Archive for the ‘SaaS’ Category

New Year, New Business Processes

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

I just received a recorded message from the local Toyota dealership in Austin. The message indicated that my vehicle is due for service and then provided me with the dealership phone number so I could call and schedule an appointment.

The approach Toyota is taking in proactively reaching out to their customer is good, but it’s not good enough and, in this instance, it wasn’t frictionless enough to get me to stop what I was doing and make a service appointment.

What might Toyota have done better?

1. Indicate which car required service. I own two Toyota vehicles so how about listing the year, make, and model of the vehicle that requires service.
2. Provide more specific information. Indicate type of service that is due and the cost.
3. Provide a more convenient call to action. Give me the option to connect to a customer service person by pressing a button, or to schedule the appointment via an IVR while I am still on the line.

Telling me which car required service and giving me the specific service information is good. Better is connecting me directly to a customer service agent (press 1 to connect schedule an appointment now) or allowing me to schedule an appointment via an IVR; either of those two options would have likely sealed the deal.

A call to action needs to be seamlessly integrated with convenience and one-click actions to enable the feeling of convenience. In lieu of that, if a customer doesn’t capture the number that is quickly rattled off, it’s less likely the customer will call the dealer. In my case I won’t make the call to the dealer until I have a problem with one of my cars or I remember that it’s time to change the oil.

In 2009 you will see more companies – from major enterprises to suppliers and distributors to brick and mortar establishments – deploying communications enabled business processes (CEBP) in ways that improve customer experience and drive sales. The NetworkIP Jaduka Intelligent Platform and our APIs enable businesses to deploy low-cost, efficient CEBP solutions and accrue benefits from day one. With CEBP, every sale has a far greater chance of being completed, and the customer experience will be both richer and frictionless.

Brian Kirk
VP Business Development
NetworkIP & Jaduka

SaaS & Mobile Productivity: Bright Spots for 2009

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

While most companies are reporting lower than expected earnings in 2008, there are some bright spots. NetworkIP has had our best year ever, reflecting a growing adoption of the NetworkIP Jaduka “Intelligent” Platform for telephony, voice/data applications, and feature development.

The Wall Street Journal reports that while software purchases are expected to decline, three pockets of technology will grow: Software as a Service (SaaS), Mobile Productivity Applications, and Security solutions.

We agree. We’re seeing a large increase in the numbers and types of telephony and commerce applications running on the NetworkIP Jaduka “Intelligent” Platform.  Adoption of our SaaS solutions and voice API is growing by about a million API calls a month. Our voice API opens call control and transaction processing to businesses, enabling them to more efficiently manage products and accounts in the cloud.  In 2009 we expect to see substantial gains as our platform is adopted by thousands of businesses developing applications on popular SaaS ecosystems like Serena.

In 2009 we will be releasing the first of several Mobile Productivity applications, including an iPhone Conferencing application based on Jaduka’s Conferencing API.  Just like our Web-based Conferencing solution, the new iPhone Conferencing application will allow users to start and manage conference calls from the palm of your hand.  Whether you need to connect to 3 people or 50 people at once, this application will make it easy.

It’s frictionless solutions like those offered by NetworkIP and Jaduka that are connecting people, improving business, increasing efficiency, and delivering significant value and costs savings to businesses. We look forward to 2009 with enthusiasm and vigor.
 
Brian Kirk
VP Business Development
NetworkIP & Jaduka

Why All The Hype With Cloud Computing?

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

Believe it or not, I like Wiki’s definition of Cloud Computing the best. Wiki defines Cloud Computing as a general concept that incorporates Software as a Service (SaaS), Data as a Service (DaaS), Web 2.0 & other recent, well-known technology trends, in which the common theme is reliance on the Internet for satisfying the computing needs of the users.

The best example of Cloud Computing that comes to mind & the ones I use most often are Google’s Mail, Talk, & Doc Applications. Why do I use these applications instead of similar applications already installed on my PC? The answer is simple, these Cloud Computing tools allow me to access my e-mail, message with colleagues, & edit documents, spreadsheets, & presentations regardless of the PC I’m using & the city/state/country I am in. Simple said, they offer me a convenient solution to communicate & work that doesn’t involve me taking my PC everywhere that I go.

When Amazon officially released their Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) earlier this year many companies (especially start-up companies that had yet to invest millions of dollars into their IT infrastructure) jumped on board. EC2 offered far more than a hosting solution. EC2 gave companies & software developers access to all the computing power they needed to run their applications at a cost far below what it would cost to procure & maintain the computing power on premise. To note, EC2 is just another piece of Amazon’s Web Services (AWS) offering.

Even with Google & Amazon’s play in the cloud, few were treating Cloud Computing as a mainstream approach to IT. Following Microsoft’s announcement of Azure, its long-anticipated Cloud Computing strategy, earlier this week at their Professional Development Conference I believe that Cloud Computing will become more mainstream. While many reports from Microsoft’s conference suggested that the news largely unfazed show attendees; I think this news will rattle the cages of Google, Amazon, & will awake the “regular” PC users who will think that it is cool that they can now work on their Word documents for work at home without having to take their work PC home.

Microsoft’s dominance in productivity software — Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, & Excel — remains strong, with market share based on revenue of at least 95%, according to data released in late 2007 by research firm International Data Corporation. Google Docs & Spreadsheets & even OpenOffice, which is an open source suite of tools that users can download for free, will continue to chip away at Microsoft’s market share, but the reality is that they still have a very long way to go before Microsoft will become scared. With Microsoft now making their Office suite more accessible, they are positioning themselves to maintain control of their existing user base that may otherwise eventually migrate to online tools because of their convenience factor.

Along with the online convenience factor I think this move to Cloud Computing also shows Microsoft’s realization that more users are beginning to user their mobile phone to write & edit documents, spreadsheets, & presentations. When doing such work from a mobile phone it makes more since for a user to manage their files in the cloud & use software that is also accessible to them in the cloud. Just this Monday, the Wall Street Journal wrote an article about how the mobile phone looks to be replacing the laptop. There is so much truth to this article & Cloud Computing is going to make this shift to mobile even easier for the consumer.

The hype about Cloud Computing is this. Businesses will turn to the Cloud mostly because the costs & resources to manage a large IT infrastructure far exceed the costs to make use of the Cloud. Software developers will turn to the Cloud because they can quickly obtain the environment needed to develop & deliver their applications. The “regular” PC users will turn to the Cloud for applications because of convenience & because the Cloud supports their applications for use on their mobile phone.

At NetworkIP & Jaduka we will continue to support the advancement of Cloud Computing by making both our telephony infrastructure & transaction processing engine available to the masses.

Brian Kirk
VP Business Development
NetworkIP & Jaduka

Accelerating Business Value with SaaS

Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Today & tomorrow Pat Murphy, VP of Business Development at Jaduka, & I will attend IBM’s Accelerating Business Value Conference in Palisades, New York. The focus of this conference is to bring together business executives, subject matter experts, & Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) in an effort to collaborate on making alternative delivery models available for software solutions through IBM’s Blue Business Platform (BPP).

As reported by IBM, the tides of innovation are driving radical changes in the software market. Alternative delivery models are opening up choices for line of business executives & providing new market opportunity for software vendors. Analyst predictions include:

- By 2012, 70% or more of businesses with greater than 100 employees will have deployed at least one Software as a Service (SaaS) application. - Saugatuck Technology, May 2008
- The Cloud opportunity is potentially $95 billion, or roughly 12%, of the total worldwide software market, within five years - Merrill Lynch, May 2008

Just as Pat discussed in a recent blog post, NetworkIP & Jaduka have been doing Software as a Service (SaaS) for many years. In fact, we are doing SasS 20 million times a month & that number continues to increase. Enterprises are quickly realizing the many pros of SaaS which include: affordability, immediate ROI, subscription pricing, quick deployment times, & the elimination of hardware &/or IT maintenance costs.

Going forward we plan to work more closely with ecosystems such as IBM’s Blue Business Platform in an effort to enable more companies to easily leverage the power & cost-savings that Jaduka & NetworkIP’s voice & transaction services software offer.

Brian Kirk
VP Business Development
NetworkIP & Jaduka