I’m excited to share this guest post from Adam Storch, VP of Business Solutions from Micro Strategies (MSI), a Strategic System Integrator for Alfresco with the experience of delivering multiple solutions using Alfresco Digital Business platform. Adam discusses an example solution that can be quickly deployed in the cloud using Alfresco – AWS Quick Start and leverages Alfresco’s open-source architecture to easily integrate with MS Outlook and Office.
When working with clients for over 25 years you are presented with a LARGE number of business problems as well as very creative and colorful ways people describe those problems. Based on the client’s level of frustration, the amount of “colorfulness” used to describe what they need can make it very interesting to try and help them.
If I boil down the needs for most clients coming to us with a business problem, it’s about how do I let my users experience a Content Services solution and not just see demonstrations, PowerPoints and 8×10 glossy photos? While video is king and yes we have over 40 Alfresco solution videos on our website, you can’t really duplicate hands on experience through video.
The DocsNow solution using Alfresco Content Services sitting on top of AWS allows clients to provide their users with a robust solution for interacting with documents through their Browser, Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Office, and this complete solution can be delivered in just a few days.
Is It Magic?
It’s not magic, although after seeing what my development team can do I wonder if they spent some time with David Blaine or David Copperfield. It’s about pulling together the Alfresco Quick Start on AWS, the solution components that Micro Strategies has put together over the years and considerable focus on devising a solid deployment strategy to the cloud.
Alfresco’s Outlook Integration – Tagging metadata while saving an e-mail with attachments
Are you still with me? Because we have a video demonstration (you did not see this coming?) to give you a preview of the user experience (http://www.microstrat.com/docs-now), a video demonstration and how you can get started.
MSI Office Integration – Opening a PDF from a Favorite folder while inside MS-Word
Keep It Simple … For Your Users
The most import thing to keep in mind for this solution is allowing users to do their jobs without thinking about a new interface. Allow them to work with their emails and do everything they need to do with a content repository. Make it possible for them to search for a document while in MS-Word and open up any office or PDF document from any MS-Office application or Acrobat. This is a dream that can be realized! Too dramatic? Okay, but we need to allow users to do what they need to do and not think about applications, formats and other topics not germane to the user accomplishing their objective.
We as solution providers need to keep in mind we have one objective and that is to make our user’s jobs easier. We may not make them perfect, perhaps looking for a high five at the end of the day from them might be pushing our luck. But, if we can make it easier for them to do their job and minimize stress for them… Then mission accomplished.
I realize DocsNow is not the greatest thing since sliced bread, but it allows users and clients to touch and feel a Content Services solution quickly and that will get them to the solution that will make their jobs easier. Thanks for reading! The bread comment made me hungry, so I’m going to grab lunch.