Atlassian acquires Trello for $425M: Will It Remain Free?

As most acquisitions start out with the “ideal” that the product will remain pristine and nothing will change – it will be interesting to see if the acquisition of Trello by Atlassian will be the norm or the exception. From a business point of view Atlassian paid $425M, so they will want their investment to pay off.

What’s interesting in today’s world is that instead of putting a bunch of developers in a room to develop new software, companies like Atlassian, instead buy a company. This is truly an emerging strategy in product development and one that makes sense with respect to acquiring best of breed. We hope that Atlassian will keep its word and Trello will remain free. Proof is always in the pudding.

Often the story during the press release phase is that “The original folks are going to run it, not the new company!” “Things will stay the same.”

WhatsApp and Waze are both pretty good examples of high profile acquisitions. It’s generally unlikely that it will be the executive team from any start-up that ends up sticking around past whatever agreement they signed with buyer. There’s generally some “golden seatbelt” that requires the start-ups executives to stay for a particular period of time. And once that time is up, its not unpredictable that they leave that because they are “start-up” personalities – meaning they like the start-up phase and not so much the growth and maintenance or innovation phase of a company because their jobs will change and hence their interest.

It really takes four types of entrepreneurs/management to make a start-up successful. First the the start-up folks who like the beginning, ideas flowing, do a lot with a little, the adrenal of “can we do this?”

Second, to have a company grow, it takes people who are really good at R&D and growth strategies, which different often greatly from start-up strategies and tactics.

And third, there are the maintenance executives who are really good a making a company run like a well oiled machine; again very different type of personality traits are required for this.

The fourth stage is now required (it had not been as much a part of management theory in the past. But with technology changing so rapidly, innovation to stay relevant and on top requires people to look outside their comfort zone and understand what’s coming next and how can they innovate and transform their company.) Otherwise the company becomes a dinosaur and dies. We’ve seen plenty of that happening to the likes of Tower Records, Circuit City, etc..

screen-shot-2017-01-09-at-2-41-03-pm

We all have our beloved start-ups. And many of us have been part of start-ups. What’s true is that we all hope nothing will change. What is also true is that it takes a lot of effort to go beyond the start-up phase into the growth, maintenance and innovation phases. People get tired; they want their initial investment to pay off; and they truly like doing what they do best. And it may not be the other phases of what a company goes through. It’s not fair to ask people, however idealistic it is, to do things they don’t enjoy or are not good at.

Will Trello stay the same? Or will it change as many other acquisitions have, as they got bought or swolled up, and give into the reality of the phases of what it takes for an initial idea to grow into a company? Only time will tell.

@DrNatalie, VP and Principal Analyst, www.ConstellationResearch.com

Covering customer-facing applications and innovation

Share

Oracle Service Cloud Announces New Releases

Oracle Service Cloud announces new releases for enhanced functionality in Web Customer Service, Contact Center including the Agent Browser User Interface, Knowledge Advanced, Policy Automation, and the Oracle Service Cloud Platform. Included in he release is a new Internet of Things (IoT) Accelerator, which provides a bi-directional integration with Oracle IoT Cloud.

The integration helps customers seamlessly interface with IoT technology so that service events and alerts received from smart devices can be consumed, as well as appropriate action taken by agents, within the Oracle Service Cloud desktop. Field Service seems to be an area where IoT can easily provide true use cases that can quickly garner ROI. It will be interesting to see how vendors incorporate IoT in the customer experience. The Internet of Things (IoT) accelerator will allow internet enabled devices connectivity to Oracle Service Cloud. Accelerators are a collection of sample code, sample workflows, and best practices, documentation, and design guidance to assist customers with seamless updates or integrations with Oracle Service Cloud.Oracle Service Cloud Releases

Oracle Service Cloud also provided a sneak preview of Live Chat. What is the capability really about? Sneak preview allows chat agents to see what a customer is typing before they hit submit. Sneak Preview is designed to enhance agent productivity and bring value to the contact center by decreasing handle times. By allowing the agent to see what the customer is typing ahead of time they can begin to formulate an answer faster, which results in faster responses, and faster conversations. And Live Chat is now a fully supported channel; contacts are automatically matched and the contact and chat workspaces are integrated.

In addition, the release includes analytics performance enhancements with caching for frequent reporting and better notifications for report authors. Modern gauges are added to create much more intuitive and modern reports, allowing users to interpret data quicker, as well as new rendering options, to remove unnecessary components in reports, crisper rendering of charts, and a new modern layout theme. In addition, there is a new dashboard concept—specifically designed for that 5-second-glance overview for busy customer service leaders.

These at-a-glance infolets are available out-of-the-box and contain a number of single metric charts with real-time key performance indicators like open incidents by severity, SLA, First Contact Resolution, new incidents by channel, and so forth. Contact Center Directors can also schedule and send the infolet dashboard by email to key stakeholders at regular intervals. This is key as the more senior stakeholders are more involved, the more they begin to realize the importance of customer experience and customer service to the overall health, stability and revenue generation capabilities of their company.

In addition, the the agent browser UI has gone through a significant performance enhancement to support high interactivity and now supports a much broader range of analytics capabilities. The agent browser user interface is now a single version, meaning it is compatible with versions of Oracle Service Cloud all the way back to May 2015 and upgrades will now happen with zero downtime.  The UI theme has been updated for consistency across all Oracle Cloud portfolio applications. Knowledge authors can now use the Agent Browser User Interface to author and edit knowledge articles with a new HTML editor with HTML5 support.

As the race to provide the best customer experience continues, brands must choose between more single point solutions vs large system platforms. It will be interesting to see the choices of brands and how the customer experience evolves to meet the brand promise.

@DrNatalie Petouhoff, VP and Principal Analyst, Covering Customer-Facing Applications that Drive Awesome Customer Experiences

www.constellationr.com

Share

Congratulations to the Constellation Super Nova Award Winners in Customer Experience!

The reason we at Constellation Research created the SuperNova Awards is because we know advancing the adoption of disruptive technology is not easy. Technology adoption faces resistance from budget constraints, hurdles to adoption, and myopia. All the finalists here today have successfully implemented technologies that will lead their organizations into the future. These people have vision. These people are leaders. These people understand the value of disruptive technology. All of the SuperNova Award applications are on the Constellation website.

Today’s customer demands a personalized experience during every stage of the buying process. Customers demand to be treated like royalty before, during, and after purchase. Customers want this same level of service across social, mobile, and analog channelsFinalists in the Next Generation Customer Experience category understand today’s demanding customers. They have implemented technologies and programs to boost brand loyalty and customer engagement. The finalists for Next Generation Customer Experience:

  • Amihai Zeltzer from Stanley Healthcare
  • Martin Marcinczyk from Comcast
  • Murray Swartzberg from the ATP World Tour
  • Roshan Koonja from Constance Hotels and Resorts
  • Scott Strickland and Jim Flatt from Denon + Marantz Electronics.

And the winner of the SuperNova Award for Next Generation Customer Experience is…. Murray Swartzberg from the ATP World Tour! Murray and his team won the SuperNova Award for enhancing the tennis experience for fans and players.  The ATP partnered with Infosys to produce Game-Stats that are based on the real-time in-memory paradigm aligned with IIP Tooling & Apache Spark. The project revolutionized how tennis analysts and fans receive statistics about professional tennis players

Make sure to apply next year!

Congratulations to all the executives and their teams who are truly making a difference in creating great customer experiences.

@DrNatalie, VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research, Covering customer-facing applications that deliver excellent customer service and customer experience!

Share

One Big Step for Commerce, One Giant Step for Salesforce

Salesforce’s $2.8 billion acquisition of Demandware will serve as the company’s Commerce Cloud. Demandware and Salesforce have a series of joint customers. This acquisition will enable more e-commerce for Salesforce along with Salesforce’s customer relationship management tools. CEO’a are realizing the value of platforms vs. point solutions and the trend is going towards the vendors creating more holistic platforms that offer a continuous marketing, sales, service process. In truth, only companies separate those aspects of their companies into different departments. But customers don’t see a company as separate departments. So the departments really need to act as a whole and software as a platform can be the key to that.

The acquisition will grow the sales “funnel” for Salesforce. There is the possibility to expand the relationship with existing customers. So it gives Salesforce a new group of customers to upsell for the other services that it already offered, from marketing and online analytics through to back-office software for sales and other IT functions. Who is Demandware working with now? Some customers include Design Within Reach, Lands’ End, L’Oreal and Marks & Spencer.

With more and more people buying on their phone and online, commerce and e-commerce is more and more important. This is a smart move by Salesforce.

@DrNatalie Petouhoff, VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research

Covering customer-facing applications that make great customer experiences

Share

SuperNova Awards: The Premium Standard in Digital Disruption — Apply NOW!!

You now have a few more days to complete your SuperNova Awardapplication! The new deadline to apply for the only awards to honor leaders in disruptive technology is August 14, 2015.

All finalists of the SuperNova Awards are awarded one complimentary ticket to Constellation’s Connected Enterprise executive innovation summit.* The application takes only about five minutes to completeGather all the information about your disruptive technology project, and submit your application now!

Apply Here: https://www.constellationr.com/node/3137/apply

Revised timeline

  • August 7, 2015 August 14, 2015 last day for submissions.
  • September 2, 2015 finalists announced and invited to Connected Enterprise.
  • September 14, 2015 voting opens to the public
  • October 2, 2015 polls close
  • November 4, 2015 Winners announced, SuperNova Awards Gala Dinner at Connected Enterprise 

We’re searching for the rebels, catalysts, and innovators that are shaping the future of technology! If you led the implementation of a disruptive technology for your organization, we want to hear your story!

Complete the SuperNova Award application in 3 steps

  1. Create a Constellation account
  2. Gather the information required to complete your SuperNova Award application. Preview the application and download an application checklist here
  3. Submit your application before August 14, 2015. 

Apply Here: https://www.constellationr.com/node/3137/apply

*limit one per finalist. Transportation and lodging not included. 

@DrNatalie VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research

Share

2012 SuperNova Award Semifinalists #SNA12

Recently, I’ve been reading up on the 2012 SuperNova Award Semifinalists. Unfamiliar with the SuperNova Award? Here’s some quick information, taken from Constellation Research:

The SuperNova Awards celebrates champions of disruptive technology for a second year. Constellation’s all star cast of judges whittled down an applicant pool of over 120 hopefuls, and selected 60 exceptional semifinalists.  All semifinalists will receive one invitation to Connected Enterprise, Constellation’s premier innovation summit; a three-month subscription to Constellation’s Quark library;  and membership in Constellation’s research community.  Select semifinalists will also be invited to speak on best-practices panels at Connected Enterprise.

Constellation’s Principal Analyst and CEO, R “Ray” Wang noted, “The judges saw an increase in the quality and quantity of this year’s entries.  A common theme among the 2012 semifinalists –  defined ROI and metrics, best practices on how to transform an organization, and real calculated risk taking inside the organization.  These semi-finalists should be applauded for their courage in taking their organizations to the next level in a tumultuous business climate”.

If you’re familiar with my work, you know how I stress the importance of effective customer service for improving business, so I’ve decided to share with you 2 of the finalists and their companies up for the “Next Generation Customer Experience” award.

Jens Voigt, Vice President Customer Support, Western Europe, Kaspersky Lab

“Since most of our customers conduct their personal and professional business online, we knew we had to deliver an online self-service option to meet their needs.  To do this, in 2010, Kasperksy launched Lena, an intelligent virtual agent powered by VirtuOz.  Initially, the goal was to provide a 24/7 automated system that delivered a fast, personalized, contextual customer experience and free up support resources for more advanced, paid technical services.  However, with robust analytics capabities able to capture the voice of the customer, we soon realized that our customers were using Lena as the online equivalent of a tech-savvy sales representative.  So in November 2011, Kaspersky expanded Lena’s role to the sales function, which quickly garnered tremendous success.”

Kaspersky Lab is the world’s largest privately held vendor of endpoint protection solutions.  The company is ranked among the world’s top four vendors of security solutions for endpoint users.  Throughout its 15-year history Kaspersky Lab has remained an innovator in IT security and provides effective digital security solutions for consumers, SMBs, and Enterprises.  The company currently operates in almost 200 countries across the globe, providing protection for over 300 million users worldwide.  Learn more at www.kaspersky.com.

Dawn Wolfe, Sr. Digital Marketing Manager, Autodesk

“Due to the power and complexity of Autodesk’s software, a single user license can be a significant investment, which makes software trials a critical component in a customer’s purchasing decision. In fact, data showed that prospects were twice as likely to purchase Autodesk® products if they had used the software at least three times during a 30-day trial period. We incorporated Badgeville’s Game Mechanics into our 3ds Max® software trial experience to provide our prospects with a guided, more engaging experience through the full benefits and key differentiators of our products.”

Autodesk, Inc., is a leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software. Customers across the manufacturing, architecture, building, construction, and media and entertainment industries — including the last 17 Academy Award winners for Best Visual Effects — use Autodesk software to design, visualize and simulate their ideas. Since its introduction of AutoCAD software in 1982, Autodesk continues to develop a broad portfolio of state-of-the-art software for global markets. For additional information about Autodesk, visit www.autodesk.com.

To learn more about the other semifinalists, click here.

Learn. Share. Grow!
@DrNatalie L. Petouhoff

For more info on my work:
Ebook
:Social Media ROI

Social Media ROI YouTube Videos:
Video 1: Building the Business Case for Social Media
Video 2: How to Measure the ROI of Social Media

Video 3: How Social Media Benefits the Whole Company

Book on Monetizing Facebook: Like My Stuff: How To Monetize Your Facebook Fans

Let’s Connect here:
Twitter:
@drnatalie
LinkedIn: DrNataliePetouhoff
G+ : Google Plus posts

Enhanced by Zemanta
Share