Our product development goal is to build a complete, intuitive business management platform for growing businesses.
To this end we are heavily invested in research and development and invite our customers to help us build ideas through our active Feature Suggestion forum.
Also every six month we publish a public roadmap that shows our customers what we have achieved over the last 6 months and what we're aiming to achieve over the next 6 months.
WORK[etc] is a platform specifically for growing businesses and remote teams. It is not targeted at any particularly industry and its tools suitable for all businesses.
The more common companies that use WORK[etc] come from these industries:
We recently tipped over 1000 business customers, equating to roughly 15,000 individual users. (April 2012)
At last count we had paying customers from 28 countries including USA, Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, India, China, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Singapore, Malaysia, Ireland, Mexico, Spain and more.
WORK[etc] is a micro-multinational company, meaning our team works remotely across many different cities, countries and continents.
The CEO of WORK[etc], Daniel Barnett, splits his time between San Francisco and Sydney. The CTO is based in Melbourne, Australia.
We have support people in Los Angeles and San Francisco in the USA and in Essex, United Kingdom and Auckland, New Zealand.
The development team can be found in Halifax in Canada and Bucharest, Romania.
Why do this?
WORK[etc] is self-funded with no debt (not even a credit card!). We don't answer to investors or venture capitalists and are masters of our own destiny. With over 1000 growing businesses depending on WORK[etc] for their success comes immense responsibility.
To ensure we live up to this challenge we ensure we are always fiscally responsible. Our revenue comes from a subscription product meaning we charge a whole lot of companies a little bit of money, automatically every month.
If we billed "X" dollars last month, odds are that we'll bill "X" dollars this month and then some. And as we rarely have businesses with more than 5 staff leave us, our customers are long term customers.
What this means is that we have a regular and guaranteed income stream.
WORK[etc] is stable, profitable and completely focussed on always improving the product.
Our focus is is simply:
When it comes to building a better product, it is important to know that WORK[etc] is the biggest user of WORK[etc]. We use WORK[etc] to manage WORK[etc], across 9 time zones and 3 continents, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. So when we improve WORK[etc] "the product", we're also improving the bottom line of WORK[etc] "the business". It is fundamentally in our best interest to always be making WORK[etc] better.
When it comes to customer support, it is our belief that having a great product is only half the story (possibly even less). Great customer support is what makes the product memorable.
WORK[etc] officially started in 2006 building discrete web tools for a number of clients as a company called Veetro. By 2008 we had started to identify common app requirements among our customers and started work on a consolidated a business management platform changing our name at the same time to WORK[etc].
It is safe to say our first version of the software was not the roaring success we expected, even though it attracted just over 500 businesses. The technology just was not available to deliver the speedy, slick app experience we were chasing.
Around the same time we released version 1, broadband suddenly become ubiquitous and more modern web browsers allowed for in-page loading known as Ajax.
It was these advances that drove us back to the drawing board. Starting from absolute scratch we spent the next 18 months programming and released a brand new platform late in 2009.
Since then we've added more than 1000 customers from 28 countries to the platform and stuck to a schedule that sees almost daily releases and every few months a major upgrade.
Our user-guide includes over 200 pages of videos, text and detailed diagrams.
Additionally, on every page we have help-glyphs that provide in-page help on how to use a feature.
On every page within WORK[etc], there is a clear link to contact support.
Yes. We have several training packages available.
WORK[etc] has an active Feature Suggestion forum where our community can suggest ideas, discuss and vote ideas up or down.
The more popular the idea, the more likely it will be implemented. But, it is not just about popularity. We look at every idea and if we think it good, we'll go ahead and build it.
Before making major releases available to all users, we run an invite-only beta program. We make an announcement on our blog and ask for guinea pigs to sign up and test out the changes.
WORK[etc] is designed to be intuitive whilst not sacrificing functionality. What this means is that users can get started immediately with the basics and then take time to use the more specialized features as they need too.
WORK[etc] does not currently have a partner or affiliate program.
WORK[etc] is a collection of integrated software tools that provides small business with a powerful web-based system ready to improve workflow and management. It automates key tasks and processes to help make your business more efficient - and an efficient business means less stress and more profits.
Some examples of how a business or team might use WORK[etc]:
Every business is unique and what we have found is that every business ends up using WORK[etc] in slightly different ways.
WORK[etc] will be a good fit for your business if you have between 3 and 100 people in your organization. If you have less than 3 users then you may find it overkill; WORK[etc] is a tool for team work and collaboration incorporating a lot of features traditionally found in enterprise-level software.
If your business is engaged in a selling a product or service and then delivering and supporting that product or service, WORK[etc] is a perfect fit as it manages the entire process for you; from sales lead through to provisioning, billing and after-sales support.
WORK[etc] is a collaboration product designed to run growing businesses and remote teams. To get the most out of WORK[etc] we recommend having at least 3 people in your team to well beyond 100 people.
To make WORK[etc] as fast (and secure) as possible, meaning that you enjoy using the software more, we have customized our hosting environment to ensure WORK[etc] is not only fast but never fails.
We prefer to look after all the hosting requirements for you, so that you just need to concentrate on building your business. For this reason, WORK[etc] is only available on our infrastructure.
And more importantly, because we are continuously, daily (!), updating and improving WORK[etc] we can ensure that you are always accessing the latest version and that any issues are identified and quickly resolved. This is the "SERVICE" in "Software as a Service".
For the technically minded, WORK[etc]'s infrastructure includes 1.5TB of RAID-10, SSD (!) drives and over 768 GB of RAM. It would be prohibitively expensive for the average business to build and maintain a relative level of infrastructure just to host their own installation of WORK[etc].
Yes, WORK[etc] has a number of automated tools to help import your data. Or for a low fee, one of our support team will take all your data and manage the import for you.
Yes. We believe that your data belongs to you always. At any time you can download a complete SQL database of your entire WORK[etc] data archive. And on many screens and tools you can export specific data as excel spread sheets.
WORK[etc] includes all modules for the single, low monthly fee. If you don't plan on using a module, or if you don't want your staff using a module, access can simply be turned off from the permissions manager. Whilst permissions is turned off, that module will no longer appear as an item on the menu.
Yes. WORK[etc] has a number of email integrations:
Yes. WORK[etc] has a full and open API. In fact, we built the WORK[etc] on top of our API. Read more about WORK[etc]'s API.
Whilst WORK[etc] cannot be customized for an individual customer we do have a number of features and settings to make WORK[etc] a better match to how you do business:
Even though WORK[etc] is not â€œcustom development it can be easily set up to closely manage the nuances of your specific business.
A user is a person actively involved in your business who would perform actions such as lodge timesheets, update projects, manage support cases, sell products or create invoices.
A user is not your customer, supplier or partner. WORK[etc] allows unlimited contacts like these.
A contractor is usually a user for your business.
It depends on how active your contractor is in your business.
You can give any outside person or company access to the customer portal where they can:
But if you need your contractor to lodge time sheets, create and edit projects, answer support cases or manage sales leads then they are really "users" in the WORK[etc] system.
WORK[etc] is only available as a month-to-month subscription. WORK[etc] is more than just software, it includes infrastructure to make it available online as well as backup solutions to ensure you never lose data. Additionally, the product is being constantly improved, allowing us to pass all improvements along to our subscribers - never pay for upgrades again. This also means it can scale up and down with your business - meaning you don't get stuck paying for expensive software if need to downsize your business. And adding new users takes less than a few minutes.
WORK[etc] has a strict policy about discounting.
We have a business to run as well and don't want to slow down our product development or limit support levels because we've been discounting our product.
Furthermore, WORK[etc] does not "price-match" as it is not comparable to products like Basecamp or Salesforce. This would be like going to a car yard and asking for a discount on this Mercedes because you saw a Toyota next door for half the price. Both cars are great products, but you cannot compare them on price alone.
But if you have been a customer for more than 6 months and find your business struggling, we are more than happy to lend a hand with payment holidays (because we actually care).
WORK[etc] combines CRM, project management, sales, billing, support and more in the single platform. For $49 and up per user you get access to not only all these tools but also the benefit from increased productivity from using an all-in-one system.
To purchase a separate system for CRM, another system for project management and yet another system for billing would cost your business much more; not only in terms of dollars but also from lost productivity with your staff having to learn different system and switch between them during their typical work day.
And then you have to include the costs creating integrations between all those products. It gets very expensive, very quickly.
Yes it is. Take advantage while you can. Although we have no firm plans to raise the existing base price, be assured that when we do, all existing customers will be "grand fathered" at their current pricing level.
Yes. We have special rates when you select and pre-pay a 12 month contract.
We bill your account on a monthly basis and you are free to cancel at any time. Please note that we do not refund any unused portion of your subscription.
WORK[etc] is built on tried and tested Microsoft platform, specifically the .net architecture and MS SQL 2008 databases. We use only fully redundant Dell servers and Intel branded SSD drives. Our hardware and network is fully redundant with multiple servers and bandwidth providers.
WORK[etc] has dedicated servers located within the Peer1 network. Peer1 has 17 global datacentres, is a Top 5 hosting provider and maintains 13,000 miles of dedicated fiber cable in its SuperNetwork™. You can read more about Peer1 here: http://www.peer1.com
Fast. Our servers utilize the latest SSD drives in RAID 10 array. We have multiple servers and firewalls to distribute loads and plug into a high speed private network to ensure the end user always connects through the most direct route.
We are currently sitting on a 99.98% uptime for the last 18 months.
Yes. All accounts access WORK[etc] through industry-standard, 256 bit SSL security (most likely the same as your online bank). Additionally we utilize high-end firewalls and remote monitoring services to ensure your data is secure.
WORK[etc] has detailed permissions settings which allow you to either allow full access, allow view-only access or deny access. This means you can control what each of your employees can view and what activities they can perform inside of WORK[etc].
When it comes to growing your business, "free" CRMs can end up costing you more than you think.
We've always made it a point to share tips and tricks, both those we learn in the course of us actually using WORKetc the app to run WORKetc the company and those we gather from real users. Today we're turning the spotlight on how clever users use WORKetc to grow their businesses.
How do you run multiple different brands and still have time to host a podcast and regularly speak at conferences? Donna Grindle of the Kardon Group tells us how WORKetc business management app lets her do just that.
This former IT consultant traded the uncertainty of contractual work with even more uncertainty when he switched to IT disposals, but he had a pair of aces up his sleeve: a solid, process-oriented approach and WORKetc.
One post wasn't enough to cover all the tips WORKetc users shared about how they use our business management software to grow their business. Here's part two.