I’ve spent the last few years watching the meteoric rise of cloud content management vendor Box. Their approach has been to empower individual groups or business units within an organization to collaborate more effectively around their content and then to expand their presence within the organization. The “land and expand” strategy is a valid one, but one which puts some specific requirements on the vendor in terms of fitting in with the needs of corporate IT. Box is announcing a swathe of updates today that help with some of these functional areas.Box currently has 11 million users across 120000 businesses – they’ve already signed enterprises such as Avaya, Lennar Corporation, MGM Resorts International, Netflix, Stanford University, and Webcor Builders and this release aims to increase that enterprise velocity.
So what’s coming?
New Enterprise Administrator Tools
- Advanced Admin Console & Enterprise-wide Search: giving more granular controls and visibility regarding folder and file access from within a single command center in the admin console.
- Mobile Security Settings: new, granular mobile security settings to ensure content is protected regardless of access device. Available
- Multiple Email Domain Support: admins can provision accounts for more than one managed domain
- Email Archive & eDiscovery: new archiving functionality for regulated industries, admins can now archive and log activities
New Box Enterprise Licensing Agreement
Box has also introduced a new Enterprise License Agreement (ELA) for new and existing customers deploying Box to their entire organization. Available today, the Box ELA offers organizations predictable pricing over the lifetime of a multi-year contract, saving businesses money and simplifying the management of account contracts.
While Box has been quick to talk up its success within enterprise, the fact is that deployments across entire enterprises were few and far between. despite the hand waving about millenials, bottom-up adoption and the consumerization of IT, large enterprises require granular administration control over all the tools their users have access to – the admin tools help ease this pain point and hence lessen the barriers to entry. More importantly however is the licensing changes. In talking with enterprise IT staffers I have often been told that, while Box is a great product, the lack of visibility and clarity over enterprise licensing is a show stopper. An ELA that works across the entire enterprise and gives IT predictable pricing no matter how large the deployment is, will do much to reduce the resistance that corporate IT feels towards tools such as Box.
(Cross-posted @ The Diversity Blog - SaaS, Cloud & Business Strategy)