Posted by: Mathu Nganga
BPOS, Google, Google Apps, IBM, Microsoft, Salesforce
Its Official its an all out Cloud War, all the major players are now going for the kill introducing their versions of SAAS (Software as a service) IBM, Google and now Microsoft. Microsoft has finally come out and launched its Microsoft BPOS (Business productivity Online Standard Suite), making it an industry to watch as they expand and start selling it outside the US, soon we hope.
You cannot talk about SAAS and fail to mention where it all started with Salesforce(CRM), a group of former Oracle execs who started a revolution, built an online product and sold it off on the internet. If you have been in the corporate world long enough you will now know that its not a cheap endeavor implementing a Customer Relationship Management system, this is usually occasioned by complexity in setting it up and along with all the integration that needs to be done. For large organizations with serious IT Budgets this is usually the last item they implement due to complexity in different information and data feeds it needs to take up not to mention need to do a SOA (Software Oriented Architecture) – information and data bus.
Well the thing about Salesforce software model is it made it easy for organizations to build their CRM data, not caring about the traditional requirements like scaling hardware, database sizes, capacity planing, disaster recovery, all was outsourced. All an organization needs to think off is number of users that are going to utilize this, training and change management- things that really matter in a project. Making the largest corporates to the smallest medium enterprise play in a common ground and the CRM seized to be a strategic business system and moved into a peripheral system that any organization could have.
A couple of years later 10 years to be exact and salesforce had a winner on their hands bringing in 1 billions dollars in sales revenue. This can be a major dent in the industry to all those large CRM players like Oracle and Microsoft and they would need to protect their markets.
Naturally we all adapt or get extinct, so if you can’t beat them join them. With Google going into office productivity with Google Apps and making it a utility item, meaning organizations do not have to spend extra on Hardware, Administration time, Disaster recovery the rest are now towing the line. IBM launched its lotus live in 2009 and Microsoft this year launched its Microsoft BPOS, with the only organization really making any returns worth writing home about being Salesforce we are yet to see how viable this business will get and the future looks promising.