I got the following email from a career coach this morning:
I’ve been trying to convince coaching clients to use JibberJobber. But I’m getting objections to “web-based systems”. They are concerned about security and want to be able to back up all their data locally. Do you have any responses to these types of questions that I can provide to them?
I wish I had an amazing “oh my gosh you must do this and now you really get it” response, but I don’t. Let me break this down into two different objections, with my thoughts on each:
It’s hard to use JibberJobber, in general. It’s hard to put in the data, or it takes too much discipline to keep it going, or I have a sticky-note solution that seems to work just fine.
This coach isn’t directly asking this, but it has to be addressed because it might be the root problem.
If people aren’t ready to use JibberJobber as their relationship management tool, or as their job search organizer, nothing I do or say can change that.
I remember a time I spoke to 100 people and offered the audience 6 months of premium services. 3 people emailed me that week to ask for it. 97 people didn’t care. They weren’t ready.
What would I have done, if I was in the audience?
Good Jason wants to say he’d definitely take advantage, use it, and get immense value out of JibberJobber.
Realistic Jason doesn’t think he’d use it at all. Why? Because it seems like a long-term tool, and Realistic Jason just knew he’d have a job offer in the next few weeks. He didn’t need a long-term tool – just a pile of post-it notes and he’d be fine, until he landed.
Smart Jason now looks back and realizes how short-sighted that thinking was, and appreciates the idea of a long-term career management, relationship management system to use for the rest of his life.
When you are talking to your friends in a job search they are looking for right-now tools … tools that can help them right now! JibberJobber is an awesome, amazing tool, but it doesn’t solve their pain RIGHT NOW! It might solve many pains in years to come, but some people want RIGHT NOW relief. And they tend to find it hiding behind job boards. The only issue is, that relief is temporary and gives them a false sense of hope.
Now, when I speak, I offer, but if you don’t take it I don’t chase you, or try and convince you. If you are ready, and know you are frustrated because of things that JibberJobber can help you with (like organizing your job search, or tracking were you send resumes, etc.), then you are ready to come, learn, do, invest (time).
Until then, I just share various messages and hope you think I’m smart/wise enough to listen to every once in a while.
When the pain is there, you’ll be back for JibberJobber.
Now, what about this online, in the cloud system? Is the data safe and secure? Or should I get a desktop system that I have complete control over?
This is one of two classic software questions that CIOs have ask about software they look at buying (or leasing). (the other question is should we make it ourselves, or should we buy it from a vendor?)
Benefits of using a desktop system, like ACT!
- Buy it once, you own it forever and ever. This is appealing, except every once in a while upgrades come out and you feel compelled to pay as much for an upgrade as you did for the original package, so the $100 list price is not really the final price. Just give it a few years – the features will seem so outdated that either you stop using it or you feel compelled to keep forking over the money for upgrades.
- You control all of the data… no one else can access it, ever. Yeah, unless your system gets hacked into (don’t worry, no hacker wants your CRM database – it’s too boring). Oh yeah… YOU can’t access it from anywhere but your PC/laptop – if you need it, you are out of luck until you go home and login to your system.
- You don’t have to worry about anyone else backing it up, because you can. But do you? Or, will you restore it? I’ve had about 4 computer crashes in the last 5 years and each time I had backups of Outlook (from Mozy.com). But each time I just reinstalled fresh, without putting my backups in. It was too much of a hassle (it really wasn’t much work, but it was more than I wanted to deal with).
- When you get a new computer, you can just install the disk again, and you’ll be up and running. Granted, that’s if you can find the disk. I somehow seem to lose all of my software disks… 🙁
Benefits of going with something in the “cloud,” which is the current cool way of saying someone else hosts it on their server (formerly referred to as ASP (application service provider) or SaaS (Software as a Service)):
- You really don’t have to worry about anything, except is the site down. Systems like JibberJobber (and salesforce and google docs and ___ (there are millions, I’m sure)) work really hard to ensure their system is up and running and accessible to you, from wherever you are – whether you are at your home computer, on vacation in Panama, accessing from a smart phone, or at your mother-in-law’s house.
- You get all of the updated when they are released. When we fix a bug, add an enhancement, tweak a process, add a new feature, etc. you get that right away, without uploading a patch or an upgrade, or buying an addon. The code sits on a server… when the developers push the new code to the server, everyone automatically gets it. No effort on your part.
- We take care of the backups. We backup your data, and our code, regularly. The backups are treated similarly to how any large company treats their backups – with reverence and respect. They put this data on a tape drive (weird, huh?) and take it off-site regularly (weekly?), in case the whole facility catches on fire… the tape drive can be used to restore the entire system. If this happens we’ll be down for a while, but we’re in a position to get back up, with no effort on your part (just patience).
- You get a say in the features we have, and the features you need. Because of the way a cloud system works, it’s easier for us to add enhancements and tweaks to the code than if we were doing the traditional (old-fashioned) software development. As an example, let’s say we need to change a word on your screen. We can do that easily, for all users, and keep it all consistent. If we had a package like ACT!, we’d have to do it in version, and it would only work on certain versions… and getting that patch to you would be a nightmare.
- We can try things out. LinkedIn “tries things out” all the time, throwing a new feature in to a certain set of users to see what they think about it without introducing it to everyone. It’s sometimes frustrating for people to either see, or not see, a new feature, and then have it moved or taken away. We don’t do that much (hardly at all), but it’s a great way to test an idea instead of pushing everything out all the time.
I have to admit, I’m rusty at this debate since I haven’t had to go through it in a corporate setting for a long time. I’d love to hear other reasons by IT types, who have to evaluate this stuff regularly.
The bottom line, though, is that if someone isn’t ready to jump on JibberJobber, they won’t. I can’t spend time chasing them and convincing them… sometimes no amount of talking will do.
What do you guys think?