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Thoughts on what businesses actually need from the Cloud, not what vendors wish they needed.

Chris Bliss

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Top Stories by Chris Bliss

Listen: I know this post is strange. As a consultant, it’s strange to broadcast to the world that “Hey, you probably don’t need us.” Counterproductive, right? And before I get a call from my higher-ups, I should quickly add a caveat: most businesses don’t need software consulting in its current form. Here’s what I mean. Type “software consultant” into Google and see what comes up. You’ll likely find pages of software resellers, all primed and keyword optimized to sell you crap software. Most of these consultants base their business model off licensing fees and retainers. They get the fees from selling their partner’s software (*AHEM* Microsoft and Salesforce *AHEM*), and they sign clients up on multi-year support contracts. Thing is, it’s true. Most small and medium-sized businesses don’t need software consulting anymore. Now, the reseller model worked fine 20 year... (more)

Finally, a 21st Century Customer Service Solution: Our A+ Review of Zendesk

20th century customer service consisted of packed call centers, phones ringing off the hook, and large, convoluted databases of information to manage a never-ending stream of support requests. Cloud computing, and the introduction of powerful, business-specific software solutions, has changed that. There are hundreds of systems out there for handling contact management (CRM), project management, and sales workflows: likewise, there are more than a couple systems built for customer service. The best of the bunch is Zendesk, and we are psyched to award it an A+ and our seal of appr... (more)

Gamification and Business Software – Introducing RedCritter

Hey, software junkies… how do you feel about gamification? The evolution of business software, specifically SaaS, continues to spark new, innovative, and powerful tools for business owners to optimize how their employees use, and gain from, the systems that are in place. One company that is making waves in the business software gamification space is RedCritter, a Texas-based software company that has already integrated with several big hitters in the SaaS space, notably Zendesk and Salesforce, to enable its clients to track, monitor, apply rewards and badges, and actively monito... (more)

Software Implementations and the Sunk Cost Fallacy

Let’s say you buy nonrefundable, nontransferable tickets to see the Superbowl. In economics, that’s a “sunk cost” – an irretrievable past expenditure. Now say the Superbowl comes and you feel sick. Really sick. You’re convinced that going will be less fun than staying at home – but because you bought the tickets, you go anyways (and have a terrible time, especially if you’re a Broncos fan). “Sunk cost” – get it? Game theorists call this self-defeating behavior the “Concorde fallacy,” after the ill-advised Concorde plane, which operated for decades despite never making (or bein... (more)

No Tecknolegy: Five Costs of Inaction, or Why Cloud Computing Makes Sense

It’s easy to always say no. Your systems function, the processes are clear, it works. Why invest in cloud computing if nothing is broken? What’s wrong with inaction? We hear that sentiment all the time and it’s easily understood. Business owners are risk adverse and they don’t want to fall for short-term fads, especially with the backbone of their business (IT). That’s commendable. Unfortunately, when a game changer like cloud computing comes along, undue conservatism becomes increasingly costly. Here’s why. 1. When you overlook meaningful trends you then lend a strong competiti... (more)