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10 Questions You Need to Ask a Collaboration Vendor

10 Questions You Need to Ask a Collaboration Vendor

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Published by Krish
This whitepaper will help customers of collaboration software to find the product that is best suited for today's agile needs.
This whitepaper will help customers of collaboration software to find the product that is best suited for today's agile needs.

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Published by: Krish on Jan 27, 2010
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01/26/2010

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Before You Buy!
10 Questions You Need To Ask A Collaboration Vendor 
 
 Beore You Buy! 10 Questions You Need To Ask A Collaboration Vendor 1©
Diversity Limited, 2010 Non-commercial reuse with attribution permitted
Table of Contents
Is your product extensible to meet thechanging face of the collaboration landscape?
Quick Take
Tis is quite possibly the most important question, above allothers, which you should ask collaboration vendors beingevaluated. Te answer will quickly identiy a purpose-builtsolution, or a legacy one that has been retrot to be quickly brought to market to capitalize on a growing market opportunity,designed without the customer in mind. Te objective is todetermine whether or not the solution you are evaluating iscapable o growing with your business – easily integratingwith new applications and data sources, providing an ease o administration to create new mechanisms (portals, mash-ups,dashboards, project sites, etc.) to drive a wider adoption o collaboration internally.
Why it’s So Important 
In an era when customer demands change as quickly as theintroduction o new technologies, the needs o an enterprisehas become very uid. Tis act requires that any product beingconsidered must include absolute extensibility, so that it adaptsto match the organization’s unctional needs. raditionally,
 Executive Summary
In just the last ew years, the enterprise collaboration sotware market has become one o the mostcrowded areas in I. It seems as though new vendors are appearing on a weekly basis while traditionalsotware vendors are working everishly to retrot their legacy oerings by introducing new collaborationadd-ons. Further clouding (pun intended) the issue are the various delivery models available to customerstoday – on-premise, on-demand and cloud-based options are available. Tis combination o a multitudeo vendors and delivery models has created a conusing landscape, where messaging collision has becomethe rule, not the exception. Tis primer is intended to help those organizations researching enterprisecollaboration by arming them with the most important questions to ask the collaboration vendors they are evaluating, in hopes o helping them make buying decisions based on empirical evidence, rather thanashy positioning and messaging.
 
 Beore You Buy! 10 Questions You Need To Ask A Collaboration Vendor 2©
Diversity Limited, 2010 Non-commercial reuse with attribution permitted
sotware vendors tend to overlook extensibility o a productwhile ocusing on the current day needs. Moreover, the mostinnovative collaboration products have put extensibility in thehands o less technical users by allowing them to create datamashups, automation o reporting, workow, etc., without any kind o programming background. Tis not only ensures a level o “uture proong”, but also osters widespread adoption beyond thetraditional technical user base.Te extensibility requirement is not justimportant or keeping up with the changesin unctional requirements, it is also very important or customization and integrationpurposes. No two businesses are the sameand needs vary based on the end-user andcustomer requirements. Tis demandsan advanced level o customization o theproduct in question and it can only beachieved through an extensible product and/or platorm. oday’s enterprise ecosystem –the set o applications and services that drivethe business – are comprised o a healthy mixo both on-premise and on-demand sotware.Tis landscape requires integration o legacy applications, as wellas with web-driven applications. Most o these legacy applicationswere not designed with the Internet, much less collaboration inmind; this will be discussed in more detail later. Such integrationsneed to be easy to administer and should be capable o beingexecuted without any additional services cost. Tis calls or theproduct and/or platorm to not only be extensible but also oera rich user experience and interace, which allows users withoutprogramming skills to complete integrations.Tere are also some technical nuances that should be consideredas well. For collaboration specically, where inormation can bein many transitional states, collaborative solutions which leverageRESul implementations have proven to be to have distinct
Te extensibility requirement is not  just important or keeping up with thechanges in unctional requirements, it isalso very important or customizationand integration purposes.
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