Today marks the major annual release of Clearspace, Jive’s collaboration platform (as well as a completely new website). Version 1.0 released in Feb 2007 and version 2.0 ships today. Jive has two components of the platform:
- Clearspace. Used as a company’s UI for collaborating with coworkers.
- Clearspace Community (formerly Clearspace X). Powers
company’s online customer or partner communities.
The 2.0 release is focused primarily on Clearspace (though Clearspace Community profited, too). There are 5 new things added to the platform, plus we’ve acquired Jotlet, a kick-ass calendaring company. You can read what Dave and Matt had to say on JiveTalks, the company blog.
Since our software is on an annual subscription model, we’re highly motivated to ensure that things are actually working for our customers. This keeps us very engaged with them which is cool because we get to see how they’re using our products and what we need to do to make significant improvements. The new things we’ve added were chosen based on collaborating with our customers.
One thing came out loud and clear. It was the people-centric aspect of Clearspace that companies craved. And they wanted to see us make that even more powerful. Sometimes we heard customers say they wanted, “Facebook for the Enterprise.” We weren’t sure what that meant, exactly, but after a lot of customer conversations we figured it out:
- While you add friends in the social web, you’re paid to be friends at work. So friending wasn’t something they wanted.
- Fast ways of seeing the activity of relevant coworkers. More insight on how conversation and information flows through networks of people.
- Much faster access to who people are and how they’re connected organizationally and relationally.
The most consistent feedback we got was that while Clearspace was great at bringing people to engage with each other, it was almost too good at it which made staying on top of what was important critical. While we have inboxes for email, there wasn’t a place in Clearspace to keep track of all the people, collaboration and content most important to each individual in the Enterprise. Clearspace 2.0 offers every employee an easy way to set up their view of their company so that it makes the most sense for them.
New in Clearspace 2.0 are projects, which anyone can easily set up. They’re 100% widgetizable so that you can see your work the way you want to. This makes it great for people who are more visual, more tick-list oriented or document-centric to set things up exactly the way they want.
Share pieces of Clearspace with those that don’t have it
Now people can invite folks outside the company who don’t have Clearspace to work with you. Temporarily move documents into a cloud and invite others in. When you’re done, pull the content back inside Clearspace and keep moving.
Expose and socialize content in Sharepoint
Our customers use several different Content Management Systems but want to use Clearspace as the central place for employees to work together. Being able to file the output of collaboration away or retrieve and expose files that may be in the Sharepoint file server, greatly complements the folks who want to intelligently ties different enterprise applications together. You can expect Jive to connect to other CMS systems through the year.
Our first acquisition: Jotlet
Already relocated to Portland and cranking, the guys from Jotlet deliver a critical product piece for us. We met them at Office 2.0 last year (I think it was our Sony client who pulled me over and said I had to check them out) and have been brainstorming with them ever since. They’re a fantastic cultural fit, share our vision, and have a fantastic calendaring product. Expect to see a lot of very cool synchronization and coordination in upcoming Clearspace releases.
There’s way too many new things to name. Significant architecture work (Springs, Struts2), Admin reporting, rich text editor improvements–the list is pretty long. Everyone at Jive put in very long, hard, and passionate efforts into this release. I’m super proud of all their hard work and look forward to our customers help us make it even better.