Thursday, April 9, 2009

Mashups redefining business processes

Every non-IT executive would have at some point felt frustrated at not being able to access certain information and having to depend on the IT helpdesk. Business mashups aims to tackle such situations by being able to automate business processes. And that best part is that even a sales person will now be able to define the sales process be it a sales proposal generation and automate it.

It's (mashups) about RAD (Rapid Application Deployment) solutions, its about helping IT departments to be more agile and helping business to be more self sufficient and these are usual business processes simple business solutions. So with business mash ups you can easily automate processes. It helps IT to deliver applications faster and more efficiently.

The fundamental business benefit is that the user is taking a manual process which is error prone and time consuming and you are doing that without having to spend a lot of money on writing code on building solution, which is what IT departments generally do. So, ROI would definitely vary based on the kinds of business processes you are automating. Fundamentally the RoI lies in the fact that without having to write code and spend money on developing a solution you are rapidly automating a process where it used to be manual and you are saving lots of time and money.

Mashup On demand

While mashups by itself is not a new concept, going by the demand for on demand apps, we will shortly launch our mashup server – on demand, which can be accessed through the Internet. With this customers can download design software, design an application and load it back onto our mashup server.

Mashups help business analysts in IT to mashup applications, because end of the day, the business user doesn't care where the data lives. They just have a problem, they have a business problem, which is manual, error-prone and they like to automate it, streamline it and improve it and so that's exactly what we target. We help business users to use it so that they do not have to depend on IT and developers. So the sales ops person can create this application and put it on the on-premise server or we have this mash up server on the cloud and the customer can download the design software from the mashup server.

You could call it a mashup delivered as SaaS. We have a mashup server, which we serve on the cloud and this mashup composer, which is a client application which you can download something like iTunes.

The business user can now use this environment to define his business process. So when the user is ready to deploy it he can run that process they have to push it up to a server so that people can actually interact and like iTunes connects to Apple's server the mashup composer connects to our mashup on-demand server after registration based on a 'pay per month per user' model.

The end users of that process can use a standard browser and interact in the process connecting to our servers. Mashups can be used to design a number of processes and can be used across the enterprise be it sales people submitting a request for a discount, or the helpdesk for IT help or even a HR process. The user can start a process or interact with the process if its in their inbox to approve or review through a browser connecting to our servers.

However, not all are comfortable with SaaS and so we also support the on premise version. We will launched our new mashup server on-demand because we feel that is going to broaden our reach. Basically, it is two different deployment models and lot of companies are looking to SaaS as an alternative way because they can get up and running very quickly.

It may be a long time before companies completely run on SaaS, but its growing.


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