[Web4lib] Zoho Anyone?

Gail Clement gclement at library.tamu.edu
Fri Sep 9 13:12:59 EDT 2011

Hi Ryan et al.,

I have been using Zoho Creator for a library-based  research project and think it is a great fit for our use. We are using it as a collaborative tool to perform content analysis on many hundreds of copyright questions. Our coders who enter research data come from  institutions across the US.  Zoho has allowed us to work collaboratively, customize the data entry forms and the data reports fairly easily and at a relatively low cost. 

But I do admit to sharing the concern about whether this application could ramp up sufficiently to handle more robust uses.  The account I am using is a paid monthly option with limited numbers of users, applications and records. Even with this small scale service, I feel the pain of regular database hang-ups and  minimal help desk support (no response to my questions, and this a paid account). Also, when I have wanted to outsource some of the more advanced scripting and development work to a freelancer, it has been hard to find someone in the US with proven Zoho Creator experience and consistently good references.  The one guy  in the US I found -- someone with  mixed references -- charges $80/hour.

Zoho Creator is apparently in use by various enterprises but I wonder if any of them offer round-the-clock public access at the scale a library does.  I would definitely get references from existing enterprise users before making a serious commitment.

Please feel free to write offline if you would like more info on the Zoho Creator experience here.

Best wishes,

Gail Clement

Gail P. Clement
Outreach Librarian and Associate Professor
Digital Services & Scholarly Communication
University Libraries
Texas A&M University

-----Original Message-----
From: web4lib-bounces at webjunction.org [mailto:web4lib-bounces at webjunction.org] On Behalf Of Ryan Hess
Sent: Friday, September 09, 2011 10:19 AM
To: Dugas at webjunction.org; Marie-Ève; web4lib at webjunction.org
Subject: Re: [Web4lib] Zoho Anyone?

Thanks for everyone's replies. I've been looking closer at Zoho this week and actually think Zoho Creator will meet our needs best...mainly because we need something that can be adaptable to many situations. The fact that it can be enhanced with scripting and has some APIs was a big plus.

Actually, the more I look at it, the more interested I am in its potential for serving up relational database web services for our library site. My main concern with this is whether or not Zoho would be able to handle the traffic effectively (especially if we're building our hours database in it, which can get busy around finals).

Anyone have insights into using Zoho as a relational database for their library's public site?


On 9/8/11 5:07 PM, "Dugas" <Dugas> wrote:

> I have recently tried many different (free) project management 
> platforms and Zoho Projects made the short list. However, for the ease 
> of use and different possibilities it offered, our final choice has 
> been Central Desktop (www.centraldesktop.com/). We are very satisfied 
> so far (we have used it for 7 months). The task lists, milestones and 
> calendar features are one of the best I've seen. Zoho Projects is 
> interesting in many ways and a very powerful tool, but might be a bit 
> less user friendly than CD. The only thing about CD is the free 
> version is very limited for the number of users (5) and storage (1GB), which wasn't an issue for us.
> As for Zoho Creator, I use it on a daily basis, mainly to maintain a 
> spreadsheet-style list of different things I need to share with 
> co-workers (not task or project-related). It is way more powerful than 
> Google docs. The customization possibilities are amazing, you can use 
> forms to fill in the spreadsheet, you can export in different formats, create different views, etc.
> So I would say it is a very interesting and powerful tool, but you can 
> easily get lost in all the possibilities it offers.
> If you want more info, don't hesitate to contact me directly.
> Cheers,
> Marie-Eve Dugas
> Bibliothécaire, responsable du centre de documentation INRS - Centre 
> Urbanisation Culture Société Courriel et MSN : 
> marie-eve.dugas at ucs.inrs.ca
> Téléphone : 514 499-4098
> Télécopie : 514 499-4065
> sdis.inrs.ca
> -----Message d'origine-----
> De : web4lib-bounces at webjunction.org 
> [mailto:web4lib-bounces at webjunction.org]
> De la part de Ryan Hess
> Envoyé : 7 septembre 2011 17:05
> À : web4lib at webjunction.org
> Objet : [Web4lib] Zoho Anyone?
> Hi all,
> I¹m investigating Zoho as a solution for surfacing the statuses of our 
> multiple digitization projects to our stakeholders. Zoho looks like a 
> good solution so far, but I have to say that I¹m a little perplexed by 
> their array of products, especially when it comes to Zoho Reports vs. Creator.
> Anyone have experience working with Zoho? Any recommendations for 
> which Zoho product would work best for creating a dashboard of project statuses?
> M Ryan Hess
> Web Services Coordinator
> DePaul University
> JTR 120, DePaul University, Lincoln Park Campus, 2350 N Kenmore Ave., 
> Chicago IL 60614
> office: 773-325-7829 | cell:  650-224-7279 |  fax: 773-325-2297  | 
> mhess8 at depaul.edu
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