Beautiful example on why Google is not about enterprise and cloud mail!

Google made a great example on why the company should stick to making the world best search engine online; the credit they deserve.

But they should stay away from corporate business application; why? Read the resent Migration Whitepaper and pay attention to details within the paper – http://static.googleusercontent.com/external_content/untrusted_dlcp/www.google.com/en//support/enterprise/static/gapps/docs/admin/en/gapps_exchange_migration/1.0/gamme_admin.pdf;

  • On the pages 23-25 the list pretty much shows you what cannot be migrated, instead of what can and should be migrated.
  • Being on the subject of what should; let us look more on the details again.
    • Public folders are a nay. Why? Google doesn’t support it; so enterprise sharing of e-mail lists and e-mails, incoming group mailboxes are in the Google world supposed to be the “docs place”. For you corporate junkies with 728 applications installed – you just got another app to manage and explore –and no; Google Docs does not support multiple group boxes.
    • Messages larger than 25 Mb. Cause? Read the whitepaper; Google simply does not work with big emails. Are you a layer, architecture, engineer or simply just an e-mail lover; split up all your e-mail and increase the items of your inbox, rather than at simple overview and a mail on your desired size. And DON’T comment on the term; “you don’t need big e-mails”. It’s 2010; I as a consumer and user specify what I need, not the vendor… it’s a new game play. And yes; migrating to Google will make some (you won’t get told which) e-mail disappear.
    • Executables in compressed files. Hmmm… Google does constrain on content; not on location of it.
    • Importance levels. Yes I also hate Jimmy from finance as all his e-mail are VERY IMPORTANT. But, sometimes when a n angry customer needs to confront the reality and make his voice heard (try e-mailing Google Support for instance), importance will put focus on the reader. Global Research Group makes clear in the 2008 report on e-mail usage; that 44% of all users use importance marks. Google, please recap.
    • Category definitions? COME ON!! If you are a heavy user of e-mail (corporate customer), you probably filter and leverage these categories all the time to make the day more easy and flux. Xobni quoted to hate the features of Outlook; as they would love to have made it available.
    •  Calendar attachments. Fair enough, can’t seem to find a reason for it. But again… I had the opportunity before (never go down of past…)
    • Follow-up, flags and reminder. Again not support; so migrating away just made all Personal Assistants (PA’s), secretaries or Information Worker more stressed or worried.

I love a lot of Google applications. I believe the company is the most vigilant and innovative vendor to date;  but I had expected Google to present a more corporate solution than a SOHO wanna-be e-mail platform. Migrating to Google from Exchange is simply a mistake; price does not compare and features are less understandable. Stick to Exchange, let Google innovate on the other GREAT apps.

Barriers of adopting new IT solutions

Yesterday I posted a blog on the resent changes from Berlinske Medier; 2.500 people to consume Google Mail. Many readers have posted which barriers and areas of change I was thinking of, as “SaaS is all about consuming IT within a browser, and just works on-demand”. While this is true, there are significant needs for mid- and enterprise companies to consider:

  • Consolidating of Data. Today’s your data are stored on-premise in your own database, tomorrow you will have to fit these data into your cloud solution. Although many vendors today offer easy and simple transaction models for data to traverse from on-premise to online; you will still need to control that project and consider the risks of loosing valuable data.
  • Education and organizational implementation. Education and implementation of new IT services are the most forgot area of interest when doing IT project. But this is in fact the only valuable driver to doing the change of IT; if no education if offered, no one will use the IT service and you lost your investment. Still mass-education and class-room speakers can do a lot; there will be a period of knowledge built up, you just do not lose – even if it is SaaS.
  • Interface Recognition. We all feel compelled to leverage known user experience and in fact; SaaS and ISV vendors have invested billions in making UX/UI better and easier to understand. If I ask you to cut/copy/paste something, you will know the icons to look for. Changing these interfaces may be easy for IT friendly personnel, but for the bi-daily IT user, where IT is just a tool; it may not be very easy. Microsoft made a huge mistake to introduce the ribbon bar in Office as quick as they did. Changes like these shall be introduced on a simple and quietly way.
  • Support and organization interface. The shift in changing interfaces for the users, are the same changes IT support has to implement when starting to support new tools and services. This project is huge – VERY huge. How does a support user support Google Mails problems? Will that IT support user just be an e-mail router between the organization and Google; or will the support user in fact be able to solve issues on demand?
  • Corporate control and policies. Quick and dirty SaaS solutions lack one big area; support for enterprise and policy based control. This is why Microsoft Exchange was hard for hosters to manage; but why mid- and enterprise organizations love the platform. Policies and security are enforced from a central point. Almost every solution build for SaaS from new ISVs lack this – I am compelled to ask why, but know the answer. Consider how the organization will change security and managed rules and policies. Many changes, many interfaces, many systems that does not built on the safe standards and integration will result in drastic and unbearable cost.

There are many many more things to consider, but basically look at the business roles you are trying to support and map cost to these roles. You will be amazed how many $$ you can save on this.

Danish Municipality Chooses Cloud CRM

Take how doubt – public sector and enterprise companies are ready to move key sensitive data into the cloud. Danish municipality Århus, choose to selective outsource their management systems for child- and membershipshandling (CRM changed to fit aka. xRM) of somewhat 14.000 employees onto a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution.

Reasons where the following:

  • The solution fit their need in functionality…
  • Price was relative small and easy to budget…
  • The traditional choice was overruled by the need to functionality for less money…
  • The board to select was not religious but pragmatic…
  • No licenses, no subscription advantage – “just use it”…
  • The system can handle all activities from within the core…

Choice was a SaaS webdriven solution and clarifies that unforseen opportunities is just in the market for ondemand saas solutions 🙂