software companies, have no software expertise and do not even have any server machines or the expertise to install and operate them.  We make it easy for a Small to Medium scale enterprise to subscribe and start using quality solutions for less time and effort with zero software to install or maintain.
  • What are you offering that's Better/Faster/Cheaper, less painful (by 10x or more) for the user to experience vs. their current reality?? A - Even if you were to download and isntall all 4 of the applications and even if you had the IT expertise to get them up and running, we offer them in an integrated way, and we do all the maintenance and can provide professional support as needed.
  •  It wasn't clear if it included ERP and Analytics? or if that was something else offered by someone else?  A - All 4 are part of one integrated subscription service. 
  • or if this was going to be a ala carte type of 'build your own enterprise' solution... A - Nothing is needed to get started, however we do offer extensive customization in both the Portal and if needed to customize the applications with Professional services consulting.
  • Further, much like www.appsumo.com or what others are building at other web-applications for business productivity suites are offering, ie. Zoho.com or 37Signals.com or in the case of CaaS, MS Office 365 even... it's not clear what I'd be buying? A - Well there are indeed plenty of choices out there in the marketplace, and some are likely going to be better suited to your particular needs.  SalesForce.com and NetSuite are two more that offer some of what O4BO offers.  I am not going to say that O4BO is better than any of those but we think the 4 we have chosen are superior to some and our customers will decide.
  • Just how easy to use/easy to run/operate is it? A - As we bring the applications online we will produce getting started videos that will demonstrate this.  
  • How robust, reliable and scalable it really is. and is it right-sized for me? or pure overkill, vs. my needs? A - We are working with IBM to put O4BO on the Smart Cloud to make it as reliable and scalable as it possibly can be.  We are also going to be offering several options on how you can employ the applications with pricing options and flexibility with no long term contracts, just pay for what you use as you use it.

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