Microsoft Office Accelerators

By Deane Barker on September 22, 2003

Office hunts for new niches: This is an interesting trend for Microsoft, and one we’ve written about before. It involves add-ons that customize a product for a certain vertical.

The first seven products from the Accelerator Program will focus on specific business segments and tasks: sales proposals, personnel recruiting, quality-management projects for Six Sigma (an efficiency theory made popular by General Electric), financial reports, compliance projects for new Sarbanes-Oxley Act accounting rules, business scorecards and financial scenarios.

When I was working with Documentum, they had the same thing. You could buy an add-on for their document management server that would instantly turn it into a framework for managing documentation related to getting FDA approval for new drugs. They’d obviously spent a lot of time with domain experts learning exactly how that process worked, and the system probably knew more about it than you did.

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Comments

  1. The concept sounds similar to the plug-ins that Adobe & others (Illustrator, Photoshop, Freehand, QuarkXPress, InDesign, etc…) use to add features to a core application. Kinda like being able to add tools to your pocket knife.

    If MS is smart they’ll make the standards available to third-party developers (but I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for that.)

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