Scandinavian [Software] Design

Posted on January 29, 2010 under Uncategorized by

Is Motive Systems the IKEA of Document Management Solutions?

[This month’s series features excerpts from our conversation with M-Files user Peter Uhlman, president of the Philadelphia-based Percheron Group, a commercial and residential real estate development company.]

In trying to describe the underlying philosophy of the M-Files EDMS, long-time user Peter Uhlman brings up the fact that Motive Systems is actually a Finnish company.  Its M-Files document management product has enjoyed widespread success in Europe and only relatively recently broke into North American markets.

“M-Files is through and through Scandinavian in its simplicity and functionality,” says Uhlman.  The Finns gained heavyweight status in software development in 1991 with Linux, a Unix-based open-source operating system developed by a young Helsinki engineer, Linus Torvalds.

Uhlman characterizes the Scandinavian sense of design as innovative with an eye for clean and elegant functional solutions.  This sensibility is apparent not only in Scandinavian commercial creations — from furniture design to software programs — but also in the business models that sell them.

“Most people might know Scandinavian design from IKEA [the world’s largest household retailer].  And it’s a good analogy with how Motive Systems relates to its M-Files user base.  IKEA does not care that they could sell their furniture for 35 percent more, or marginalize it, or come out with a new line every month.  It’s as if they put the whole cheap capitalism thing aside.  They sell a solution to your problem, not a scheme to keep themselves in business.”

Motive Systems — in both its simple solutions to universal file management problems, and its offering of generous functionality within a modest pricing structure — follows a similar corporate philosophy, according to Uhlman.

“I can add metadata tags fluidly to any file and create any kind of workflow I need in M-Files.  Other software companies don’t give you that much freedom or flexibility, as they are overly concerned with the perceived value of extra features they’ve created that you don’t need, but for which they can jack up their price.  It’s refreshing and surprising to find a software company like Motive Systems that lacks that attitude.”

Motive Systems — in both its simple solutions to universal file management problems, and its offering of generous functionality within a modest pricing structure — follows a similar corporate philosophy, according to Uhlman.

“I can add metadata tags fluidly to any file and create any kind of workflow I need in M-Files.  Other software companies don’t give you that much freedom or flexibility, as they are overly concerned with the perceived value of extra features they’ve created that you don’t need, but for which they can jack up their price.  It’s refreshing and surprising to find a software company like Motive Systems that lacks that attitude.”

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M-Files dynamic content management solutions are revolutionizing the ECM market by transforming how businesses manage, secure and share information with a unique metadata-powered approach that organizes and processes content based on what it is, rather than where it resides. Thousands of businesses in over 100 countries use M-Files on-premise, in the cloud or in hybrid environments to improve productivity and quality, and to ensure compliance with industry regulations and standards, including companies such as SAS, Elekta and EADS.

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