Microsoft Updates Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program

Microsoft BackOffice

Market Bulletin


Microsoft Corp.



June 1, 1998

Microsoft Updates Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program

Working With ISVs to Build Better Solutions

At Tech
·Ed 98 in New Orleans, Microsoft Corp. unveiled the new Designed for Microsoft® BackOffice® Logo Program. The program is unique because it focuses on the customer benefit derived from using the Microsoft BackOffice family of products rather than simply evaluating the technology itself. Microsoft is extending the notion of
“easy to build, manage, and deploy,”
previously associated with BackOffice, to incorporate solutions being delivered by recognized independent software vendors (ISVs). By establishing a framework for working with ISVs, the new program will help customers use some of the best possible experience on the BackOffice platform.

The Designed for BackOffice Logo Program has been successfully adopted by ISVs and original equipment manufacturer (OEMs) since it began in 1995. There are currently more than 620 applications from 400 companies of varying sizes that have earned the BackOffice logo. Applications carrying the logo span many different industries and scale from the smallest businesses to the largest enterprises. With the tremendous adoption of the Windows NT® Server operating system and the BackOffice family in the past 12 months, there has been a remarkable increase (300 percent) in applications carrying the Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo.

Today, Microsoft is looking to increase the value of this BackOffice logo for the end user. The parameters identified for ensuring customer benefits are integration, consistency, quality and confidence.

Defining the New Program

The Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program has both new and updated requirements for ISVs. The updated guidelines have been more clearly defined and strengthened to focus on delivering the intended customer benefit. For example, an updated requirement called
Windows NT Authentication (unified log-on) has been improved to ensure that customers need to sign on only one time across their organization. This means the customer experiences a greater level of security and productivity with lower overall administrative costs.

In addition, the new requirements introduced in the program will take advantage of new technologies and standards that have been introduced. For instance, ISVs will need to incorporate Windows NT Directory Services into their products, thereby simplifying administration across distributed systems, improving applications performance and reducing the network traffic.

The new Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program establishes a framework to unify ISV client/server branding efforts from Microsoft. As new products and technologies come under this new simplified program, ISVs will not face varying sets of requirements, duplication in testing, and the costs associated with supporting the multiple branding programs. The new program includes basic core requirements that provide a foundation for ISVs and hardware manufacturers. In addition to meeting the core requirements, ISVs also have the option to be evaluated for other marketing programs and benefits. For instance, ISVs can have their products evaluated for compliance for specialized areas (such as the enterprise or small business) or technologies (such as Office services or transaction processing).

The updated logo program will serve as a roadmap for ISVs developing future applications based on Windows NT 5.0, BackOffice 5.0 and Office. The guidelines for the new program, while providing detailed technical specifications for making their applications an integral part of the Microsoft BackOffice and Office platforms, will continue to focus on the following core customer values:

  • Applications undergo independent testing in a lab and will work in a known and predictable fashion. The updated and new requirements, along with their associated validation tests, are designed to be even more stringent so that customer
    “value”
    is achieved.

  • Existing APIs, new technology and industry standards are implemented in a similar fashion. By standardizing the implementation, inconsistencies and irregularities across products from different vendors are minimized.

  • Existing products, services, UI and components, are leveraged to improve management, increase interoperability and enhance ease of use. By doing so, the ISV can take advantage of reusable components, reduce development costs and improve time to market.

  • Customers can have confidence that ISV applications and the BackOffice family will work together in an integral fashion. It is only by working with ISVs that customers can obtain the complete solution to address their needs.

Schedule for Rollout of New Program

The proposed requirements for the new Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program will be posted to http://msdn.microsoft.com/certification/ on June 4, 1998, following the announcement at TechoEd 98. For a period of 60 days, interested developers can download the proposal and provide their feedback to Microsoft by completing an online form on the Web site. On Aug. 15, 1998, the revised requirements incorporating these comments will be posted to the same Web site. Compliance with the updated requirements will be rolled out in three phases; the first is scheduled to begin on Nov. 1, 1998. The additional requirements will be introduced based on the availability of Windows NT 5.0 and BackOffice 5.0, respectively.


Conclusion

The success of the Designed for Microsoft BackOffice Logo Program is a clear message that branding efforts indeed matter to ISVs and customers. With the new program and requirements, Microsoft recognizes that customers need more from an ISV branding program than simply an evaluation of technology. Customers continually look to Microsoft’s leadership in working with ISVs to build complete solutions that speak to the core values of quality, consistency and integration. With these core values, customers can have confidence in products and services provided by companies carrying the Designed for Microsoft BackOffice logo.

Microsoft, BackOffice, the BackOffice logo, the Microsoft logo and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

The information contained in this document represents the current view of Microsoft Corp. on the issues discussed as of the date of publication. Because Microsoft must respond to changing market conditions, it should not be interpreted to be a commitment on the part of Microsoft, and Microsoft cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information presented after the date of publication.

This document is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS DOCUMENT.

For more information, press only:

Phyllis McNeice, Waggener Edstrom, (425) 637-9097, phyllism@wagged.com

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