"To help businesses achieve benefits of the cloud through open, secure, local and fully-supported cloud software solutions"
Similarly to most cloud software providers, Webrecs provides cloud-based software applications for which users pay a regular subscription. However, this is where the similarity ends. Analysis of our mission statement reveals points of difference which we think are essential to success in the cloud :
- For Businesses. We do not sell consumer products or commodity cloud software to individuals. There is plenty of great commodity cloud software out there (like Microsoft Office, Google drive, Dropbox, Gmail etc.) - but that is not what we do - however we DO like to integrate with them because they are useful and widely-used. We also love to integrate with other cloud providers of accounting, collaboration, email, electronic signature, marketing or social media software.
- Your system and data is open. Not in a security or access sense, but in the sense of allowing you to take your data and/or your software and migrate / move elsewhere. Yes, that's right - we make it easy for you to ditch us ! We do not lock you into proprietary software or data formats, and we are beholden to no-one because of our Open-source heritage. We make it all available through a RUB if you like - and/or you can customise it yourself with or without our help. Our mission specifically precludes us from locking customers into plans or proprietary software, which makes it difficult or impossible to move for existing customers. Our customers continue to use us, not because it is too hard to move, but because we provide excellent value and support.
- Your data is truly secure. Contrary to popular belief, your biggest security risk is NOT that someone will hack your data - it is that your data will become unavailable to you due to factors beyond your control. This includes data-corruption, service provider error/bankruptcy, infrastructure failure, politics or simply failing to pay your bill. Most cloud-providers will tell you of multiple redundancies and replications, how it is almost impossible to lose data and how rigorous/secure their backup strategies are. But none of them will guarantee your data. Not one. Why ? Because it is not possible. Data can be (and is, regularly) lost. When data is stored in the lowest-cost data-centres around the world, it is almost impossible to know how many copies of your data are replicated or where. At Webrecs, we also do not guarantee your data BUT we do provide local hosting (we know exactly where your data is) with daily backups of your system so that you can get a restore, and crucially , a "relocatable user backup" or "RUB" which is your insurance policy that can be stored locally (or kept on Amazon S3). You can activate it at any time on-premises. We know of no other provider which offers such comprehensive cloud security.
- The software applications are fully supported locally. Our belief is that most businesses have always and will continue to require local IT support, whether they have an internal IT presence or not. The fact that software is not on-premise does not remove the requirement for local support which involves training, problem-solving, advice, integration with other cloud or on-premise software, customisation, feature-requests, backup/restore and upgrade. The "IT guy" does not disappear with your move to the cloud, he just changes form. As a business, you deserve local support from someone who knows YOUR business and cares about it.
Webrecs was a profitable company before the term "cloud" became a buzzword. In 2007, the founders saw an opportunity to use over 20 years of enterprise software development experience (specifically in Document Managment and Enterprise Content Management (ECM)) - to address a huge gap in the SME landscape - that of "the paperless office". We combined the 3 converging technologies of Web, Virtualisation and Open-source to provide a compelling platform for our vision of "ECM for the masses" at a fraction of the traditional cost. The recipe was to take the best ECM open-source products, customise them, host them in virtual containers and provide them as a "Software as a service" or "SAAS" offering to business users. 8 years following our vision of Web-based software-as-a-service has proven to be the biggest disruption in IT for decades, with all vendors scrambling to get a piece of the cloud pie.
After successfully doing this for a few years, in the process having to end up tailoring our base offering to different verticals - financial practices, legal practices and particularly SMSF administration practices - we realised that the provision of a Document Management System alone was not enough - nearly every customer also needed a Customer Relationship System (CRM) - so we expanded our offering to a combined and integrated DMS and CRM. This, together with our detailed integrations with the online accounting systems of Class and Xero which were built along the way, provided a strong solution for almost any business, managing the 3 fundamental necessities of customers, documents and accounts.
Our journey also reinforced the ongoing need for local support for customers - initially some customisation to make the the system an exact fit for their business, but then an ongoing relationship covering small enhancements, training, problem-resolution, advice and integration particularly with respect to third-party systems. We very quickly became their "IT-guy in the cloud" . So our services team was strengthened to accommodate the demand.
With 8 years "in the cloud" under our belt, we have a comprehensive and flexible framework which allows not only documents and customers to be managed but also completely bespoke web applications and integrations with a host of other line-of-business systems. Our team and customer base have grown substantially and we have become adept at both minor and comprehensive customisations and integrations, with these having become mission-critical systems for many customers. We take pride in knowing our customers personally and understanding their needs in detail. We will continue to expand our Australian presence, helping local businesses on their journey into the cloud.
Along the way we have built good processes for building and customising software in virtual containers while remaining upgradeable, and have a great deal of experience in how the cloud and small businesses work. We can also use almost any hosting provider so are able to get competitive hosting prices. We have strong international connections both in the development and business areas. Everything we do can be replicated in local data centers and modified for local conditions (networks, regulations, hosting providers). We are in discussion with Canadian and South African partners at the moment, with a view to open a local Webrecs presence in these countries with a strong focus on our mission - to provide open, secure, local, fully-supported cloud software solutions for businesses.