Part 2: Technical Support Website Win-Win Opportunity

Inspired by the kickoff and the book “What would Google do?” I have some ideas on what we could do if we would really try to reinvent ourselves. So here is the second of a series of columns.

Part 2: Technical Support Website Win-Win Opportunity

This week I have been looking at technical support websites of software vendors to see what functionality such a website ideally should have. Then I realised that we do not want to build such website ourselves. Having a good website is essential for us, but building it costs time and takes away focus from our core activity: building the Uniface product.
Of course Compuware is not the only company that faces this dilemma. Every company that makes software faces the same situation. This includes the companies that build software with Uniface, and sell that software. We call them Value Added Resellers (VAR’s) and they are close to our hart. Our VAR’s want to concentrate on delivering business functionality to their customers too, and do not want to get distracted by building support websites either.
So surely someone must have come up with the idea to make a standard support website that you can use in a SAAS model, or buy and run on your own infrastructure? Maybe someone did but I couldn’t find one on the internet.
This creates opportunities:
  • The company that accepts the challenge to build an excellent technical support website in Uniface turns that cost centre into a profit centre by selling it to other companies. The website becomes part of their core business: making and selling software.
  • The companies that buy this excellent support website do no longer have to spend energy in designing, building and maintaining it. This makes it possible for them to concentrate on their core business: making and selling software.
  • As it would be built in Uniface it could be a perfect demo for what you can do with Uniface. It should be Web 2.0 and RIA etc, etc.
  • While I don’t see the actual website as a good open source project, it might be interesting to gather the requirements for it as an open project. This means that potential customers get a say in what is going to be built, and the potential supplier knows what he has to build in order to sell it.
Stop dreaming and let Uniface rock IT !
Theo Neeskens
Solution Architect
Uniface Solutions
Compuware B.V.
Hoogoorddreef 60, P.O. Box 23199
1100 DR Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Tel.: +31 (0)20 – 311 88 05 Fax: +31 (0)20 – 311 88 01
Mobile +31 (0)6 50 68 55 04

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