For more than 30 years, CA Technologies has been a leader in IT management software. The company’s first Force.com-based application—CA Agile Vision—is an agile development planning tool that launched in spring 2010 and has already been embraced by a variety of customers across a range of verticals. Kelly Blice is CA’s Vice President of Product Marketing.
CA Technologies has been building on-premises software solutions for decades. What made you decide to build a cloud computing solution?
One of the reasons our company has been so successful over the past 30 years is that we’ve continuously adapted our business to stay on top of new computing trends. Over the past few years, salesforce.com has changed the way people consume and use software. That’s changed what our customers want and what they ask us for. To remain competitive, we needed to also offer cloud-based solutions.
What cloud solutions are you offering?
Clarity, our product and portfolio management solution (available via on-premises and on demand versions), includes three apps that were built on the Force.com platform. In addition to Agile Vision, we also offer Idea Vision, an ideation platform that captures ideas from external and internal customers, and Product Vision, a product requirements planning tool. The Force.com-based tools seamlessly integrate with Clarity and let our customers manage their entire innovation life cycle, from ideas all the way through developing and releasing solutions to their own customers.
Why did you choose Force.com?
With Force.com, we get things done quickly and continue to innovate because we don’t have to build all the foundation pieces ourselves. For instance, our competitors have had to build their own collaboration tools, but Salesforce Chatter was just there for us. It adds tremendous value because our customers can enable employees and their own customers to follow their ideas all the way through the product life cycle.
The marketplace has a lot of confidence in Force.com. When we talk to customers about the platform we developed the Vision solutions on, they immediately understand how important operational considerations like security and availability were built in from the start.
What’s the best thing about Force.com?
The speed. We developed and launched Agile Vision in just 6 months. For CA Technologies, that’s about half the time it normally takes us to develop an on-premises application. The other thing that was so fabulous was that not only did we develop faster, but we actually used 30% fewer resources. It’s easy for a strong Java developer to start working with Force.com, so we didn’t need to do a lot of training or hire experts, and our transition costs were very low.
Not only did Force.com help us cut out a lot of labor and up-front costs, but when it came to actually bringing our cloud offering to market, everything we needed to manage the life cycle of our product came built in with ISVforce, which saved a tremendous amount of effort.
We’ve recently added a telesales team, and the AppExchange has been an indispensable tool for agents. There’s no need to set up an in-person demo. They can point their customers directly to the AppExchange to try out our apps.