It still happens: a client sends you a report to review for an upcoming meeting, and it’s a 90-page PDF.
San Francisco-based Inkling thinks it can put a stop to such such situations, which are bound to send you back to your desk to repeatedly bang your head against the wall. The company is bringing its publishing platform to the enterprise, with the goal of helping more companies create mobile-friendly, digital-first content that isn’t a bear to read or interact with no matter which device you’re using.
Inkling was founded in 2009 by Matt MacInnis and Rob Cromwell, now CEO and VP of Engineering, respectively.
The launch comes after nearly a year in beta, where Inkling allowed testers to suggest how the software should be tweaked for enterprise users. The platform is like a more advanced product of what you can produce with online tools like Google Docs, with some clever add-ins to create a portfolio, presentation, or report that is rather easy to navigate from a computer, tablet or smartphone.
Among many of the items that Inkling implements is several features that make more sense for reading in the digital era, which typically happens on a device instead of a binder. Words can be long-pressed for a pop-up view, and formatting is responsive to be easily read on a phone, tablet or computer. You’ll still need to spend some time to make the design good, but there are a lot of tools in place already that should help you make this happen.
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But the difference between the enterprise edition of Inkling and its previous iteration is that there’s a square focus on business and the kinds of content that one needs to create for the enterprise. Think white papers, content training guides, customer information flyers and other publications that you want to have front and center for your customers.
The Inkling Platform is built specifically for rich newsletters, presentation decks and other documentation. The learning curve might be a little higher, but it could be worth it if you want to create a more engaging portfolio online or sent to potential customers for them to peruse on their own device.
In announcing the move, Inkling says that it’s tripled its customer base recently with companies like Gap Inc., KMPG, Accenture, Roche and Carnival Corporation coming aboard. However, complacency isn’t an option as Google and Microsoft are constantly ramping up their services with Google Apps for Work and Office 365.
There’s a lot about Inkling that is impressive, and it may be the right option if you want to create rich material for customers, clients or employees across a variety of platforms.