ECM market in Asia

Tony Byrne recently noted how CMS vendors are offshoring more development work. IDC also in its report observed that India is going to be a big market for content management.

There’s another trend because of which all these CMS vendors are rushing to countries like India. There are more than 1 billion people and hence there’s a huge government machinery, much of which is still not IT enabled. These include railways, airlines, hospitals, press, banks and a lot of other government organizations. This means huge (and I really mean HUGE) amount of paper based transactions. Even if 1% of them decide to go for reducing this paper based work, it will be a big ECM (especially, document and imaging) opportunity.
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How to write good RFPs and RFIs

Alan Pelz-Sharpe has written a nice article on how to write better RFIs. It’s a good article and I wish I could send the link to all our clients :). Alan gives good advice on best practices for writing better RFIs. In one of the sections, he explains “How Not to Build a Shortlist” of vendors. I’d like to add one more point to that list. A lot of vendors take the help of SIs to draft the RFP (or an RFI) and then that particular SI is automatically on the shortlist. I don’t think that’s a very smart idea.

Also, customers should very clearly mention things like “No answer should be larger than 10 lines” or the “total size of the response should not be more than 10 pages”. Continue reading “How to write good RFPs and RFIs”

Creating XLS and Docs on the Web

Biggies like Microsoft and Google are fighting each other to take leadership in providing services on the web. There are news that Google will provide Office like features along with SUN using Sun’s office suite. Microsoft is also launching similar services thru windows live. However, there are quite a few smaller players out there who are providing similar services. Users can create documents and excel sheets, share them with others and collaborate.
Here’s an example of excel sheet that I created using the service at Num Sum.

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Open Source as a bridge between commercial products

I’ve come across this scenario multiple times. A company C1 merges with another company C2. C1’s corporate standard is CMS1 and C2’s is CMS2. Because of the merger, C1 has to eventually move its systems to CMS2. However, during the transition phase, which could be as long as 18 to 24 months, it is very expensive for them to maintain CMS1.
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World Usability Day

November 3 is World Usability Day.
Portal and Content Management products are not known for being user friendly. However, I think more and more companies have begun to understand the benefits of usabilty and user centric design practices.
We’ve also recently started a group to spread awareness about usability and to institutionalize good usability practices across all the projects that we do.

If you want to know how to spread awareness about usability, here’s the link.