hybris: 5 Loves and 5 Dislikes

I have been helping a potential customer put together a presentation to sell hybris to their management for a possible future implementation, and they asked me “if you were asked to give your 5 loves and hates of hybris, what would they be?”.  Here was my response.

First, lets get the nasty negatives out of the way. Hate is such an evil word. My old housemother at Milton Hershey School would never allow that word in the house as it is so definitive and absolute, providing no space to improve, so I will change it to:

My Top 5 dislikes about hybris

1. hybris is such a black box when it comes to information of how to use their platform. They have a TON of features, but there is no “public” consultants (thinking of Microsoft MVPs as an example) and their documentation is very cumbersome and scattered, partly due to just wealth of features makes it difficult to organize for a given audience.

2. Licensing. Why is it soo freaking complicated! I’m not a huge fan of selling models that require you talk to a sales agents then based on a “feeling” get a price, and having such high retail pricing up front turns off so many potential sales, though NO one buys at full retail price (it’s like buying a car, everyone hates dealing with car dealers but you have to to not pay the “sticker price). They are coming out (or already did, but who knows) new pricing model but again, no one knows the new details up front.

3. CMS and Product Information Management. It is really not user friendly. Even with features such field validation, workflows, etc, it is still not really useful for Marketing and Merch teams.They do have Next Generation Cockpit (NG) that provides a much stronger UI to build better business flows, but this helps mainly just PIM, and still lacks improved interface for CMS (the actual web site pages).

4. In addition to CMS and PIM manipulation, they are missing strong version and authorship tracking. They provide an API where you can monitor each change in each cockpit (HMC has it built-in OOTB) but you cannot restore past versions, or prepare multiple instances of a single product at same time (this happened many times with MS China).

5. Bundling. I think Bundling is a very common selling tactic now a days, but hybris only focuses on this feature in conjunction with Digital businesses and services like cellular providers. They did make a partial movement away from this by allowing entitlement feature to work with physical products as well, but that is only relates to gifts and not selling.

*taking a large deep breath* now that I got the negative stuff out of the way, lets talk about the fun exciting topic:

My Top 5 loves about hybris

Lets be honest, this was not an easy list to create as there is so many things, but here it is:

1. There is a lot of advanced features already developed by hybris, both for end user interface, back office logic etc. Bonus is that you know there is more stability with these features then developing from scratch as there is 100K + other customers who is using same platform (hybris has 300k customers, but figure not everyone is on same version). There is always a sense of comfort and security when you know many people are using same feature.

2. OMS (Order Management System) and OMM (Order Management Module). These provide great power over warehouse management, stock management, and order management (order splitting, stock management based on availability, warehouse in comparison to delivery location, etc).

3. Lightweight. For the power of hybris, ability to drive it in JVM and easily scale on demand is a show of well planned framework built into the platform.

4. Powerful Facet and search features. When properly configured, the Solr in combination with facet is very powerful with ease of creating keyword redirects, stop word/ synonyms, boost rules and hero products. Great for cases where for example, Surface has had several generations and rumored tablets (Surface Mini) where you can redirect user to Surface Pro 3, and not show wasted space with accessories or no results found. Also with proper “Classifications” configured, make it easier to locate accessories and PCs based on facet search. Again with 5.4, the new NG cockpit has very powerful tools to manage the facet controls.

5. Datahub. This is a newer feature in 5.4 and 5.5 includes actual GUI, but it provides a method to import data from variety of sources, group information, standardize the content, then finally import it into hybris, It provides capabilities to export data well. This would be a great tool to manage content coming form Global Catalog to pull data in from their CRM, or a good way to make Official Online Store your master product catalog, then you can ship the information to other channels or vice versa.

Well, there you have it. My 5 dislikes, but more importantly, my 5 loves of hybris.  What do you love/dislike about hybris?

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