While you may have seen our PaaSing the Ball blog series with Pacific users, we wanted to create another new series that is dedicated to YOU - our OpenEdge customers and partners. We are so excited to present the unique stories of how you're using OpenEdge for application development success, as well as where you see the future! The first Q&A in this new OpenEdge blog series titled, "Opening Up," is with Alex Bodson, Owner and Founder of Continuans, based in the Netherlands. We hope you enjoy his story!
Can you gives us a brief background on you/your company?
I graduated in 1994 as a commercial engineer with a specialization in strategic IT management and a master thesis on the subject of artificial intelligence. While taking an MBA course in 1995, I got acquainted with the CEO of a local healthcare company. We wrote a paper on the requirements for the implementation of a track & trace solution for his organization and we sent the paper as a request for proposal (RFP) to Oracle and SAP. After receiving the quotes, we decided to build the solution ourselves.
Over the years, Continuans evolved from an in-house development project to a full-blown ERP solution for the healthcare industry. In 2004, after several crises about food safety, traceability became a legal requirement for the food & beverage industry, so we expanded our business to this market. As most players in the food sector were small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), with little capacity for investments, we began preparing for a SaaS business model. Three key features were added to the application: a webclient, multi-tenancy and usage metering.
By 2008, Continuans was “cloud-born” and we gradually began migrating our customer base. The Cloud also offered new opportunities, like easy integration with other applications in a service oriented architecture. We teamed up with Yappa, a young and dynamic web development company, to add capabilities for e-commerce (B2C) and e-business (B2B).
Today, Continuans is a cloud-based solution suite for the automation of best practices in supply chain management and business administration. Our mission is to enable small and medium-sized organizations to collaborate and participate in the supply chains of the 21st century.
Are you a business or technical user?
I am a technical user.
What business challenge drove your need for Progress OpenEdge? Can you explain how you or your business uses Progress OpenEdge?
We chose Progress for reasons of efficiency and productivity. As a business analyst, I use OpenEdge to turn my business models directly into business logic. That’s a big shortcut in the development process. By reducing our need for technical resources, we are able to deliver affordable solutions for our customers’ needs.
How has Progress OpenEdge helped you to implement a successful solution and one that your customers benefit from?
I believe the introduction of the OpenEdge Appserver in the late 1990s was visionary. It became the key technology that made it pretty straightforward to move to the Cloud. By migrating our customers to the Cloud we have freed them from the burden of maintaining their own infrastructure and we have become more responsive in servicing them.
Where do you see your business moving in the future, and how can Progress help you get there?
We believe that sooner or later every market and its supply chains will be fundamentally disrupted by a third industrial revolution (TIR). To help our customers adapt and identify new opportunities, we will need a development platform that delivers the proper mix between cost effectiveness and customer responsiveness. The integration of OpenEdge with model driven development tools, like BPM and BRMS, is a good step in the right direction.
We also believe that business applications face the risk of being commoditized by the Cloud. Future business models will have to find ways to compensate for decreasing license fees and margins. This is a big challenge for both Continuans and Progress and the value of a sound partnership cannot be underestimated.
To learn more about how Continuans is using OpenEdge for success, read the full case study here.
Want to share your OpenEdge story as part of our new blog series? Email me at email@example.com!
View all posts from Christina Polaski on the Progress blog. Connect with us about all things application development and deployment, data integration and digital business.
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