StarCite has upgraded the architecture behind its Web-based meetings management technology tools, launching a new platform called Nexus, which the company says makes it easier to adapt its products to organizations’ needs and to integrate with their existing systems.
“We deal with a lot of enterprise customers, Fortune 1000 companies that have [specific] ways that they want to do business,” says Connor Gray, chief technology officer at the Philadelphia-based company. The Nexus platform “has given us a lot more ability to say ‘yes’” without building a custom system, he says.
“Historically, we’ve always focused on best practices—how should you be doing business. In some ways, that’s very prescriptive,” he says. “Well, not everyone wants to run their business the way I think they ought to run it.” The Nexus platform, Gray says, “opens up another paradigm in terms of the extent of flexibility we’re able to offer. We will be able to meet a lot of unique needs, which is very difficult to do if you’re just trying to build everything off of one giant, monolithic [system]. The advantage of one big monolithic [system] is that it’s all there together, but it becomes like hardened concrete. Over time, it becomes very difficult to change.”
StarCite’s meeting management tools include modules for attendee management, sourcing suppliers and sending electronic requests for proposals, budgeting, reporting, and more. Gray points to budgets, meeting profiles, and the user interface as some of the areas that companies often want to customize rather than adapt to a technology tool’s predefined systems. The new architecture “is constructed in a way that those types of changes are anticipated,” he says.
Along with the Nexus architecture, StarCite has introduced a more “Google-like” engine in its supplier search tool, giving users a more intuitive system that returns results based on relevancy.