Frequently Asked Questions
WORKetc (the company)
- How did the company start?
WORKetc officially started in 2006 building discrete web tools for a number of clients as a company called Veetro. By 2008 we had started to identify common app requirements among our customers and started work on a consolidated “business management platform” changing our name at the same time to WORKetc.
It is safe to say our first version of the software was not the roaring success we expected, even though it attracted just over 500 businesses. The technology just was not available to deliver the speedy, slick app experience we were chasing.
Around the same time we released version 1, broadband suddenly become ubiquitous and more modern web browsers allowed for “in page” loading known as Ajax.
It was these advances that drove us back to the drawing board. Starting from absolute scratch we spent the next 18 months programming and released a brand new platform late in 2009.
Since then we’ve added more than 1500 customers from 28 countries to the platform and stuck to a schedule that sees almost daily releases and every few months a major upgrade.
- Who owns WORKetc?
The company is 70% owned by Daniel Barnett – you connect with Daniel at Linkedin. The remaining 30% is owned by early believers and developers.
Why this is good for you:
- We are a private company.
- We call the shots which means we’re not chasing quarterly profit targets or working to keep investors and V.C's smiling
- We’re here solely to build a great product, help other small businesses and of course turn a decent profit.
- What is WORKetc focussed on? What is its mandate?
Our focus is is simply:
- Continuously build a better product.
- Provide a level of customer support that we would be happy to receive ourselves.
When it comes to building a better product, it is important to know that WORKetc is the biggest user of WORKetc. We use WORKetc to manage WORKetc, across 9 time zones and 3 continents, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. So when we improve WORKetc "the product", we’re also improving the bottom line of WORKetc "the business". It is fundamentally in our best interest to always be making WORKetc better.
When it comes to customer support, it is our belief that having a great product is only half the story (possibly even less). Great customer support is what makes the product memorable.
- Is the company profitable, stable and in it for the long haul?
WORKetc is self-funded with no debt (not even a credit card!). We don’t answer to investors or venture capitalists and are masters of our own destiny. With over 1500 growing businesses depending on WORKetc for their success comes immense responsibility.
To ensure we live up to this challenge we ensure we are always fiscally responsible. Our revenue comes from a subscription product meaning we charge a whole lot of companies a little bit of money, automatically every month.
If we billed "X" dollars last month, odds are that we’ll bill "X" dollars this month and then some. And we rarely have businesses with more than 5 staff leave us, our customers are long term customers.
What this means is that we have regular and guaranteed income stream.
This allows us to easily budget and remain fiscally responsible. We don’t borrow money, we always pay all our due accounts within 48hrs and maintain a contingency account to keep us running in the event of some major catastrophe (such as a complete failure of the banking system!).
WORKetc is stable, profitable and completely focussed on always improving the product.
- Where is the WORKetc team based?
WORKetc is a micro-multinational company, meaning our team works remotely across many different cities, countries and continents.
The CEO of WORKetc, Daniel Barnett, splits his time between San Francisco and Sydney. The CTO is based in Melbourne, Australia.
We have support people in Los Angeles and San Francisco in the USA and in Essex, United Kingdom and Auckland, New Zealand.
The development team can be found in Halifax in Canada, Cheng Du in China and Veliko Tyrnovo in Bulgaria.
Why do this?
- WORKetc is a 24 hour a day, 7 days a week business. By having key people spread across the globe we can ensure continuous product development and continuous customer support. And at the same time we do away with the cost of an expensive office and inefficiencies of commuting.
- The challenge of course is communicating and managing projects across so many time zones, which we use WORKetc to help us stay on top of everything.
- We use WORKetc to manage WORKetc. We “eat our own dogfood” as Google likes to say or, as we prefer, "we drink our own Champagne".
- Where are your customers based?
At last count we had paying customers from 28 countries including USA, Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, India, China, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Singapore, Malaysia, Ireland, Mexico, Spain and more.
- How many customers do you have?
We recently tipped over 1000 business customers, equating to roughly 15,000 individual users. (April 2012)
- What industries do your customers represent?
WORKetc is a platform specifically for growing businesses and remote teams. It is not targeted at any particularly industry and its tools suitable for all businesses.
The more common companies that use WORKetc come from these industries:
- Business services such as accounting practices, marketing firms, advertising agencies, legal and secretarial
- Technology services businesses such as MSP’s, software developers, web site designers, search engine marketers, It help and support desks
- Consultancies such as engineering, environmental and management consultants
- Building services, construction and real estate
- Mining, exploration and mining services
- Product development and Intellectual Property oriented businesses
- How come I have never heard from you?
We are focussed on a) building a better product and b) delivering real customer support. At the moment we’d rather put all our attention and resources into accomplishing this. Plus we know that as we work toward this goal, our customers are going to start speaking for us.
So why spend money on a retainer with a top PR firm when our customers are already talking about us? Here are just two of many very real examples:
“Loving you guys more and more!”
“As always your updates are here to impress... This is simply the best all round saas ive used, the development process behind it is consistent in making my day to day tasks shorter… Thank you very much…”
- What does the future hold? Where is the company headed?
Our product development goal is to build a complete, intuitive business management platform for growing businesses.
To this end we are heavily invested in research and development and invite our customers to help us build ideas through our active Feature Suggestion forum.
Also – every six month we publish a public roadmap that shows our customers what we have achieved over the last 6 months and what we’re aiming to achieve over the next 6 months. You can view recent road maps here:
• Roadmap 2012
• Roadmap late 2011
WORKetc (the product)
- What exactly is it?
WORKetc is a collection of integrated software tools that provides small business with a powerful web-based system ready to improve workflow and management. It automates key tasks and processes to help make your business more efficient - and an efficient business means less stress and more profits.
Some examples of how a business or team might use WORKetc:
- Manage sales leads from collection through to conversion, and then customer
- Share documents between employees contractors and customers
- Manage projects between participants including Gantt charts, project milestones payments, shared documents, timesheet tracking and project history
- Organize meetings and plan events which company wide calendars
- Better support your customers through online customer support
- Create detailed invoices and keep track of payments
- Is WORKetc the right product for you?
Every business is unique and what we have found is that every business ends up using WORKetc in slightly different ways.
WORKetc will be a good fit for your business if you have between 3 and 100 people in your organization. If you have less than 3 users then you may find it overkill – WORKetc is a tool for team work and collaboration incorporating a lot of features traditionally found in enterprise-level software.
If your business is engaged in a selling a product or service and then delivering and supporting that product or service, WORKetc is a perfect fit as it manages the entire process for you; from sales lead through to provisioning, billing and after-sales support.
- How many users can I have on WORKetc?
WORKetc is a collaboration product designed to run growing businesses and remote teams. To get the most out of WORKetc we recommend having at least 3 people in your team up to 100 people. Beyond 100 people in your organization and there are more appropriate ERP-type products available which we’ll happily recommend.
- Can I install on my own servers?
To make WORKetc as fast (and secure) as possible, meaning that you enjoy using the software more, we have customized our hosting environment to ensure WORKetc is not only fast but never fails.
We prefer to look after all the hosting requirements for you, so that you just need to concentrate on building your business. For this reason, WORKetc is only available on our infrastructure.
And more importantly, because we are continuously, daily (!), updating and improving WORKetc we can ensure that you are always accessing the latest version and that any issues are identified and quickly resolved. This is the “SERVICE” in “Software as a Service”.
For the technically minded, WORKetc’s infrastructure includes 1.5TB of RAID-10, SSD (!) drives and over 768 GB of RAM. It would be prohibitively expensive for the average business to build and maintain a relative level of infrastructure just to host their own installation of WORKetc.
- Can I import my existing data?
Yes, WORKetc has a number of automated tools to help import your data. Or for a low fee, one of our support team will take all your data and manage the import for you.
- Can I export and take my data with me?
Yes. We believe that your data belongs to you always. At any time you can download a complete SQL database of your entire WORKetc data archive. And on many screens and tools you can export specific data as excel spread sheets.
- What if I don’t plan on using all of the modules
WORKetc includes all modules for the single, low monthly fee. If you don’t plan on using a module, or if you don’t want your staff using a module, access can simply be turned off from the permissions manager. Whilst permissions is turned off, that module will no longer appear as an item on the menu.
- Does WORKetc work with my email?
Yes. WORKetc has a number of email integrations:
- Drop box for support and sales meaning that any email sent to your support or sales email address will appear within those modules.
- Send email from within WORKetc to any contact or group, from within sales, support, billing, projects or from any contact.
- Install the Gmail for Google Apps widget to access a contacts details from directly inside of Gmail. Take any email inside of Gmail and send it to WORKetc to update a project, create a sales lead or assign a support case.
- Install the Outlook Add-in (June 2012) to synchronize contacts, view detailed WORKetc information about your contact and use any email to update a project, create a sales lead or assign a support case.
- Can I integrate other software with WORKetc? Is there an API available?
Yes. WORKetc has a full and open API. In fact, we built the WORKetc on top of our API. Read more about WORKetc's API.
- Is there a mobile or cell phone version of WORKetc available?
WORKetc has dedicated Android and iOS applications as well as a mobile optimizes web interface (mobile CSS).
- Can WORKetc be customized for my business?
Whilst WORKetc cannot be customized for an individual customer we do have a number of features and settings to make WORKetc a better match to how you do business:
- Data grids (tables) allow you to select the data you want to see as well as chose the order and sorting of columns
- Over 150 settings to match things like the language your business uses, local taxes, product options, your specific sales process, how you manage support issues and more
- Custom fields meaning you can display information that is relevant to your business against activities such as projects, support cases, sales leads and contacts
- Editable templates for invoices and email campaigns
- Complex searches and reports to ensure you get the information you need out of WORKetc
Even though WORKetc is not “custom development” it can be easily set up to closely manage the nuances of your specific business.
- What languages is WORKetc available in?
WORKetc has been translated into the following languages:
- Brazilian (Portugese)
- Chinese (Traditional)
- Dutch (Netherlands)
- Spanish (Spain and Mexico)
Translation has been done by our community. If you think the translation could be improved, simply select the link at the bottom of any page and enter in the new word.
- How often is WORKetc updated?
- Will WORKetc replace my accounting software?
WORKetc does not replace accounting software, rather it works with your accounting software to give you more, real-time insight into how your business is functioning.
Additionally it does a lot more than accounting software such as customer management, sales management, document sharing, appointment setting and online team collaboration.
WORKetc synchronizes in real time with Xero, Quickbooks Online (June 2012) and Quickbooks Desktop editions (June 2012)
- Where can I find documentation?
Our user-guide includes over 200 pages of videos, text and detailed diagrams.
Additionally, on every page we have help-glyphs that provide in-page help on how to use a feature.
- How do I get support?
On every page within WORKetc, there is a clear link to contact support.
- Can I get specialized training?
Yes. We have several training packages available.
- What if I have a great idea for a new feature?
WORKetc has an active Feature Suggestion forum where our community can suggest ideas, discuss and vote ideas up or down.
The more popular the idea, the more likely it will be implemented. But, it is not just about popularity. We look at every idea and if we think it good, we’ll go ahead and build it.
- How do I found out about future features?
- How do I get involved in the beta program?
Before making major releases available to all users, we run an invite-only beta program. We make an announcement on our blog and ask for guinea pigs to sign up and test out the changes.
- How long will it take to get up and running?
WORKetc is designed to be intuitive whilst not sacrificing functionality. What this means is that users can get started immediately with the basics and then take time to use the more specialized features as they need too.
- Can I resell WORKetc? Do you have a partner program?
WORKetc does not currently have a partner or affiliate program.
Pricing and Inclusions
- How much does it cost?
WORKetc is $78 for 1-2 users, per month and then $39 per user per month for each extra user.
For 10 to 20 users, it is $390 per month for the first 10 users then $29 per user per month for each additional user.
For 21 or more users, it is $680 per month for the first 20 users then $29 per user per month for each additional user.
- What is a user?
A user is a person actively involved in your business who would perform actions such as lodge timesheets, update projects, manage support cases, sell products or create invoices.
A user is not your customer, supplier or partner. WORKetc allows unlimited contacts like these.
A contractor is usually a user for your business.
- Do I have to pay for contractors?
It depends on how active your contractor is in your business.
You can give any outside person or company access to the customer portal where they can:
1. view their support tickets
2. view their invoices
3. view knowledgebase
4. view files and emails related to projects to which they're assigned
5. upload files and send emails
But if you need your contractor to lodge time sheets, create and edit projects, answer support cases or manage sales leads then they are really "users" in the WORKetc system.
- Can I buy the software outright? Can I buy the source code?
WORKetc is only available as a month-to-month subscription. WORKetc is more than just software, it includes infrastructure to make it available online as well as backup solutions to ensure you never lose data. Additionally, the product is being constantly improved, allowing us to pass all improvements along to our subscribers - never pay for upgrades again. This also means it can scale up and down with your business - meaning you don't get stuck paying for expensive software if need to downsize your business. And adding new users takes less than a few minutes.
- Can I get a discount?
WORKetc has a strict policy about discounting.
We have a business to run as well and don’t want to slow down our product development or limit support levels because we’ve been discounting our product.
Furthermore, WORKetc does not “price-match” as it is not comparable to products like Basecamp or Salesforce. This would be like going to a car yard and asking for a discount on this Mercedes because you saw a Toyota next door for half the price. Both cars are great products, but you can’t compare them on price alone.
But if you have been a customer for more than 6 months and find your business struggling, we are more than happy to lend a hand with payment holidays (because we actually care).
- WORKetc is too expensive.
WORKetc combines CRM, project management, sales, billing, support and more in the single platform. For just $39 per user you get access to not only all these tools but also the benefit from increased productivity from using an all-in-one system.
To purchase a separate system for CRM, another system for project management and yet another system for billing would cost your business much more; not only in terms of dollars but also from lost productivity with your staff having to learn different system and switch between them during their typical work day.And then you have to include the costs creating integrations between all those products. It gets very expensive, very quickly.
If you still think $39 per user, per month is too expensive for your business then you should stop looking for software right now and focus more on how your business makes money!
- WORKetc is too cheap.
Yes it is. Take advantage while you can. Although we have no firm plans to raise the existing base price, be assured that when we do, all existing customers will be “grand fathered” at their current pricing level.
- If I pre-pay can I get a discount?
Yes. When you pre-pay for 12 months, we give you 2 months for free.
- What is included?
- Are there any limitations or hidden extras?
We do have some limitations that are required ensure a fair distribution of resources and to limit the activity of some people who might be using WORKetc for less-than-honest endeavours:
- We offer storage for 5000 standard business documents such as PDF, Word documents and spreadsheets, per account, provided no individual document is larger than 20MB in size. WORKetc is not designed as a “large-file” sharing services and provides integration into such products such as Box.com and Google Docs for such use.
- We do not offer storage for video files over 50MB nor copyrighted material in any format including software applications, movies and music.
- Email is limited to 10,000 messages per calendar month per user. Additional email message capacity may be purchased by purchasing additional users. Although WORKetc has powerful email marketing tools, it is not designed as a mass-email platform. If your business needs to exceed this limit we do allow you to plug in a custom SMTP server to bypass WORKetc email servers.
- SPAM. We have a zero tolerance policy toward spam and spammers.
- Am I locked into a contract?
We bill your account on a monthly basis and you are free to cancel at any time. Please note that we do not refund any unused portion of your subscription.
Security, Reliability and Infrastructure
- What technology is WORKetc built on?
WORKetc is built on tried and tested Microsoft platform, specifically the .net architecture and MS SQL 2008 databases. We use only fully redundant Dell servers and Intel branded SSD drives. Our hardware and network is fully redundant with multiple servers and bandwidth providers.
- Where is WORKetc hosted?
WORKetc has dedicated servers located within the Peer1 network. Peer1 has 17 global datacentres, is a Top 5 hosting provider and maintains 13,000 miles of dedicated fiber cable in its SuperNetwork™. You can read more about Peer1 here: http://www.peer1.com
- How fast is WORKetc?
Fast. Our servers utilize the latest SSD drives in RAID 10 array. We have multiple servers and firewalls to distribute loads and plug into a high speed private network to ensure the end user always connects through the most direct route.
- How reliable is WORKetc?
Here is our independent uptime report for the first 3 months of 2012.
- What hardware runs WORKetc?
- 2 x web server ( both with 2 x Intel Xeon E5620 2.4 GHz)
- 3 x Dell database servers (all with Intel Xeon E5645 2.40 GHz Six-Core, 12 Threads )
- 2x Foundry Server Iron Load Balancing
- Combined 768 GB RAM (!)
- 12 x 200 GB SSD's in RAID10 (!) x 2 Setups
- 2 x Juniper high-capacity dedicated firewall
- 1000 MB/Port @ Peer1 – Fremont through to 4 dedicated bandwidth providers
- 1 x Offsite Server with 4TB (terabytes) of secure storage
- Is my data secure?
Yes. All accounts access WORKetc through industry-standard, 256 bit SSL security (most likely the same as your online bank). Additionally we utilize high-end firewalls and remote monitoring services to ensure your data is secure.
- How do I control what my users (employees) can access?
WORKetc has detailed permissions settings which allow you to either allow full access, allow view-only access or deny access. This means you can control what each of your employees can view and what activities they can perform inside of WORKetc.
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- What is the full list of features?
- CRM Software
- Project Management software
- Web based Billing
- Help Desk Software
- Google Business Apps
- Document Management