Archive for April, 2008

Software as a Service (SaaS)

Monday, April 28th, 2008

There’s a strong movement towards Software as a Service (SaaS) now as being more cost-efficient than traditional software licensing. In SaaS, the software provider develops, hosts and operates a web application over the Internet (A third-party provider may host and operate the application.). Customers use, but do not own, the application. It is a subscription model that may generate recurring revenues for the provider.

Here are some resources to learn more about software licensing and SaaS:

* Jim Geisman is a software pricing expert with MarketShare, Inc. He’s written Guide to Software Licensing Models, which reviews more than 30 types of models.

* The Software & Information Industry Association has produced a new whitepaper, Channels For the New SaaS Industry, which discusses differences between traditional IT channels and SaaS channels.

* Eric Esperne of James River Consulting wrote an article for Mass High Tech that discusses the pros and cons of SaaS compared with traditional licensing, Is SaaS Really Better Than Software Licensing? He offers a more detailed white paper, Is SaaS Really Better For Business Than Software Licensing?

* An article from McKinsey, Delivering Software as a Service, includes a discussion of the economics and total cost of ownership of SaaS.

How to Prepare and Deliver World-Class Presentations

Monday, April 21st, 2008

Tim Ferriss has an excellent post on planning and structuring presentations, as advised by Dan Pink, Al Gore’s former chief speechwriter.

Massachusetts Mandates Mandatory Treble Damages for State Wage Violations

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts just became the only state in the nation to set a strict liability standard for state wage and hour violations.  The new law makes awards of treble damages for all violations, with no exception or defense, even if they were inadvertent.

The law, which takes effect on July 13, 2008, increases the cost of doing business in Massachusetts.  Watch for an increase in employment-related litigation.  More information is available here and here.

Listing Requirements of U.S. Exchanges

Tuesday, April 8th, 2008

The major exchanges for securities in the U.S. have specific requirements for company that wish to publicly list their shares. These requirements vary depending on the type of security. They include minimum share prices for an initial listing and continued traded as well as an aggregate minimum market value. They also differ depending on whether the company is U.S.-based or is a foreign issuer. The listing requirements for the three major exchanges are as follows:

* New York Stock Exchange

* NASDAQ Exchange

* American Stock Exchange

Integrity in Business

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

Honesty is the only way to get aheadand stay therein the business world. This sounds like common sense, but it’s surprising how many people don’t understand it, from the juniormost employee to the Chief Executive Officer.

Developing a reputation for being an honest and trustful person is the most valuable asset you have. Without it, all the intelligence or assets you have are meaningless. Contracts, for example, are based on trust. While a written contract should includes protections against disagreements between the parties, few will sign a contract if they expect to end up in litigation because of a a trust issue.

Here’s a situation I know of where trust became a major issue in a mid-sized company. After a merger, the CEO wanted to cut costs. He told an executive to reduce a manager’s pay by 20%. The manager, a popular and effective employee, was in a bind for personal reasons, so she reluctantly accepted the pay reduction. When the CEO heard that the pay reduction was accepted, he told the executive to fire the manager.

Getting rid of the manager had been the CEO’s goal, but the way he did it was dishonest. When word of this incident traveled through the company, it unnerved people. Some of them were shocked at what had happened. The CEO’s action’s didn’t just affect the one individual, it lowered morale among many other employees. Within a couple of months, several key executives and managers left.

The CEO achieved the result he wanted, which was to terminate the manager, but at a great cost to the company. He could have achieved the same result, but if he handled the situation in an honest manner, the effect on others would’ve been greatly diminished.

Trust can be the hardest thing to build, but it’s so easy to lose.