Custom applications are vital to any business; there’s no argument there. But, it can be very difficult to determine the costs and benefits of the middleware necessary to develop, deploy, and manage those custom applications. So how do you know if your middleware is really delivering value?

And what is "value" anyway? Is it low upfront acquisition costs? Ease-of-use that contributes to better productivity? High-quality products and support services? The ability to refocus resources to do more? What about actually adding top-line revenue? In short, it’s really all of these things.

So, how valuable is your application platform? It’s probably fair to say that most people intuitively believe that open source has much lower upfront costs. But making the case for greater productivity, flexibility, and all the other components of value, especially to senior management, can be a challenge.

However, this hurdle just became a lot easier with the recent release of the IDC study – The Business Value of JBoss Enterprise Application Platform (Doc.#226338, Dec. 2010) . At Red Hat’s sponsorship, IDC studied the business value of adopting the JBoss Enterprise Application Platform for six JBoss customers. IDC’s study showed that on average, companies that use JBoss Enterprise Application Platform save more than $6 million each year in financial benefits than when using traditional, proprietary application servers.

In addition to pure cost savings, the study showed that organizations that switched to JBoss Enterprise Application Platform from traditional proprietary application servers also realized:

  • An average of $3.5 million in additional annual revenue
  • More efficient application development, resulting in the ability to develop 51% more applications per year
  • A 65% reduction in infrastructure costs, supporting application development
  • An 89% reduction in costs to manage applications post deployment
  • 569% ROI generated over a three-year period, with an initial pay back in less than six months after deployment

The study concludes by getting right to the point. "For many years, the tension between the proprietary source application server vendors and open source has revolved around the idea of enterprise-class performance. The larger, proprietary source vendors try to scare their customers from adopting open source, particularly JBoss, telling them the software is too hard to use and too hard to configure and does not scale. Based on the results of this study, that is clearly not the case."

We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. So how valuable is your application platform? If it’s not worth $6 million to your business, maybe you should find one that is.

Learn more: In addition to reading the study, you can also hear the study’s methodology and key findings from the author, Maureen Fleming, program vice president for IDC’s Business Process Management and Middleware Research area by registering for her on-demand webinar – "The Business Value of JBoss Enterprise Application Platform."

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