AWD Product Madness With @lw927

I finished up my day at AWD ADVANCE in the product roadmap session held by Lisa Williams and Mike Lovell. It’s March Madness here in the US (that’s some college basketball thing) so they kept with that theme with mini basketballs and some yearbook pics of Lisa on the court.

Like any vendor’s product management group, they need to consider (and anticipate) the market for their products, and spend their resources most wisely to add capabilities that will be of most value to their customers while supporting or deprecating existing features. Here’s what’s coming:

  • Dynamic case management in v10.7, expected at the end of May; we heard about this in detail from Judith Morley this morning and will include mobile capabilities in a future version
  • Seamless installation process (this tweet from the hands-on labs here says that’s probably true)
  • Overall usability including people/roles administration in v10.9; they have a lot of new plans for user portals
  • Enhance monitoring capabilities and deprecate the existing BI client
  • Process design and orchestration
  • Communications service for multi-channel correspondence management

There was a laundry list of features coming up, and some audible approval in the room for things that sound small but I know can be huge for reusability, such as variable timers and support for localized business day calendars.

Dates beyond v10.7 are not announced, although likely they will not meet their past targets of two releases per year with some of the major changes in progress now. I think that they’re also challenged somewhat by a customer base that is dragging their feet moving off the legacy platform – still about 1/3 on it – and then start to take advantage of the new functionality once they’re on the new platform. It’s hard to be completely forward-thinking when there are still active instances of your software that are old enough to vote.

Looking to the 3-5 year horizon, it’s about creating products that allow their customers to adapt to changing business environments: primarily, shifting from “imaging and workflow” (which is how many of their customers categorize what AWD does for them) to “customer event management”. They talked about some of the areas where this innovation is likely to happen: capture, moving from paper to direct data entry by the customer, and mobile check capture; predictive analytics and simulation; adaptive case management, as opposed to the production case management that’s launching soon; work allocation to support collaborative/team work; user experience; and more. Nothing specific here, and also nothing that’s groundbreaking from a market perspective, but will likely shake things up for their conservative customer base.

That’s it for me at AWD ADVANCE for 2013, it’s been a great day of presentations following a fun customer advisory board dinner last night that included discussions of my cat on Twitter. I’m on a plane again next week – third week in a row – to the Gartner BPM show in DC.

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