A full ERP in the cloud with GWT and the Google Apps Marketplace

MAY 18, 2010
This post is part of the Who's @ Google I/O, a series of blog posts that give a closer look at developers who'll be speaking or demoing at Google I/O. This guest post is written by myERP.com’s Francois Nadal (CEO) and Thomas Ricard (CTO) who will be demoing as part of the Developer Sandbox.

myERP.com is a full ERP solution that has been available in the Google Apps Marketplace since its launch in early March.

Our all-in-one business suite includes all the functions a company needs to run their business from CRM to accounting to supply chain management. We've gotten a tremendous response from customers: in less than 3 weeks, we signed up more than 3,000 new small and medium customers.

Getting started was not easy. First, we had to convert our Java application to the cloud, using Google Web Toolkit (GWT). It was a task that took us nearly 2 years to complete we launched the first released of our ERP in the cloud in late 2008. It attracted the interest of Google engineers who subsequently invited us to present at the Google I/O 2009 developer conference in San Francisco.

To prepare for the Google Apps Marketplace launch, we started modifying our codebase. There were two very separate tasks to achieve. The first one was to OpenID-enable myERP.com, and more specifically SSO-enable it. A Google Apps user should never be asked to enter his or her credentials to login to myERP.com. When you work with Google, you have to focus even more than you are used to on the user experience. The user should never see the underlying technology and just navigate from his Gmail inbox or his Google Calendar to myERP.com as if everything was a single application. That was the toughest part to do, since our application was not ready for it. So, we did a lot of refactoring. We're proud today to use our myERP.com software through our own Google Apps account.

The second part was easier since we were already integrated with Google Contacts and Calendar long before the Google Apps Marketplace. The main change was that we used to ask individual users for their credentials, which was a security risk. Now, we use OAuth. This development took us 2 weeks. We currently use the Google Contacts API to retrieve (import), create, update and delete customers created in myERP.com. We also use the Provisioning API to synchronize accounts in myERP.com with accounts in Google Apps. MyERP.com now lets customers use Gmail and Calendar to manage their Business Actions. Our next Google Apps development will focus on Google Docs: frequently requested features include exporting data to a Google Spreadsheet and putting an invoice in a Google Document.

We will be demoing in the Developer Sandbox at Google I/O, and we look forward to seeing you there!

Posted by Francois Nadal (CEO) and Thomas Ricard (CTO), myERP.com