As you know at CMS Watch we write critical product evaluations to help you avoid expensive procurement and deployment mistakes. We write reports that detail both the warts and merits of big vendors like EMC, Oracle, Xerox and IBM -- through to smaller specialist vendors like Hyland, Autonomy and Nuxeo. Readers of our reports often ask me "what did vendor x say when they read that!" The assumption, sometimes correct, is that vendors freak out on reading such criticism.
In an industry whereby most of the "independent analysts" are heavily dependent on revenues from the very firms they claim to be "independent" of, it's unusual to see truly critical research get published. So it becomes a surprise to both buyers and sellers when they read such criticism. In our reports we widely distribute the compliments and brickbats -- if something is truly terrible we will tell you.
But most of the time it is not a case of bad technology versus good technology. Rather it is a case of good fit versus bad fit: a product that could become an outstanding performer in a larger legal firm may make a terrible fit in a mid-sized manufacturing and ERP-centric environment. Hence we urge you the reader to study all the alternatives and balance them out, rather than look at one preferred vendor in isolation.
Speaking of isolation, the marketing groups of some vendors seem to operate in in a kind of vacuum. I guess it's part of the job for them to drink their own Kool Aid, but some of them seem to think it's part of their job to attack and stop any criticism of their product or company. At CMS Watch we're often on the receiving end of that wrath; that stinks sometimes, but so be it. Just as it is the vendor's job to wax lyrical about the joys of their product, so too is it ours to unearth the reality. If you want to get an insight into this particular dynamic, whether you're a curious end user or a vendor AR (Analyst Relations) person, check out the article I published today.
Evaluation Stream looks at... SharePoint's calendar and task integration with Outlook
"Instead think about SharePoint event lists like a calendar on your refrigerator. It's a place to post important events and general "public notices," but it in no way can it encourage participation, nor does it imply acceptance. With tasks, you get slightly better functionality, but again no reminders...."
Learn the real strengths and weaknesses of major vendors from around the world, in our evaluation research stream.
Tags: , Brand & Digital Asset Management, Component Content Management, Document Management (ECM), E-mail Archiving and Management, Enterprise Search, Portals & Content Integration, Web Analytics, Web Content & Experience Management, Marketplace at Large, Selecting Technology,
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Martin Beake, ITT Consultant, 2Sys Limited, Malmesbury, UK
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