Tools

More Then A Hammer

There is an old adage that goes something like this... 'if your only tool is a is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail' . This 'one tool does it all' approach applies to many in the business consulting field today. Many of my colleagues will recommend you get SAP, or PeopleSoft, or JDEdwards... whatever they know best becomes the solution that is best for you. Buy and implement just one system, that will do everything needed to manage your organization. There is some truth to that... One system is what is required but you cannot buy it. The reason is that "everything needed to manage your organization" changes constantly. New strategies, new technologies, new applications are changing our lives and the way we do business continually. You can't buy your future, but you can prepare for it.

We advocate a single system as well but without the cost and constraint of propitiatory packages. We prefer an approach where the investment is predominately in your own organization. An approach that leave you and your organization as experts in your own systems and processes.  A solution that leaves you and your team equipped to deal with the inevitable disruptions coming our way.

Which brings us to our tool set. Predominately Open Source applications (you own and can configure or adapt the software as required)  or freely available tools and utilities that will speed processes and reduce cost. Tailored together in a single platform that is also open, and free.

Joomla! - Arguably the best of the best Open Source Content Management Systems. Joomla becomes the framework within which we will construct your Enterprise Management System. Joomla has over 8,000 extensions covering requirements from shared calendars, Contact Management Systems, Project Management, to  Document Management, and much more... even ERP.

Source Forge - For anything that cannot be found in the native Joomla! extension directory there is Source Forge, a global catalog of Open Source products and projects.

Google Apps - Want to shed the licensing burdens associated with Microsoft Office and Exchange, and jump in to the open collaborative world of shared documents? There is money to be saved not only in licensing but think about this.... hwo often do you work with others to produce a single document. How many versions are flying around on your network... who has the latest one, how much time is spent making sure everyone is on the same page? Well if there was but one document... all of that goes away. The process is efficient and effective as communication and collaboration take place at the same time, not in some linear, toss it over the wall process. Spreadsheet, Presentation, Document, Forms, Drawing... all available through Google Apps

Skype - For my money, this is perhaps the most powerful and important collaboration tool available, especially for those organizations where employees and business partners must work together over great distance.

In general, just about anything an organization might need is available for download, and free. That leaves the lion share of investment directed toward integrating components, documenting new or modified processes and training your 'system citizens' .