Few would doubt that technology is set to be a huge enabler for small to medium sized businesses (SMEs) as most have been largely underserved until recent years. We are only now starting to see some more user-friendly enterprise software e.g. for accounting, CRM, communication (internal and external) etc, that help SMEs compete on almost a level playing field with larger enterprises (who have larger budgets).
Aaron Levie of Box.net makes some interesting points about the opportunities for enterprise software providers and business users. He stresses the importance of enterprise software developers removing the shroud of tech jargon and complexity around enterprise software and instead focusing on providing functional yet simple core products capable of being modified to specific business needs. Levie states:
There will always be a few really complex problems that require complex solutions. But for the vast majority (read: 95%) of use cases, simplicity will suffice. Where complexity is necessary – whether it’s to build a specific workflow, integration, or solution for a particular vertical – solve it through customization. Abstract the core areas of your product from the parts that can be modified by a developer or customer, making sure the core and default use is still simple. The best products in the world can do as much or as little as customers want without you having to think twice. The economic upside of this is obvious, of course, as you’ll now have a rich ecosystem of integrators, value-added resellers, and professional service firms that can participate in your success.
Did he say 95%….?!
We have already seen how superb consumer software such as Apple‘s iPhone or Google’s Android platform can be transformed by third party modifications and developments. What if we could apply the same principles to SME business software?
What business enterprise solutions are catching your attention?
- Building the Simple Enterprise (techcrunch.com)