Ability Software earned its award at the IBM Business Partner Awards for the implementation of its AbilitySuite email and document management solutions for US-based client Sportcraft.
When Ability Software initially developed the suite, it had no inkling of how good the uptake would be, says CEO Mark Presnell.
“AbilitySuite came about from user demand. We had a number of clients ask us for solutions that all had a common thread: they wanted better ways of managing their workflows and wanted to improve their ability to search unstructured information. We had already developed some clever routines that did exactly that, so we refined the processes and created a set product: the AbilitySuite.”
While Ability was developing AbilitySuite, the market for compliance and email management was exploding. “There has been a huge uptake in the need for AbilitySuite,” says Presnell. “Not only does it help people within an organisation manage their individual emails, but it helps them share key emails with colleagues. With the volume of emails coming into and going out of an organisation, it is almost impossible to track them without a system. AbilitySuite prompts users to tag their emails with key words so that they can be searched and retrieved. This capability has proven to be very popular.”
AbilitySuite has extended the utility of IBM Lotus Notes, says Presnell. “Far from being an ‘end-of-the-line’ solution, Lotus Notes is as vibrant as ever. The new version, Release 8, has given users more capabilities than ever before. Notes, by its very nature, fosters collaboration and interactivity. People are used to being able to share files and documents so there is already that mindset. And when you combine Notes with the extra functionality that AbilitySuite provides, the results are impressive indeed.”
AbilitySuite enables organisations to align their email and messaging with their business processes, says Presnell. “Typically, there have been two separate systems running in parallel – email and applications. AbilitySuite gives organisations the ability to merge the two and leverage the information held in both. It has proven to be a winning concept.”
There are now around 20 people involved with the development and distribution of AbilitySuite on a global basis. “We have a mixed model for getting AbilitySuite into the hands of customers. The IBM ISV programme has been a big boost for us. Plus we have been recruiting resellers overseas. We’re growing our business in Australia and are looking at breaking into the US marketplace. Compliance is a big issue up there and we are looking forward to having an impact.”
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