Appian Cloud – Drinking Our Own Champagne
A common practice among software developers is “eating their own dog food”; which means using their own software in an effort to understand areas where the biggest improvements are needed. Multiple organizations have taken this notion one step further and make the entire company “drink their own champagne”. These organizations try to become a laboratory where employees are asked to use their software internally, not only to test it before it reaches the hands of the customer, but also to get them involved in the definition of the product road-map.
At Appian, we have made our Business Process Management (BPM) Platform the operational backbone of our key processes. This is particularly true for our Appian Cloud operations, where we use Appian to orchestrate all our processes. Whether these customer facing, such as trial management, as well as internal, such as compliance audits. It has been always clear to the team that Appian is the perfect tool for our mission critical processes.
From the moment a new prospect Requests a Trial, an Appian process is started for our business development organization to review each request. If the request is approved, the process automatically initiates a customer profile, configures the user account and sends out a welcome e-mail to the user who requested the trial. All of this is done without the intervention of our engineers. The process keeps track of the duration of the trial and notifies prospects accordingly about their trial expiration. Moreover, the process also posts the information about a new trial to our Tempo feed, where we are able to collaborate and discuss about the new opportunity.
Our BPM platform has also proven to be a very powerful tool in the arena of regulatory compliance. We have built a set of processes specifically created to ensure our compliance with different security and privacy regulations for our cloud operations. These processes enable us to systematically, and efficiently, perform the necessary audits, reviews, and record keeping required to guarantee a high quality service for our cloud customers.
Many of the BPM applications used in our Appian Cloud operations integrate with multiple external systems, relying mostly in Appian’s built-in integration capabilities. They constantly evolve to incorporate the new features and enhancements in our product. Moreover, the systems where these applications reside are typically the first systems where our new releases are deployed, to make sure that, if any issues are introduced, they are addressed before it ever reaches our customers.
Throughout the process of building this framework of BPM applications, the Cloud team has had and important role shaping our product. Some of the new features and enhancement part of Appian today are the direct result of making Appian the backbone of our Cloud operations.
Marco Lara, Cloud and Community Services