Unlocking Google's Lotus Notes opportunity

Unlocking Google's Lotus Notes opportunity

Summary: A French startup is helping enterprises migrate from Lotus Notes to the cloud by adding process integration to Google Apps.

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There are 150 million Lotus Notes users worldwide, and many of them are prime candidates for cloud-based alternatives — a prospecting opportunity the sales teams at both Google Enterprise and Microsoft Online Services are well aware of.

But although Google Apps can replace the email and document sharing capabilities of Notes, it lacks a workflow component — an essential ingredient of many existing Notes applications that enterprises have developed over the years. That missing component has provided a useful opportunity for RunMyProcess, a startup based in Paris, France, which offers an integration and process design platform for cloud applications, and has just closed its first round of venture finance.

A large number of its customers — distributed across Europe, South America and Asia — are migrating to Google Apps from Lotus Notes. RunMyProcess provides the glue that binds on-premise application data into a Google spreadsheet or progresses a document through an approval process. Because of its focus on orchestrating processes where human beings interact with data flows, RunMyProcess has carved out a distinctive niche for itself in comparison to other cloud integration vendors, which have tended to focus on automating the exchange of data. It may prove to be a fertile pitch. As founder and CEO Matthieu Hug told me: "Very few things are end-to-end automated within an enterprise context."

Other use cases include adding integration capabilities to help link Oracle CRM OnDemand to Google Calendar or to on-premise applications. RunMyProcess currently has connectors to about 100 applications or resources in its shared library. Because the platform is cloud-based and multi-tenant, any new connectors are available to all customers as soon as they are added to the library.

Lotus Notes migration offers the largest opportunity because of the sheer size of the installed base and the importance of workflow in the highly collaborative applications enterprises have built on the platform. The lack of native process design capabilities puts Google Apps at a competitive disadvantage compared to Microsoft BPOS with these customers, but the addition of RunMyProcess turns the tables by adding a cloud-native alternative that's much easier to implement and use than Microsoft SharePoint. The startup is forming partnerships with Google Apps resellers to help it unlock the opportunity.

Topics: Apps, Cloud, Collaboration, Enterprise Software, Google, IBM, Software

Phil Wainewright

About Phil Wainewright

Since 1998, Phil Wainewright has been a thought leader in cloud computing as a blogger, analyst and consultant.

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6 comments
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  • RE: Unlocking Google's Lotus Notes opportunity

    At $40/user/yr, this demonstrates that Google's $50 price doesnt get you much if you are a enterprise of much size. Honestly, this means not only am I paying double, but I am wiring together two companies rather than going with BPOS? Not too mention with BPOS I am getting SharePoint, Exchange and real Exchange ActiveSync, all Gartner Magic Quadrant leaders in the box.

    So while it's interesting to see a company like this, it's by it's very nature niche and will only considering by a few. So as a startup, it's great to be best in class, but being best in class in a small and shrinking pool is a bad business case IMHO.
    mcleutz
  • Replace 10 boxes with 20?

    I should learn to type first...
    bhershb
  • Replace 10 boxes with 20?

    So should I replace my Lotus Notes/Domino infrastructure that is rock solid(but old), hasn't crashed in years and is competently run by two staff with a user base of over 4000, on 10 servers that handle SMTP Routing, eMail, workflow applications, mobile connectivity, instant messaging and document sharing?

    Or... replace it with 20 MS servers that run only on MS operating systems and 10 people?

    Or... just upgrade to a new version of Notes/Domino in less than an hour, and have an excellent web mail and web development platform? Running on the same number of servers (possibly even less!) with the same number of admin staff (2)

    Or... cobble together some foreign language solution with Google's less secure, less intuitive, less extensible flavor of the month product that looks like it's ready to pop ads up any second ( I know it doesn't but it still looks like a consumer toy).

    I think I'll just upgrade, because in this case: less !=more and more !=more either.
    bhershb
  • There is a reason why the NSA and the Australian Department of Defence use

    There is a reason why the NSA and the Australian Department of Defence use Lotus Notes. It is not just to piss their staff off. As bhershb says it is rock solid and has superb security. Lotus has also has become cross platform with clients for Linux, and OS X in addition to Windows.
    Felix Derzhinsky
  • Lotus Notes App Store

    Software developers have banded together to make a "NotesAppStore" to show existing customers the wide variety of installed apps that still make Notes a good choice.<br><br>By investing in these, IT managers can improve their ROI of their current investment in Lotus Notes.
    <a href="http://www.notesappstore.com/" title="Notes App Store">Notes App Store</a>
    frankpaolino
  • RE: Unlocking Google's Lotus Notes opportunity

    After having used Lotus Notes for a few years in an Enterprise with 400K+ (you can guess which one) users, I have to admit, it was rock solid and allowed me to be productive. Google apps worked great in a 10 man outfit. I do not know how it would perform in an enterprise, and I am sure the question is up in the air. Have been using Microsoft Outlook last few months and cannot say I like it. Generally with familiarty, one tends to like the tools they use, but I am fairly certain my opinion about Outlook will change. I wonder what criteria Gartner uses to classify collaboration tools in the magic quadrant. So where are the tools to migrate from Outlook?
    rnayak