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Blogs: Jive Talks

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At this point, even my dad has asked me what I think about Google Wave (sorry Dad for any tech-savvy intimations!). Since Wave is in the process of rolling out to a much larger audience of testers and developers, it seemed like an appropriate time to jot down some thoughts about it. But first, an announcement: as widely discussed around the web, Wave uses the XMPP protocol under the hood and in particular works with the Openfire XMPP server (see Wave Federation install docs). Openfire was developed by Jive and we continue to sponsor it as an Open Source project. Up to this point, Openfire has been available under the GPL license. We've moved Openfire to the more liberal Apache 2.0 Open Source license, which is the same license used for the Google Wave Federation project. This change is already reflected in the Openfire source tree and an official release will be made soon. We hope and believe that the more liberal Apache 2.0 license will help unleash a new wave of innovation around Openfire (bad pun gleefully intended).


So, Wave itself -- though the project is still in the early stages (and far from ready for prime-time, especially in an enterprise setting) it's generated an enormous amount of buzz. No doubt a large part of that excitement is due to it being from Google. But more importantly, Wave is pushing the boundaries of what's possible in a web browser with a super rich and real-time user experience. It serves as inspiration to all of us that develop collaboration software. While it's still a bit early for Jive to have an official position on Wave, we're definitely following it closely and the Wave concepts align well with our roadmap. So much has been written about Wave already that I won't attempt to duplicate any of the existing detailed overviews. But I do have my personal three favorite things about Wave:


  1. Wave will help drive adoption of HTML 5 by serving as such a compelling example of what that technology makes possible.
  2. Wave uses XMPP as the back-end protocol. Yes, I'm a nerd for loving a protocol.
  3. Federation is baked-in. This was a visionary move by Google and big win for an open internet in the new world of monolithic web sites/services.


It will be fun to watch where all of this goes.

How was your summer?


As the newest member of Jive's executive team, I spent a good part of my summer Jiving with our incredible customers: a powerful, forward-thinking community that's leading the global shift toward a social business mandate. And I have to share an "ah-hah" moment I had from those conversations: our customers don't just work inside Jive, they love Jive! There's a passion for Jive unlike any other software solution I've been associated with.


And it's really showing up in the traction we're getting for our inaugural community conference: JiveWorld09. Registration is so strong, so early, that we'll most likely be ending registrations next week - a full month before the conference. I'm not complaining, mind you!  In the year of the "non-conference" I'm thrilled our customers are making an exception to tight travel budgets and taking time away from the office to join us in San Francisco.


I'm sure it helps that this not your run-of-the-mill conference around a run-of-the-mill product - and that this is the first opportunity you and your fellow Jivers have had a chance to come together. Just wait until you see who's going to be there: we have a jaw-dropping roster of Jive customers participating as speakers and panelists.


Working inside Jive takes a variety of forms, and we're holding a video contest to encourage our customers to share what it means personally to them and their organization to “Jive Together.” The results will be shown at JiveWorld09 as video mashups and, from what I've seen to date it's nothing short of amazing how innovative our customers are.


If you're still on the fence on attending - perhaps still sifting through a backlog of to do's from your summer - please do register sooner rather than later!


BTW, you may have seen the recent blog post that Jive's CEO - Dave Hersh - and his family are moving to the Bay Area. On behalf of the small (but energetic) group of Bay Area Jivers,we'd like to welcome Dave and his family to the Golden State. We look forward tohaving them - and their discretionary income - help us chip away at California's budget deficit.

This morning the National Journal Group launched 3121, which is powered by Jive. 3121 is a very ambitious project in the public sector – a networking tool designed exclusively for congressional members and staff to help make the legislative process more effective and efficient. Hill staffers can locate and collaborate with colleagues and create personalized news filters using Jive's secure platform.


This news just adds to Jive's momentum in providing secure social solutions for government agencies. Jive SBS already serves as the social collaboration platform at a number of high profile U.S. government projects including the A-Space program, Military Homefront, NASA, and Air Force Medical Service Knowledge Exchange.


My favorite statement about the launch comes from Chris Contakes, chief technology officer of National Journal Group:


"We had two key requirements for the 3121 system: it had to break down the silos that exist between staffers, offices, and chambers, and it had to be secure. Jive is already the Social Business Software standard for several federal departments, and it has an excellent security track record within the U.S. intelligence community. We believe Jive is an excellent choice to help staffers reach new levels of collaboration and cooperation on key legislation."


You can read more about it in Jive's press release on the launch news.

As Jive’s CMO, I have the privilege of blogging about our newest offering, the Jive Market Engagement Solution. I'm confident this solution is going to rock the world of marketers everywhere!


Usually we blog on a new product concurrent with issuing the press release announcing that product. However, in the final moments Monday of preparing the news for release, my time was focused on another developing story at Jive: our first community conference – JiveWorld09 – is on the verge of a sell out!


Now that we’ve creatively added more capacity to JiveWorld, I’d like to share some thoughts about yesterday's announcement and why I'm so excited.


First, the facts: our Market Engagement Solution is a new product that combines the power of buzz monitoring with Jive Social Business Software (SBS). We’ve selected Radian6 – a leading social media monitoring platform for understanding "the big conversation" occurring in the social web – and tightly fused it with Jive SBS. Marketers bring observations from Radian6 into a “Market Space,” a new element of Jive SBS. There, marketers add other observations – perhaps a tweet or blog post – and socialize those observations with colleagues. Think of it as our version of the "War Room," where the right people come together at a moment’s notice. Once a plan of attack is established, actionable Viewpoints are published to help organizations move faster in the moment of pain or opportunity.


And because the solution is available via the cloud, there’s no need to wait behind other initiatives for IT resources.


The time is now for this approach as marketers are in a lather about the increasing velocity of social conversations and are struggling to stay on top of those conversations. When we were preparing for press interviews - more on the market reaction in a moment - our PR team reminded me of the classic I Love Lucy episode where Lucy and Ethel go to work in a candy factory. They manage at first, but you're probably smiling now as you remember how quickly they were buried in a speeding conveyer belt of chocolates. Like Lucy and Ethel, marketers are getting buried in alerts and “helpful” heads-up emails as yet another co-worker asks “I saw some customers twittering that they are dying to have feature X in the product. Should we do it?” And as those emails circulate throughout an organization, people are reminded that “Reply All” is not effective for collaborating on a firestorm or real-time, online sentiment.


At Jive, we are electrified by the responses we’re getting from customers, and the market reaction has been equally electrifying:



For more reactions, please see our News section.


As always, thanks for taking time today to Jive with us. If you haven’t already done so, please register now for JiveWorld. Even though we increased capacity, we’re still limited in the number of additional registrations we can accept and we don’t you want to miss out on seeing Jive's Market Engagement Solution – and all the other powerful capabilities of Jive SBS – up close and personal in San Francisco!

When co-founders Matt Tucker and Bill Lynch started Jive in the dark moments of 2001, they probably couldn’t have imagined that their idea would one day become a trusted solution to government agencies as they tackle some of the big challenges of our time.  8 years later, we’re standing shoulder to shoulder with the U.S. government to bring the power of Social Business Software to the complex task of serving and protecting over 300 million people. 


In today’s press release we reference how our work with the U.S. intelligence community, and organizations like NASA, the U.S. Army, Air Force Medical Services is helping to connect the dots – agency to agency, department to department, people to people and system to system.  While programs like A-Space have gained the buzz- worthy moniker "Facebook for Spies," for the Defense Intelligence Agency, this is serious business. 


Our success speaks to the Federal Government's vision and commitment to following the Presidential call for a more collaborative government.  Our success is also a testament to the strength of Jive’s SBS solution, and the security it offers.


But this is only the beginning. Stay tuned!

Even though I've been using Jive for over two years, I still have those moments at work when I'm reminded, "Wow, getting this project done/question answered/problem solved would have never been possible if I still worked the way I used to."


At the Jive offices, we all have a better appreciation for what it means to work together. Which is why I am really excited about our video contest, "What Does Jive Together Mean To You?", which we launched last week.


We launched this contest because we plan to do a creative mashup for our inaugural community conference, JiveWorld09, that's taking place in late October. (BTW, have you checked out the amazing agenda and customer sessions lined up?)


What does "Jiving together" mean to the companies and pioneers who are leading the effort to integrate the social web into their business environment? We've left the question open-ended purposely because it has to be.  There are infinite variations to this question depending on industry, company lifecycle, culture and initiatives. And you're invited -- whether or not you can make it to the conference -- to post your video in response to ours. Besides the inspiration we hope our customer EMC and our own video will provide, here are some fun videos people have posted about Facebook and Twitter.


We'd love to have you enter the contest. It's also a chance to win a Flip HD Camcorder (shameless promotional plug ).  So what are you waiting for? Can't wait to see what you dream up.



In a bid to make the internet a better place for web developers, there's been a big effort lately to kill IE 6. My favorite part of the story is Microsoft themselves, with a promise to donate food on behalf of people that upgrade from IE6 to IE8:


Picture 12.png


Our UI team regularly curses the large set of workarounds and compromises that IE6 support forces on them. Such is the reality of being an enterprise software vendor -- we still have many customers using the browser as a corporate standard (and believe it or not, there are some real reasons to delay the upgrade due to the expense of re-writing internal webapps that were specifically targeted at IE6).


On the other hand, I talk to plenty of customers and prospects that are clamoring for us to keep pushing the boundary of what's possible with social software in a web browser, especially after they've seen and tested Google Wave. Dropping IE6 will let us develop richer features faster and with less bugs. We're already committed to supporting it in our next release, but here's my question: should Jive drop official IE6 support in our release after next? No promises on timing of that release of course, but we're likely talking about late next Spring. We'll be conducting a more official survey, but your non-scientific opinion counts too! Leave a blog comment or tweet me @matttucker. And, cheers to a better internet for everyone.

Are we really in the midst of a market rebound? I'll let my broker figure that one out. But as I look at the market, one thing has become clear to me. A broad cross-section of companies see the window of opportunity -- the potential to change the way they work so they can perform better, no matter the economic conditions. This is why the application of Social Business Software has become much more interesting and strategic as of late. Just look at the Lufthansa and Toshiba announcements we've made in the last few weeks.


But to take advantage of that opening, they know they have to move aggressively and accurately. That's why we are working so hard on new innovations that will expand the Jive offering in exciting ways. It's also why we're investing aggressively in all areas of the company - products, services, sales and marketing. And it's a big reason why there are more and more Jivers around in the U.S. and in Europe. In fact our "new" Bay Area office has expanded so fast that we're opening a bigger one as soon as possible.


On a personal note, my family and I recently recognized another window of opportunity. As I find myself back and forth between Portland and Palo Alto every week, we've decided to move back down to the Bay Area where my wife is from and where we spent many years. And as Jive has continued to expand aggressively, our presence in the Bay Area is becoming a bigger part of our growth (employees, customers, partners, and investors). Portland will remain Jive's physical headquarters -- our Portland team is absolutely incredible and will continue to be a big part of our growth.


Where I live has become less important as I spend a lot of time on the road visiting customers, prospective customers and partners. Jive is a distributed company that is great at working across geographical boundaries - we practice what we preach in a very deep way and use social software to stay connected. Our executive team lives in Portland, California, Phoenix and Texas, and we're hiring the best people we can find wherever they are located. As we like to say, "our real headquarters are in Brewspace" (our internal instance of Jive).


Irrespective of my base of operations, I will be spending significant time in both offices - when I am not traveling elsewhere. And I'll be completing the move soon to try to get our kids into the school year as quickly as possible.


Stay tuned for some exciting things to come from Jive. And to learn everything from the top Jive experts, join us at JiveWorld on October 27-29 in San Francisco.

The past few months have flown by, due in no small part to how heads down we’ve been. In addition to pulling off another record sales quarter, the product team has been busy working on an amazing release and we’ve all been working hard on some huge strategic projects around SBS. So as the summer heat is in full swing and we have a minute to smell the roses, I wanted to share and reflect on some of the great things that have happened over the course of the last three months here at Jive.


  • SAP partnership - The Jive ecosystem is growing rapidly, through ground-breaking partnerships with companies like SAP. We're integrating their BusinessObjects OnDemand platform with our Social Business Software to create a whole new level of understanding around online community dynamics. I have seen the potential here and it is absolutely inspiring. Expect more in the coming months as we unite world-class software with social technologies.

  • Jive Express - At Jive, we take cloud computing very seriously, but are doing it in a pragmatic way that allows our customers to adopt whatever model works for their deployment. A big step in this direction was Jive Express, which lets teams or departments get up and running fast, in a cost effective model for smaller deployments within large organizations. They also really like that we've developed this so they can migrate to on-premise if needed, or easily migrate to the full-blown version of our Employee Engagement Center for increased levels of customization and company-wide deployments.

  • Palo Alto - I just got back from three excellent weeks in the Bay Area where I got to work out of our new office for awhile and assist with some recruiting and customer visits. Outside of the long commute from Mill Valley to Palo Alto, it was great to be with the team down there and get to see so many of our customers. “Jive South” serves as a nice complement to our phenomenal team in Portland as it puts us closer to our rapidly growing customer base in Silicon Valley, as well as provides access to even more top notch talent.

  • A customer, Premier Farnell - I'd also like to take a moment to highlight Premier Farnell, to showcase some of the great uses-cases of SBS. They are a multi-channel distributor of electronic components, who built a public community for electronic design engineers. With support from their supplier community and industry experts, the Element14 Community brings together all of the information electronic design engineers need to be successful -- from design conception to production. Instead of searching a variety of vendor websites, engineers can solicit design feedback and component suggestions from trusted peers in this community. And, when engineers are ready to make a purchase, they can do this seamlessly via element14 instead of an assortment of vendor sites.


Q3 won’t be restful either to say the least. Lots to do on the product front, lots of new customers going live and we’ll all be getting ready for JiveWorld. Hope to see you there!

As Jive's new CMO, I couldn't think of a better topic for my first blog post than to announce JiveWorld09, our inaugural community conference.


When I joined Jive, the team was assessing the potential of convening the Jive community for an in-person event. My initial reaction was excitement tinged with concern. After all, with travel budgets being slashed, 2009 appeared to be the year of the "non-conference".


But once I became a Jiver and delved more deeply into the company, I saw existing customers using Jive to push corporate performance to new limits, despite a brutal business climate. I also saw a jaw-dropping roster of new customers propelling our record growth and contributing valuable insights to the Social Business Software dialogue.


There's every reason to believe that Social Business Software is at a tipping point, which is why hosting this community conference this year makes absolute sense. It's our way of rewarding customers for their unwillingness to be complacent in the face of a precarious marketplace. The best way to thank you is to host a community conference designed to empower our customers to achieve even greater business outcomes.


That's why JiveWorld09 is anything but your run-of-the-mill conference. Sure, you'll hear from Jive, but only because we're focusing our presentations around arming you for success. But the main focus is on you and your fellow community members, who will share the stage with Jive equally if not moreso. Most important, JiveWorld09 is about creating and capitalizing on the energy that comes from being together with our customers. Learning, sharing, questioning, experimenting, discovering -- JiveWorld09 is where you'll do all of this and more -- together.


We recognize how much everyone is watching their budgets right now. We also recognize that you may need to "go the extra mile" for approval to attend. That's why we're pulling out all the stops to make participating not only worth it, but also affordable.

  • We selected a city (San Francisco) that's home to many Jive customers. It also features an abundance of low-cost air options with new carriers serving both San Francisco International Airport and Oakland International airport.
  • We selected an awesome property - the W Hotel San Francisco - and negotiated a great rate of only $195 a night.
  • The second day of the conference wraps up just after lunch, so those of you flying from the central or east coasts can travel home without incurring an additional hotel night.
  • We've also kept the conference fee low -- very low, we believe for the value you'll receive -- and are offering an unbelievable discount if you register by August 28.
  • Plus, if you're selected as either a speaker or an award winner, we'll waive the conference fee (hint hint, apply for either -- or both!).


We're looking at every aspect of the conference agenda to ensure you leave armed with the information you need to inject Social Business Software at a more strategic level into your business. The timing is perfect, especially as many companies are moving into the planning cycle for 2010 and updating strategic plans to to not only survive, but to thrive, in the years ahead. And we're confident you'll Thrive on Jive. To register now or learn more, visit the JiveWorld09 site.


I'd love your ideas on how to make our inaugural JiveWorld a tremendous success, and look forward to seeing you in San Francisco.


Jive at Engineering Events

Posted by matt Employee Jul 7, 2009

We've been participating in and sponsoring several great engineering events in both Portland and the Bay Area that I wanted to highlight:


Recent Events



Portland JavaScript Admirers, June 24 -- a group of smart Javascript hackers that meets monthly to discuss cutting-edge Javascript techniques. We provided beer and pizza and look forward to participating in the future meetups.


Portland Cloud Camp, June 30 -- Portland's own iteration of the popular CloudCamp unconference series, which Jive sponsored. There were lots of great discussions and it's super relevant content for Jive given our expanding investment in cloud computing and specifically Amazon AWS. I also enjoyed attending the San Francisco CloudCamp on June 24.


Upcoming Events


CHIFOO, July 8 -- the Computer-Human Interaction Forum Of Oregon hosts monthly meetings at Jive's offices to discuss user experience, usability and interaction design.


Refresh Portland, July 23 -- a monthly event for designers interested in refreshing the creative, technical, and professional culture in the Portland area that's hosted at the Jive office.



We're adding more events to our calendar and are always interested in helping technical organizations in either Portland or the Bay Area with location space (or beer sponsorship!)


Jive's Bay Area Office

Posted by matt Employee Jun 18, 2009

jive_palo_alto.pngI'm pleased to report that Jive's Bay Area office is officially open! We're still getting unpacked and the office is definitely still un-finished (note the ugly cubes that were already there). But the Palo Alto location already feels like Jive and is going to be a great place to work. Some of the good and/or interesting highlights so far:


  • Explaining to people that there is in fact commercial space in the Town & Country center (and it's even nice)
  • Occasionally not being able to tell the difference between Paly High and Stanford students while at Pete's
  • The same snacks as the Portland office (including Red Bull and beer) -- definitely helps with the late-night coding sessions
  • The office "running club", which consists of me and Angela until we can hire more people that like running.


Why Palo Alto?


We're expanding our engineering team and looking for great people in the Bay (and Portland!). If you're passionate about social software and building incredible products for the world's biggest companies then we hope you'll reach out. You'll be joining the growing group in Palo Alto and the larger Jive team that's leading the social business software revolution. Please check out the job reqs for application information or drop me an email or DM.

When I first interviewed Ben a few months ago, it only took a few minutes before I was trying to sign him up. Finding a good marketing exec is one of the toughest challenges out there -- very few people have the gift to bring big ideas together with an execution mindset, the ability to build a category while working closely with the field, partners and customers; and most importantly, a talent for making the people around them better. In short, Ben is a hugely talented leader who brings the energy and focus needed to put more distance between us and the competition in the Social Business Software (SBS) category.


Ben will be responsible for Jive's global marketing strategy, in addition to spearheading strategic partnerships and corporate development activities. He is joining us at a pivotal time in our evolution where, despite the brutal economy, we continue to post record-breaking quarters and demonstrate market momentum. Ben's track record in scaling companies for growth and success, and capitalizing on unique opportunities, is going to be pivotal in our strategy.


Before joining Jive, Ben was the Chief Marketing Officer for Interwoven, one of the fastest growing companies in the web content optimization market, through their recent acquisition by Autonomy. He has also held executive management positions for technology leaders including Siebel Systems, Onyx Software, and Clarify (where he worked alongside fellow executive Tony Zingale, now a Jive Board member). In addition, Ben has led product marketing, corporate marketing, field marketing, and partner teams for both emerging companies as well as billion-dollar organizations, and has been very closely involved with the industry analysts. You can learn more about his credentials on LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ben-kiker/0/167/7a4).


You'll be hearing more from Ben soon (he'll have a blog shortly) as we get him ramped up!

dashboard.pngToday we launched Jive Express, a cloud service that lets enterprise business users get up and running with social business software within minutes. The cost is $3 a user/month and we're making the first three months or 100 users free for qualified companies. Departments and cross-company teams have never had such easy access to a collaborative social software product this powerful. It's the same incredibly rich platform that underlies our Jive SBS product along with features specifically targeted for teams like the success dashboard pictured at right. (Want to know how Jive Express stacks up to our full-blown Jive SBS platform? See the quick matrix). Other than being jazzed about the product and the fact that I got to be on the team at Jive that built it, I'm also excited about our first foray into cloud computing and the strategy we're building around it.


How is Jive approaching the cloud? We believe large organizations will embrace the cloud but that it will be a multi-year process. We want to be there to help with the transition in a pragmatic, realistic way. In the short-term, that means making it easy to transistion on and off the cloud using our single tenant architecture (see my last blog for more on single tenant cloud apps). We've used virtualization to drive amazing levels of cost efficiency while providing maximum security and data isolation. We know that enterprise companies are still in the intial stages of cloud adoption, so we're making it very easy to start there but then move to on-premise or to our more traditional hosted environment as the implementation scales. This hybrid approach is unique and we believe it's the best approach for enterprise cloud adoption. To implement all of this, we chose Amazon's AWS service as the backend cloud provider. Working with them has been a fantastic experience so far and they seem to be well on their way to solving many of the enterprise cloud concerns around security and compliance.


I plan to blog a lot more details about how we built the Jive Express service as well as our ongoing cloud ventures in the future. Also check out my interview with whurley at Infoworld for more details. In the meantime, be sure to check out the Jive Express site and signup.


You may have seen my recent blog post on Jive's New York Times article (a lot of former schoolmates did apparently as I got deluged on Facebook about the tattoo). In addition to the tattoo, I also mentioned that we had "one of our biggest quarters ever and we have never been stronger." Now that the books are officially closed, let me expand on it:


  • We had our best sales quarter in the history of the company.
  • We were cash flow positive (for the second quarter in a row).
  • We signed up 70 new customers.
  • We expanded our Bay Area presence with a new office in Palo Alto.
  • Over 100% year-over-year revenue growth.


I don't want all my blogs to be "rah rah" regurgitated press releases, but I do want to share how thrilled I am with our team and with what we were able to accomplish. It was a Herculean effort to have our biggest product release ever with SBS and to add such a huge roster of great, forward-thinking clients, all in the context of the worst downturn we have seen.


No new tattoos for this quarter's results, but I'm all ears on ideas to celebrate future quarters.


Thanks for your continued support.

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