12/29/2010 ReadWriteEnterprise

12/29/2010 ReadWriteEnterprise

By Klint Finley

As 2010 draws to a close we’re taking a look at a few enterprise startups that’s our promise and that we haven’t covered on ReadWriteEnterprise.

Jama Software‘s flagship product isContour, a Web-based requirements management application for development teams and consultants. Contour’s killer app is Review Center, a collaboration module that enables users to discuss requirements and incorporate feedback into a project.

In our recent article on ITproject failure, Michael Krigsman identified a lack of consensus about project goals and requirements as a key point of failure. Teams may delay reaching a consensus on a particular issue only to have it blow up in their faces at a later point. Anything that can help teams reach a consensus about a project will be well received in the enterprise.

We’ve written about the idea of adding a social layer to software several times. We’re particularly fond of Sameer Patel’s example:

Decisions are not always black and white in the Enterprise context. To me, the ultimate promise of social computing lies in improved process execution outcomes. What I’ve been looking for is an in-context and even onscreen utility inside enterprise process apps that helps you answer:”I’m not sure” OR “What’s the best selection from that drop-down menu” OR “Who knows more about this than I?” OR “Can I first take a vote from a few smarty pants before I commit, please?

Social requirements gathering makes sense and is a practical use of social media in the enterprise.It’s also nice to see social features right inside the requirements management application and not in some entirely separate location. However, we would like to see Review Center integrate with other social enterprise applications in the future.

Jama is an angel-funded company based in Portland, Oregon. It was founded in 2006and has several high-profile customers including the Department of Defense, ING and PayPal.


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