What is our primary use case?
We have grown through acquisition so we have a number of different divisions throughout our company. There was an initiative to develop standard operating procedures to be used across all the divisions. We needed a way to be able to present the information to our employees in an easy to consume manner. We use Casewise to be able to capture that information and store it and we use Evolve to be able to present it in a user-friendly way, for consumption.
How has it helped my organization?
The product is a repository for our procedures and what it really helped improve are the processes that we want in place to gather the standard operating procedures. As part of the governance around that, we had a team that represented all the divisions and we had to get to consensus on a way to document a procedure that would work across all the divisions; to get some sort of standardization and agreement. The Evolve tool was a real impetus to have that happen. To put it into the tool, they had to go through that governance process, to really do some standardization on our processes and procedures. Then we were able to put them in the tool. Now, in projects across the US, they're able to find the standard operating procedures to help them on their jobs.
The process of capturing all the standard operating procedures forced us to come to an agreement across all the divisions, as far as standardization goes. That was really huge. It was something that was really needed. Going through that effort enabled us to become more a single company, as opposed to independent divisions where each had its own way of doing things.
The solution provides output for users across our whole organization. Now, there's a website that everybody has access to and they can look at the policies in our company and at our procedures, including the application catalog and the different parts of our enterprise organization.
What is most valuable?
I really like the way it's not just independent content. There is a model behind it. It's really nice that the Evolve front-end, as it builds a website, keeps those relationships in mind. You can even go to a procedure and see all the applications that are related to it. Then you can go into that application and see all the standard operating procedures that that application is a part of. It's just very connected. I really like that it provides an object-relationship view of your organization.
Our workforce uses tablets and mobile phones while in the field. Evolve's responsive web design allows access to the information in an intuitive manner across all devices.
What needs improvement?
I would like it to be easier to make changes in development/testing and then deploy them into production more easily; especially when you have multiple web servers. It would be nice to make a change and then have it propagate to the production servers in a more automated fashion.
I wouldn't mind seeing some improvements in the way Communicator for Word formats the text when data from the model is merged with a word template.
For how long have I used the solution?
We started the project of implementing erwin a little over five years ago.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It seems pretty stable. We don't have very many issues with it. Since everything was set up and it was put in production, it has been pretty stable.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We have multiple web servers haven't had any issues with the scalability.
It has already been rolled out to everybody in the company, so I don't know if we will be increasing usage. About 2,500 users touch the content of the solution as part of their daily roles in our organization. We have one person responsible for maintenance of the solution, the solution's architect.
How are customer service and technical support?
Erwin's technical support for this product is very good. They're very responsive and they take ownership of the issues. I've been really pleased with their support.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We used Word documents in a SharePoint library so it wasn't a very easy-to-use system. We went with erwin because we liked the flexibility of being able to create the objects with the attributes and relationships that fit our organization. We also liked the usability that the Evolve product provides as a front-end interface that could be used on desktops and mobile devices.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup was pretty straightforward. You can do a lot of customization, so you can get pretty deep into it. But it did not seem overly complex to me.
The project itself took about nine months, but a lot of that was gathering the content, not just the deployment of applications.
We did everything in a development environment and then, once we tested it, we made the changes to the production environment.
We had held in-person training and published micro-learning videos to help with rollout.
What about the implementation team?
We had help from Casewise professional services on the initial modeling of the organization with the tool. We also used a third-party for some advanced customization but most of the deployment was done internally with help from their very supportive help desk.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
The licensing enables you to differentiate between people who edit the content and the people who consume it. We are able to keep the licensing costs down by keeping the "contributor" licenses to a minimum, and we then just roll out the content in a read-only version for the rest of our users. They're able to view the content with just a Social license.
What other advice do I have?
Think about the overall processes and governance of your company. If you're trying to do it as a business management system, just getting to consensus on the content may be the most challenging aspect. You have to plan for enough time to get build the content before you can actually put it into Casewise.
Also, think through the object model and the relationships. Try to get that done correctly upfront. It's better to put enough design and thought upfront and it will pay dividends down the line.
We would like to use the solution's collaborative web modeling capability, but we took a more document centric approach to start with. We would like to build process maps to be able to visually describe our processes in a future phase.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?