"Google vs. Microsoft"

  • By Steve Johnson
  • 21 Apr, 2017

OK, not really "versus", but I've been thinking lately...

A conversation I had yesterday has me thinking, "why has Google become my personal go-to for software and services over Microsoft?"  I'm not a fan-boy, I just feel the GA tools out perform M$. Why is that?

I think the answer is low-friction. Google puts a high priority on reducing friction on interactions and transactions. Reduced friction is considered more important than a new feature or locking in customers.
I've seen this since Google search vs. Yahoo search and Hotmail vs. Gmail.  Google works to reduce friction between you and your desired outcomes and Microsoft focuses on increasing feature burden and customer lock-in. It shows up in their products, licensing, and services.

Once, a few years ago, I saw this reduction in friction very clearly when we moved a client from Outlook/Zimbra (Zimbra is a drop-in replacement for Exchange) with a Barracuda spam filter to pure Google Apps.  Management committed to full-web implementation and death to Outlook, even though some people LIVED in Outlook. This was based on a recommendation by some consultants we had brought in to help with the details of the migration. The idea was that everyone had to fully immerse in GA, web interface and all, to see all the benefits. There were only about 100 email accounts, but people lived and breathed email and it was the life blood of the organization, so this was a really big deal.

Before the migration, tech support averaged about 20 email-related issues per week. The issues had to do with everything from problems syncing large message stores (about 10 users had 25GB+ of email saved), to connection issues, to spam, to user questions, and to Outlook fails/lock-ups.  This wasn't a sloppy implementation, it was really dialed-in and monitored.

We did the migration and, within just a few weeks, email issues dropped to 5 per MONTH . That is a drop of almost 95%!  Users were no longer prevented from doing what they wanted to do  75 times per month!

The client saw reduced issues (time) spent on supporting email, which is great and meant tech support could be more proactive in other areas, but the real business benefit was that all those issues were indicators of  friction  users were feeling in a mission critical system. Eliminating that friction was huge!

"Reduced friction" is Google's secret sauce that draws me to their tools. This is one of the reasons Apple has lots of fans because, "it all just works together".  That's what Google is working for across all its platforms, not just with end user tools.

This is also something we are building into our custom software development and operations processes. We can't perfect everything at our scale (we typically build apps for 50 users, not 1 billion), but we can certainly factor it into our client relationships,project management processes, development processes, and our software.  Sounds pretty slick, to me.

Regards,
sj  


Ferox

By Steve Johnson 18 May, 2017
Our own Chris Hager was interviewed by Cindy Waxer of Computerworld for this article on "Cobots" and IT.  Chris was instrumental in the development of the robot program at Praxis Packaging, LLC .
By Steve Johnson 18 May, 2017
Starting in 2016 and delivering in the first quarter of 2017, Ferox worked with one of our premier clients, Praxis Packaging , to prepare for pharmaceutical serialization.  We helped Praxis Packaging  fast-track the configuration and testing of this FDA requirement for packaging prescription drugs.  We were responsible for all aspects of information technology for the project, setting up systems to process critical data from the production line to Praxis' customer.

What is serialization? "Pharmaceutical serialization is the tracking and tracing of the passage of prescription drugs through the supply chain from manufacturing to dispensing. This is generally accomplished through automated, electronic means, and is legally required in many countries. It involves such company practices as recording, authenticating, maintaining and sharing accurate records of items prior to dispatching. Pharmaceutical serialisation uses track and trace technology though the timings for implementation and the information required for a serialisation program is dependent on local national laws and standards."  -- wikipedia.org

The FDA has set some significant deadlines, starting with November 27, 2017.  Ferox helped Praxis Packaging  be ready for serialization well before that deadline and will continue to support their efforts as the upcoming deadlines approach.

With our deep partnership with Praxis, we were able to successfully help coordinate the delivery of this multi-vendor solution.  In addition to having met specific requirements to support one of Praxis' customers, we are now working with Praxis to connect serialization with even more pharma companies, helping to expand even more business opportunities for Praxis.

If you would like to find out how Ferox can help you with your critical projects, contact us now

Praxis Packaging, LLC is a contract packager (CPO) based in Grand Rapids, MI.
Ferox Consulting, LLC is an information technology consulting company based in Grand Rapids, MI 


By Steve Johnson 21 Apr, 2017
A conversation I had yesterday has me thinking, "why has Google become my personal go-to for software and services over Microsoft?"  I'm not a fan-boy, I just feel the GA tools out perform M$. Why is that?

I think the answer is low-friction. Google puts a high priority on reducing friction on interactions and transactions. Reduced friction is considered more important than a new feature or locking in customers.
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