Careers at Citrix
Citrix’s mission is to grow employee value through culture, which it believes will in turn drive customer value.
Citrix is a software firm that provides server, networking, application/desktop virtualization, cloud computing, and software-as-a-service (SaaS) technologies. The company operates two reportable business units:
Enterprise and Service Provider – This involves the following offerings:
- Workspace Services – Includes three types of products:
- Windows App Delivery – Lower the cost of Windows desktop and application management by virtualizing desktops and apps in the data center and providing a cloud-like service
- Mobile App Delivery – Help companies manage mobile devices and apps/data on the devices
- Citrix Workspace Suite – Allows customers to obtain desktop, mobility, and app products through an integrated offering
- Delivery Networking – Products that enable companies to provide cloud services to any device
Mobility Apps – This involves the following offerings:
- Communications Cloud – Facilitates the sharing of information; specific solutions include GoToMeeting, GoToWebinar, GoToTraining, OpenVoice, and Grasshopper
- Workflow Cloud – Facilitates the storage of information; specific solutions include ShareFile, GoToMyPC, and GoToAssist
Edward Iacobucci was a software developer at IBM who had once worked with Bill Gates on a collaborative project. He left and was offered a job by Microsoft, but decided to strike out on his own instead. He dreamed of a world of computing that was more flexible, with different devices being able to run on any type of software. In 1989, after raising $3 million in funding, he launched Citrus. However, another company with the same name objected, and he changed it to Citrix, a combination of Citrus and UNIX. The firm began with five employees, all former IBM engineers.
Citrix took the next two years to build its first offering, Citrix Multiuser OS/2. OS/2 was an operating system Iacobucci helped develop at IBM that enabled multiple employees to use it simultaneously with the help of a central server computer. Citrix raised another $3 million, and prepared to introduce the product to the market in 1991. Unfortunately, Microsoft revealed that it was abandoning OS/2 to launch its new operating system, Windows. This essentially made OS/2 obsolete.
Despite some pressure to shut the company down, Iacobucci assured Citrix’s board members that it could create a new version of Multiuser compatible with Windows. He completed another successful round of funding for $5 million for this purpose; new investors included Intel and, ironically, Microsoft. Citrix unveiled Multiuser 2.0 in 1992, and it was a triumph. The firm ended the year with $1.8 million in revenues, which grew to $5 million in 1993 and $10 million in 1994. Users were drawn to the products’ key benefit of allowing different parties simultaneous access to the same software.
By 1995, Citrix felt ready to go public. It quickly rose to the top of its industry due to low competition. The company now serves over 400,000 organizations with over 100 million individual users.
Benefits at Citrix
Business model of Citrix
Citrix has a segmented business model, with three customer segments having slightly different needs: Enterprises, Service Providers, and Consumers. Its organizational customers come in all sizes and industries, including technology, financial services, healthcare, telecom, and education.
Citrix offers three primary value propositions: convenience, cost reduction, and brand status.
The company’s solutions allow customers to utilize a network of computers connected to a central server that hosts its software. A large amount of workers can access the same information and software simultaneously, even if they are widely distributed geographically, creating convenience.
Widely available access means that organizations do not have to provide all of their employees with the same computers, and that workers can even use cheaper or older machines. This advantage enables companies to reduce purchase costs.
The company has established a strong brand over time. It was one of the first companies to offer a computer networking solution, and thus is well-established. It is also widely used, with customers including 90% of the Fortune 500 and 99 members of the Fortune 100. It sells its products and services in over 60 countries. Moreover, Citrix has been recognized by prominent research firms for its performance. Forrester Research identified it as a leader in the Virtual Desktop Infrastructure space. Also, Gartner named it a leader in its Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Mobility Management, as well as a top provider of Enterprise File Sync and Sharing and Application Delivery Controllers.
Citrix’s main channels are its website and systems integrators (Sis), through which it acquires most customers. The company also maintains a sales team consisting of corporate sales professionals and field-based sales engineers. It sells its offerings indirectly through original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), value-added distributors (VADs), value-added resellers (VARS), and independent software vendors (ISVs). Citrix promotes its offerings through advertising, direct mail, social marketing, and participation in webinars and in-person events.
Citrix’s customer relationship is primarily of a personal assistance nature. The company offers regular phone and e-mail support. It also provides numerous other options (for a fee) for obtaining support directly from customer service personnel:
Extended Support – This program offers maintenance and technical support beyond the initial amount provided for an additional fee.
Citrix Software Maintenance – This program offers unlimited 24x7x365 support worldwide, in addition to regular product updates.
Citrix Appliance Maintenance – This program offers unlimited technical support worldwide, regular software upgrades, and the replacement of non-working appliances.
Technical Relationship Management – This program offers a dedicated support person as a single point of contact; the person helps troubleshoot and solve complex problems.
In addition to support, Citrix offers the following:
Consulting Services – Consultants help customers with project implementation involving virtualization, networking, mobility management, and cloud infrastructure.
Training Services – The company offers training and certification programs for the use of its products and services. Formats include instructor-led classroom and online education and 24/7 self-paced instruction.
Despite the offering of these services, there is also a self-service component. Citrix’s website includes a number of resources for self-help, including articles and reports. There is also a community element as it features Community Support Forums for help from peers.
Citrix’s business model entails developing software and maintaining a platform for its customers. The company uses two independent contractors for its hardware manufacturing activity -- IBM and Flextronics. These companies also offer warehousing, testing, and shipping services.
Citrix maintains the following four partner programs:
Service Provider – Enables members to provide the company’s virtualization solutions on a subscription, rental, or services basis.
Solution Advisor – Enables resellers and consultants to receive training so they can provide education and implementation support to their customers for Citrix offerings.
System Integrator – Enables companies to help their enterprise customers design, plan, and deliver business solutions using Citrix offerings.
Independent Software Vendor – Enables software firms to integrate Citrix technology into their solutions for enhanced functionality.
Citrix’s specific partners include Accenture, Cisco, Google, IBM, Microsoft, and SAP.
Citrix’s main resource is its software development team, which engages in extensive R&D to enhance the performance of its portfolio and generate new innovations. Members have significant experience in XML-based software development, multi-user Web-based application development, and cloud and networking technologies, among other areas. The company also relies heavily on sales/marketing staff for the sale and promotion of its products/services, customer support personnel for its wide variety of service programs, and training employees for its wide range of education offerings.
Citrix has a value-driven structure, aiming to provide a premium proposition through extensive personal service. Its biggest cost driver is sales/marketing expenses, a fixed cost. Other major drivers are in the areas of research & development and administration, both fixed costs.
Citrix has four revenue streams:
Products and Licenses – Includes revenue generated from the sale of software and licenses for usage of software.
Software-as-a-Service – Includes revenue generated from fees charged for access to the company’s software provided over a network.
License Updates and Maintenance – Includes revenue generated from fees for upgrades, maintenance, and general support for products. Specific programs include Subscription Advantage, Technical Support Services, Hardware Maintenance, and Software Maintenance.
Professional Services – Includes revenue generated from fees charged (on a transactional or annual basis) for customer support, consulting, and training/certification services.
info: Kirill earned a Master’s degree in Systems Engineering from Moscow University of Transport Engineering and an MBA from Houston Baptist University. He previously served as EVP of the Microsoft Business Solutions Division (MBS) and as CTO of BMC.
info: Bob earned a B.S. in Accounting and Finance at Fordham University. He previously served as Chief Financial Officer, CEO, and Chairman of Ariba, as well as CFO of Avery Dennison Corporation, SVP of Finance at Apple, and VP of Finance at IBM.
info: David earned an MBA from Santa Clara University and a Bachelor's degree in Finance from the University of Arizona. He previously served as CFO of Rational Software Corporation and held finance roles at Samsung and Cypress Semiconductor.
info: Donna earned an M.S. in Organization Development from Pepperdine University and a B.A. in Organizational Communication from the University of Delaware. She previously held executive roles at International Game Technology and Sensata.
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