Categories
saaspulse

Status of private beta

I’m using this post to update on the beta status of our service at SaaSPulse.

In the past few weeks, Omer and I were demoing our product to prospective customers and people in the industry which we value their opinion. We’ve set up a demo account on our service, which is basically our beta system with dummy data of a fictions IT Service Management SaaS company named GoodService.com.

We’ve created this demo for two reasons: To encourage feedback, people prefer to look at live systems and not just presentations, and to get attention of potential customers to participate in our private beta, so we gain additional valuable feedback.

The good news, is that most of the SaaS businesses which we’ve demoed to would like to start using the service based on it’s current feature set. Obviously these are very good signs for us. So we’re working extremely hard to be able to ramp up more customers than we initially anticipated (as a side note, I’m really glad we’ve chosen Amazon Web Services for our infrastructure, this way it’s much simpler for us to scale faster).

With the increased capacity we are able to add more business to our service every week. If you’re interested, just let us know here.

We’re also about to setup a company blog to report update statuses more frequently, so please be sure to take a look in few days.

Categories
saaspulse

Customer 360 at SaaSPulse

These are exciting times at SaaSPulse. We’re ramping up our service, and adding more customers every week. We’re getting great feedback from our users and incorporating this feedback back into our service, thus increasing our customer’s satisfaction.

We focus on our velocity! Yes, it’s important for a startup to move fast and in the right direction. We are making sure we release new features and improvements few times every week. We collect the feedback directly from our customers and implement those changes back into the product. That’s not easy, and not having bi-weekly or monthly release cycles can take it’s tolls from the team, however, it’s exciting to see our service morph into something which is exactly what customers *need*.

Please note that I’m using the term ‘customer need’ and not what customer’s want. The greatest challenge in delivering products to market is to build constructive dialog with the customers. The challenge is even greater when customers are web users in the SaaS model for example where, in most cases, no direct communication is possible. The fact that it’s difficult to gain customer feedback doesn’t relief product/service business owners from striving to highly-effective and efficient communication with their customers.

Our approach to address customer communication challenges is be what we call ‘Customer 360’. Track, analyze and act-on all customer interaction channels with our service. Customer 360, is a customer centric approach for web business and services to better understand their customer by observing all the channels of interaction of named customers with their web business/service. This is what we do, and with our service, this is what our customers do. The result are amazing!

Soon enough, as we incorporate more customer feedback into our system, we’ll be able to open our service with no limits. If you’re interested in hearing more, please drop by our web site and leave you contact details.

Categories
Random

iPad as a source of inspiration

I’m writing this blog using my new iPad. I bought the iPad to be part of our product’s development process and testing. To me, iPad is a source of inspiration on how excellent products should be made. What should be the engineering and the design considerations when building something new.

I guess that not many can create great products like Apple does, I’m not sure at all that I can, but I would like to try. I want me and my team to pay attention to the smallest details, while not loosing sight of the big picture. Make sure a product is as much as enjoyable as it is functional. The generation of functional only product is gone, there is a higher standard now.

Categories
Uncategorized

Cloud load testing

As a company which operates in the cloud space, we’re experimenting with building a product development company without any servers.

So far, we’re using various cloud services to run our business:

  • Google Applications – for mail, calendar and documents and our internal wiki
  • Beanstalkapp – as our subversion code repository
  • Balsamiq – as our online mockup service
  • Dropbox for file sharing and of course
  • Amazon EC2 as our deployment environment for testing and production

Now days, we’re looking for a good cloud load testing solution. I posted a question on Twitter. I thought others would be interested in my non-formal survey results as well:

  • http://www.keynote.com/
  • http://loadstorm.com/
  • http://www.cloud-intelligence.com/home
  • http://www.soasta.com/index.html
  • – many thanks to Yaron and Paul

    We haven’t tried any of these services yet, and I’ll happily update here on our experience and results.

    If you’re familiar with other online solutions, please add your comment as well.


    Categories
    Uncategorized

    Salesforce API and Axis2

    Here’s a useful tip for Java developers integrating with the SalesForce API.

    All Salesforce Java examples use Axis 1.3. If you’d like to work with Axis 2 stream, simply use the following switches on the WSDL2Java command line:

    wsdl2java -Eofv -g -uw -u -uri enterprise.wsdl

    This will save you a lot of time and frustration. To read the explanation, just have a look here

    Categories
    Uncategorized

    Spring Roo Initial User Experience

    I’ll start by saying that I admire what the Spring guys are aiming with Spring Roo. I really hope that this effort will be successful.

    The promise is great; up and running enterprise Java applications in minutes, however, after being burnt in the past, most developers still would like to keep sense of control over their code base.

    After watching the Google I/O keynote, where it was clear the Spring and GWT guys are working together, I wanted to spend 60 minutes on Roo and see how it goes.

    So, I went into the Roo website and followed the command line instructions. Documentation is great and also the command line behaves very well. Didn’t dive yet into the auto-generated code, but I have a good feeling that the guys at SpringSource knows what they are doing.

    after 5 minutes, the user experience is just great. And than came the maven piece…

    I finished creating the first project as described here, and followed the instruction:

    roo> perform tests

    And than waited for 16 minutes and 3 seconds while seeing screens like this one:

    I understand it’s not Roo, but maven behind the scenes, and that it was the first time maven was running on my laptop, hence the time it takes. However, I do expect to see much clearer messages about what’s going on, and why it takes so long…

    Categories
    software

    I Choose Cloud

    This is a great video created by the innovative guys at Box.net with several other CEOs of companies creating very inspiring cloud services.

    Categories
    saaspulse

    Looking to sublease office space (Israel)

    Update: It wasn’t long till we subleased space (24h!), we’re now happily sharing office space with OutBrain.

    We’re ramping up the SaaSPulse team , so we can’t work out of our homes anymore.

    We’re looking to sub-lease office space in the center of Israel. Preferably in Poleg or Herzelia. We need place for up to four people (until we move again). In addition we really care about a lot of sun light, and good office energy.

    If you’re connected to me on LinkedIn, you probably got my query, if not, than first, please do connect with me on LinkedIn ;), and if you happen to know of such vacancy, please drop me a line.

    Thanks – Guy

    Categories
    Random

    Leaving a mark…

    I was driving the CA-101 a month ago, and heard “My Girl” song by the temptations.

    Than it occurred to me, I told Omer, my partner, this is what we’re going to do differently in our  new company.

    In the same way this beautiful song moves me and many more people world wide, we’re going to make sure that our company is going to touch people similarly.

    How do we do this in high-tech and startup company, this is yet to be seen, specifically in enterprise software, but we sure going to try.

    In the mean time, enjoy this great song!

    Categories
    enterprise software

    Life in enterprise software

    TechCrunch is surprised to hear that there is life in enterprise software, You can watch the video and listen to what Marc Andreessen has to say on the subject. I agree with the general sentiment of the discussion. There is a lot of potential in enterprise software, specifically when applying modern approaches to eneterprise software.

    I’d like to emphasize a minor fact within this article: “Thousands of software-as-a-service and open source companies were started over the last decade to upend the category with cheaper, more flexible pay-as-you-go offerings that didn’t involve the multi-million-dollar installation costs of hardware and customization”

    I’ve been talking in the past few months with several industry leaders. Few don’t really see SaaS as a big market. I beg to differ. Time will tell who’s right, but thousands of companies playing in this arena sounds big to me. and this is just the beginning. In addition, it’s clear that many enterprise software companies who didn’t apply modern web delivery models will apply those sooner or later. In order to convince an enterprise to choose a best-of-breed product, it has to lower the barriers and allow ‘frictionless’ enterprise adoption strategies.

    I’m glad to hear reinforcement from someone like Marc.