It’s been nearly a year since we launched the Business-Edition of FireScope Business Service Management, designed to make BSM accessible where it never was before – smaller, growing businesses. And if our rapidly expanding customer base wasn’t proof enough that this was a brilliant idea, the number of our competitors following our footsteps certainly is; Nimsoft being the latest, and only a year behind the times.
Unfortunately, just as many PC manufacturers have taken the wrong clues in trying to mirror Apple’s success, it seems that Business Service Management vendors trying to break into this market are missing key points.
The prevailing thought seems to be, slash your price point and dumb down the feature set, and you’re all set with an SMB solution. Someone’s obviously not listening to their customers.
We spent considerable time in discussions with our customers while designing FireScope BSM:BE, and consistently heard the same things:
1. My time is just as important as money – initial configuration, maintenance and post-deployment configuration of new assets and technologies shouldn’t eat up my time, or require me to bring in a consultant or hire a dedicated admin.
2. I know how I want to run my business; don’t make me change processes just to use a solution.
3. I’ve got stuff you’ve never heard of, so give me a path to monitor and manage them without custom programming.
4. Don’t nickel and dime me with add-ons or consultant time. It’s not the 90’s any more, don’t try to turn a $10k product into a $100k project.
5. Don’t add to my stress. I’ve got too much on my plate as it is.
The heart of the success of our Business-Edition isn’t the price point, it’s all the little stuff around it that the competition misses. It’s delivering the solution in a prebuilt virtual appliance, so all the customer has to do is power it on. Its embedding best practices and help through the solution to walk overworked users through complicated tasks easily, quickly. It’s offering a web-based administrative interface that can automate administrative tasks like updates and backups. It’s keeping things easy, straight-forward and avoiding complicated scripting languages or inventing our own rules language.
Granted, I just gave away our secret recipe, but I’m not worried. One of the advantages of not being a massive company is that by the time the competition catches up, we’ll be two or more innovations ahead.