by Roopinder Tara, Tenlinks.com
Is this news? I call it a conversion.
As news editor of TenLinks, I had included such items as news in our newsletter. To me, a company switching CAD systems was important. It signified that a company had found an advantage of one CAD system over another. The hope was that the company had made a serious comparison of the two systems, and so found their present one lacking. It must have been a gut-wrenching decision, as so much is invested in a CAD system: the training, translating legacy data, office procedures -- not to mention the dreaded conversion that is about to ensue. From such anguish, a lesson learned, maybe for those with similar products, or similar companies.
And as such, a conversion would be worthwhile, interesting, maybe useful... in other words "news."
Not so fast, oh smug news editor, says one CAD insider. He works at a leading CAD company, which NEVER boasts of conversions. I tell him a rival has converted a dozen seats from his company's product to those of his rival.
"Ho hum," he says. "We get this all the time. It's routine for us to take fifty or sixty seats at a time from our competitors. We don't brag."
It actually made sense. A market leader, even one not taking a high road, could only achieve their position and maintain it by constantly converting users from other CAD systems. They would tire of such claims; they would be common place, even expected. An editor would soon tire of receiving such claims.
For all the conversions that are going on, it just might be possible that most of it is going in the direction favorable to market leaders. And when they do not publicize it, such conversions go unreported.
Whereas the stragglers, also-rans, start-ups, and upstarts report joyously on each and every seat wrested from anyone, as few and infrequent as they might be. Then don't I risk spreading the unsubstantiated and skewed belief that market leaders are losing market share to their competition, though it may be far from the truth.
[Reprinted with permission of CAD Insider.]