5 Replies Latest reply on Oct 2, 2013 2:52 PM by flybynight

    Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?

    maximums

      Hello everybody!

       

      My client is a trade who is growing his business. At the moment, there is his admin team (his wife) and he has 3-4 sub contractors. They are a young and vibrant team with lots of drive. He and his subbies want to be able to access their database via FMGo on iPad and admin will work from their home office on a MacBook (at the moment). Their budget is, given it is a small family business trying to grow, very small. Their foresight is fantastic, being prepared to invest in their growth and have an application that will cater to all their needs (ultimately) but for the moment increase they want to increase their productivity with regard to client management, quoting and monitoring won jobs with a view to increasing the functionality as they grow the business. Simple stuff really.


      What I'd like to know is what people think should be their start up equipment and set up? What would you recommend and why?

       

      Thanks people

      cheers

      Linda


        • 1. Re: Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?
          Mike_Mitchell

          Linda -

           

          Equipment investment is conceivably very small. They could simply use their existing mobile devices and laptop and host the database on a hosting service. There are several that are suitable; I usually recommend this sort of setup to small startups because they don't have the staff or know-how to run their own server (handling backups, patching, firewall, virus updates, etc.).

           

          Once they decide they've outgrown that (which could take quite a while), then they may want to think about their own server. But it would have to be a question of the hosting service costing them more long-term than it costs them to purchase and maintain their own server.

           

          Others may have a different opinion, of course. But in my experience, most small startups are well-served by letting server experts handle that end of things and just run the clients.

           

          HTH

           

          Mike

          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?
            DavidJondreau

            Use a hosting service! And get FileMaker Pro Advanced. The $200 extra is worth it. So, $500, plus $30/month and FM Go is free!

            1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?
              maximums

              Thanks peoples. I'm still opting for the hosted database, but I will give the client other options with my recommendations to host the file remotely for now being something they can build on in the future as their business grows and more funds can be allocated to this function.  Working from a local machine may work well in some circumstances, but these people live in an area that has frequent blackouts thus rendering their workspace powerless and their files subject to frequent crashes. I also think backing up the files frequently and without exception may be an issue for them.

               

              cheers

              Linda

              • 4. Re: Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?
                jameshoty

                Hi Linda,

                 

                Just only in case you do not know, you can find a list of hostng provider under www.filemaker.com > solution > consulants > check "hosting". They have all the necessary FM know-how for your needs.

                • 5. Re: Small business investing in FileMaker—what equipment do they need?
                  flybynight

                  Question for the room at large…

                   

                  Given Linda's concerns about network blackouts, just thinking out loud here. Would it be an option to use a hosting service that the mobile devices would connect to, but then also have the file locally on her MacBook and utilize one of the syncing solutions out there to keep her local copy in sync with the hosted copy?

                   

                  This might give a speed boost to the local copy, but I'm not sure how much complexity or other issues you would run into with such a setup.

                  I would think you could also have a launcher file on the iPad that detects if it is on the local LAN at the office or not, and then connects to the local or the hosted db?

                   

                  Or if this is just a really bad idea and asking for trouble, let me know. Like I said, I haven't actually done this myself… just brainstorming here.

                   

                  Laters,

                  -Shawn