HCL Connections Review

The three features I use the most are communities, activities, and files.


What is most valuable?

The entire suite of features is very important to me. The three features I use the most are communities, activities, and files.

IBM Connections Pink is a journey and not a destination!

IBM Connections Pink means leaving the IBM WebSphere backend and moving to the Docker.

IBM Connections Pink means you can choose where your application and data resists, i.e., either on the local, private, public cloud or a mix of all those.

IBM Connections Pink means leaving Java and moving to Node.js.

IBM Connections Pink means leaving DB2/Oracle/MS SQL and moving to a single, more powerful database platform - MongoDB.

IBM Connections Pink means introducing IBM Watson as your personal assistance.

IBM Connections Pink means a new way of collaboration, like you have never seen before.

How has it helped my organization?

There is no more a discussion of WHERE to store documents and where to find your corporate information. It is centrally stored and has the perfect search functionality. It’s easy to find.

What needs improvement?

The ability to use it as a hybrid solution. IBM has started the Connections PINK journey, and the hybrid option will be part of it.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using the solution for six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There were never any issues with stability. It’s fully clustered.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

When you choose to use it on-prem, you have to decide the scalability based on the usage. It can be easily expanded by adding more servers. The cloud is another story and is always perfect in performance.

How is customer service and technical support?

I would give technical support ratings as follows:

  • Level 1: 6/10
  • Level 2: 8/10
  • Level 3: 10/10

Level 1 sometimes seems as if they are part of a call center. When they transfer the call to Level 2, we see that the support gets better.

Level 3 is comprised of specialists most of the time, and sometimes even developers. I often ask for Level 3 directly in the initial call.

Which solutions did we use previously?

I am a true IBM enthusiast, so the answer is NO. But I am aware of other products and have seen them. Still, I would choose IBM Connections.

How was the initial setup?

The latest two versions are easily to install and are well documented.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

IBM is still cheaper in the end. IBM Connections runs out-of-the-box. Other vendors need customizations in order to get what you need.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I am part of an IBM business partnership, so other vendors are not an option.

What other advice do I have?

Connections will be shipped soon and contains Orient Me, a new dashboard with IBM Watson technology. See Watson as your personal assistant and whom who you can get advised in your daily work.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Yes, we are a business partner with IBM. We build applications on and for IBM Connections for the on-prem and Cloud versions. I am an IBM Champion ICS 2017.
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