When I started working for Proximity I tried to explain to my wife what it is we do;

We make custom web-based apps for business process optimization and we deliver our software as a service.

what-exactly-would-you-say-you-do-here

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I don’t think that really helped to answer her question. And I’m not saying that it’s her fault she didn’t understand (any married man would quickly realize it was his fault), so I’m going to try to explain what it is we do here at Proximity, in terms anyone can understand. In future posts, I will dig into the technology we use a little deeper.

Let’s start with the basics: software and hardware.

I think most people are familiar with the term software and understand this to be the programs or applications (apps for short) run by their hardware devices, such as a pc / laptop, tablet or smart phone.

But what about the web-based part?

There is a lot of buzz (and confusion) these days around the term cloud. People tend to throw around the term without fully understanding what it means.  Cloud computing is simply storing data and running apps somewhere else on the internet than on your own hard drive.

A lot of apps will also use a database to store data and the computer that the database runs on is usually referred to as a server.

So, if an application is web-based (cloud-based) what it really means is that the application is running on a server somewhere on the internet, not your local device.

So we make apps that just run in the cloud somewhere?

Well yes, but there is a bit more to it than that…

Our software apps run on (are hosted by) the Microsoft Azure cloud platform which provides a great deal of benefits, not only to us as developers but to the customer as well, which I will cover in the next blog post.

So what does it mean that our software is delivered as a service?

Let’s break it down:

Software delivered as a Service is a distribution model, where providers (that’s us) host the apps (we host ours on Microsoft Azure Cloud Platform as we just discussed) and make those apps available to customers over the internet.

Translation:

You use and interact with the app through a web page, using a browser such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Opera or Internet Explorer instead of an app installed on your device.

That’s not so bad, right? No of course not, so let’s keep this ball rollin’.

The second to last part of my simple one line explanation was “for business process optimization”. This is a bit of a loaded statement so let’s talk it out.

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A lot of businesses believe that in order to be successful you need three elements to work together: people, process and technology. There are literally hundreds, if not thousands of articles on this, all with a pretty Venn diagram and most will agree that you need great people to run a successful business, first and foremost.

Once your group of amazing people are aligned with organizational goals you need to consider the process but this can be complicated. There are usually so many moving parts in even a small to medium sized company that it can be very difficult to get the information you need from your data to make intelligent decisions.

Our software can digitize paper-driven and manual processes, streamline repetitive or convoluted processes, share data across departments, identify patterns to gain business insight and extract greater meaning, turning data into information. When you feed that information back into your business, you can optimize your business processes.

You still with me? The very last but key part to my one line explanation was “Custom”.

We make custom web-based apps for business process optimization and we deliver our software as a service.

Our apps are tailored to meet the needs of our customers.

Need a module to calculate x,y or z? No problem.

Need our software to integrate with your ERP, operational, accounting or HR system? We got you covered.

Need a brand-new solution to transform data from one system to talk with another? We do that too.

It has been our vision from the start to maximize the value of our customer’s data to save you time and money.

Put simply, our job, is to make your job easier.

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