Big, expensive and L-O-N-G

I just read a good article on Web 2.0 from Business Week: Web 2.0 Has Corporate America Spinning Despite the title, it felt clear on advantages, and not sensationalized. I thought this paragraph under the "More Flexible" heading really hit the nail on the head as to what we are trying to do with QuickBase.

Corporations also are balking at installing big, multimillion dollar software programs that can take years to roll out — and then aren’t flexible enough to adapt to new business needs. "They’re clunky and awkward and don’t encourage participation," grumbles Dion Hinchcliffe, chief technology officer of Washington, D.C. tech consultant Sphere of Influence.

That’s why companies are warming to the idea of opening their information-technology systems to do-it-yourselfers.

It made me think… Home Depot is the Do-It-Yourselfers Warehouse. They staff with special folks with applicable experience and helpful attitudes. Our Application Specialists, who work with prospects during trial, and our Customer Advocates, who work with customers, were all chosen based on this kind of mix… applicable experience and helpful attitudes. And, we have a "teach to fish" approach to our work with prospects and clients. So, my question to you… what else can we do to make this type of DIY attractive to you, your colleagues and your company? Is that a good path? Are there other mental models we should consider?

And cheers to you all who have made it happen. I’m constantly hearing stories from you about…

  • "Our department was trying to get a bug tracking system rolled out for two months. I got annoyed with the complaints and built what we needed in 20 minutes over the weekend. Everyone loves it."
  • "I introduced someone to QuickBase, built and app, and trained her all in one hour."
  • "Our intern built an app today. With no training from any of us."

Not a big, expensive or L-O-N-G to be found.

As always, thanks for any thoughts or suggestions you have on this post!

  • blogMidtown

    1. The toughest thing is sneaking past IT/Security. I’ve worked in marketing at two Fortune 100 companies and QB was ideal for some project management and collaboration. Company 1 just wouldn’t consider the solution. I’m still banging on the door at Company 2 to just do a trial

    2. I’m surprised how little momentum or PR QB seems to have. I never hear about QuickBase in articles about Web 2.0. But QB is the ultimate Web 2.0 game changer that nobody knows about.

    Know everyone is talking about Google Spreadsheets which is fine but QB should be talked about in the same breath.

    Seems like Intuit could be more proactive about saying “Hey, we handle a bazillion tax returns and all sorts of sensitive information with absolute security. You can trust QB to be the same for your corporate data.”

    [Reply]

  • blogMidtown

    1. The toughest thing is sneaking past IT/Security. I’ve worked in marketing at two Fortune 100 companies and QB was ideal for some project management and collaboration. Company 1 just wouldn’t consider the solution. I’m still banging on the door at Company 2 to just do a trial

    2. I’m surprised how little momentum or PR QB seems to have. I never hear about QuickBase in articles about Web 2.0. But QB is the ultimate Web 2.0 game changer that nobody knows about.

    Know everyone is talking about Google Spreadsheets which is fine but QB should be talked about in the same breath.

    Seems like Intuit could be more proactive about saying “Hey, we handle a bazillion tax returns and all sorts of sensitive information with absolute security. You can trust QB to be the same for your corporate data.”

    [Reply]

  • Dave Sunderhaft

    “1. The toughest thing is sneaking past IT/Security. I’ve worked in marketing at two Fortune 100 companies and QB was ideal for some project management and collaboration. Company 1 just wouldn’t consider the solution. I’m still banging on the door at Company 2 to just do a trial”

    This has been my experience as well. It would be great if Quickbase could be bought as a packaged licensed solution and intalled behind a company’s firewall. There is no doubt that Quickbase is the most superior web 2.0/end-user application development framework out there. It would be even better if Quickbase were something that could be downloaded, installed and run on a local environment without a big, expensive and long implementation…somewhat like the Rails install and gems update process but less complicated for non programmers.

    [Reply]

  • Dave Sunderhaft

    “1. The toughest thing is sneaking past IT/Security. I’ve worked in marketing at two Fortune 100 companies and QB was ideal for some project management and collaboration. Company 1 just wouldn’t consider the solution. I’m still banging on the door at Company 2 to just do a trial”

    This has been my experience as well. It would be great if Quickbase could be bought as a packaged licensed solution and intalled behind a company’s firewall. There is no doubt that Quickbase is the most superior web 2.0/end-user application development framework out there. It would be even better if Quickbase were something that could be downloaded, installed and run on a local environment without a big, expensive and long implementation…somewhat like the Rails install and gems update process but less complicated for non programmers.

    [Reply]