DrupalCon kicks off today, and I am looking forward to connecting with old friends, partners, and clients. As our team has arrived and started reconnecting with our colleagues and friends in the space, a lot of discussion has centered around what’s happening in the Drupal market, and what trends are emerging.
This is an exciting time for Drupal, and we are seeing considerable growth in the companies we meet and in the projects we want to service. Here are three major trends I am most excited to follow:
1. Strategy, Not Just Implementation
In many cases, we are finding that companies aren’t just looking for us to “build a Drupal website” -- they are looking for technology consultants to help dive deep into their organization’s vision, mission, and challenges, and develop a technology strategy that will deliver for the long-haul. Often, these teams are considering Drupal as a viable option for their site, and they need advice from Drupal experts who have seen how Drupal can work for their particular business case, as well as what other integrations they might consider to complete the solution. This is awesome to see -- our team is excited by the opportunities to develop comprehensive strategies that help our clients achieve their missions, and it gives our team the ability to really be invested in that mission, too.
2. Businesses Need Collaboration Tools, Not Just Websites
Intranets, portals, communication forums, and connections -- Forget simple “content management,” -- these are the hallmarks of many organizations’ needs for Drupal right now. More organizations are seeking (and more Drupal contributors are developing) internal communication tools and robust Drupal functionality that keeps their teams connected and projects managed. The recent release of Open Atrium 2.0 is gaining a lot of attention for its flexibility and customizability. We’re interested to learn more about the plugins, integrations, and functionality the market is seeking in the social business collaboration space right now, and to working with talented developers in the space at the Atrium Hackathon this Friday. If you’re a developer, we hope you’ll come hack with us Friday!
3. The Market is Getting Smarter
Enterprise level companies have been using Drupal for some time now, and many are even on their second or third implementation. What this means is that the market is maturing -- many firms are already very knowledgeable about Drupal, and they value expertise, contribution, and community leadership. The challenge of “building a Drupal platform” has been replaced by the challenge of scaling that platform from 60 sites to 2,000. The DrupalCon training: “Drupal Performance and Scalability with the Dream Team” is a great example of how trainings and sessions are meeting the market around this need.
The underlying message in the trends that I am seeing is that the Drupal market is changing and maturing. We no longer necessarily have to prove Drupal can be a viable option, or explain the premise around open source. Customers are more knowledgeable about what Drupal is capable of, and what they want. We are now engaging with companies who are truly informed buyers and who are looking to us to bring their Drupal system to the next level. I’m really looking forward to discussing these trends at DrupalCon this week, and discussing how we can push more companies to be informed Drupal buyers.