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CRM Logic 1:03pm on Monday, January 31st, 2011 
Hi guys,
As per my experience regarding CRM business solutions, CRMLogic is a professional services firm focused on CRM business solutions. Their approach is a blend of management consulting and technology know-how, which provides us with contemporary business outcomes - not just software.
One can get benefit of their wealth of experience from simple solutions with little customization through complex extensions with deep integration to related systems at: http://www.crmlogic.com.au
Marto1971 3:25am on Tuesday, August 31st, 2010 
Great phone, however, the user interface could be better; I get tried of the on off switch to answer a phone call.
seitz 3:23am on Sunday, August 22nd, 2010 
i got this flew in from the US and i must say it looked good as i brought it out, i was even impressed by the apps it had on the phone.
raptap 10:02am on Thursday, August 12th, 2010 
All in all I love this phone, only one I can think that is better is the Samsung I9000 Galaxy S. First to all the people who say that this is different than the verizon model; do some reasearch before you post. Second.
crh 11:50am on Saturday, June 5th, 2010 
I have always wanted a smart phone that was not outdated by the time my two year contract was up.
McB 8:57pm on Sunday, May 23rd, 2010 
Great cover,durable,bright color,fast shipment,very pleased with purchase. love the pink sparkle cover. Thanks! Fits the phone perfectly
TomBA 6:33am on Saturday, May 1st, 2010 
really like it, have had it for over a month and it holds up well and is very pretty. great buy!
hummingbird 3:44am on Thursday, March 11th, 2010 
Overall, I would take this phone over the Droid. I think that the form factor, and Sense UI really help for the consumer. I think that the Droid.

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doc0

Sage CRM Solutions

17 Rules of the Road for CRM
17 Rules of the Road for Customer Relationship Management

Introduction

When it comes to choosing the right customer relationship management (CRM) system for your business, its important to understand all the benefits of an integrated CRM system before beginning your selection process. When you launch a CRM implementation, your choices can impact nearly everyone in your company. Thats why weve created this booklet. These 17 rules of the road for CRM were collected from executives, managers, employees, and consultants who shared their experiences with us. Our goal is to provide you with useful information as you choose your own CRM system. You may be wondering why a software company like Sage would distribute a booklet that doesnt promote its own products. Were confident that the more you know about selecting and implementing a CRM system, the more likely you are to seriously considerand ultimately chooseproducts from Sage. Thats why we have a vested interest in sharing this information with you. We look forward to helping you succeed in choosing the best CRM solution for your organization.

Before You Start

1. CRM is more than a product, its a philosophy.
When your company chooses to implement a customer relationship management (CRM) system its taking a dramatic step forward in customer commitment. And, since customers drive your business, youre leaping ahead in your ability to generate and manage revenue, too. The benefits of CRM come not only from the product you purchase, but also from the implementation plan you follow. The more thoroughly you embrace a company-wide CRM philosophy, the more your company will benefit from the features your CRM software offers. CRM philosophy is simple: put the customer first. This is a modern development of the old the customer is always right adage on which so many successful businesses have been built. When your business looks at every transaction through the eyes of the customer, you cant help but deliver a better experience to your customerswhich in turn increases loyalty to your company. And, through customer-focused business practices, you often find new ways to streamline old methods and jettison administrative overhead that no longer benefits you or your customers.
2. Customers are everywhere: clients, vendors, employees, mentors.
It used to be easy to define the word customer. But companies are becoming more diverse, with multiple locations, employees who telecommute, and vendors who function as partners. The idea of customer has broadened to include a wide range of end users of different kinds of corporate information. For example, employees are customers when they need self-service information on 401(k) plans or other benefits. Shareholders are customers when theyre looking for financial information. Vendors are customers when they need detailed specifications before they can proceed with a project. A colleague is a customer when you need to deliver time-critical data. And, of course, the buyer is always a customer whose experience is critical to your bottom line. With a CRM system, you can serve all of the groups who rely on your company for important, timely information.
3. Dont confuse CRM with contact management.
Many midsized corporations have used some form of contact management software successfully for years and, at first, CRM may not seem much different.
However, if you take a closer look at CRM, youll see that its capabilities go far beyond contact management. CRM systems contain more information about your customers. With CRM, your support and service agents have immediate access to all the information they need to completely resolve customer inquiries. Your field sales reps can look up more than just customer contact information before they make a callthey can also evaluate past sales history, credit information, and other financial data. They can even look at information for the companys other offices and run reports to find out whats been ordered and what special prices or terms the customer receives. Open tech support calls or other issues are also visible. And, with some solutions, copies of invoices, e-mails, and past proposals can all be reviewedon screen and on the spot. In sum, if your sales reps and customer service agents need a complete picture of your companys customers to succeed at their jobs, choose CRM. On the other hand, if your business needs a system that provides a snapshot of its customers, but comes with a low total cost of ownership, then a contact management system may be a better fit.

4. CRM solutions are different for midsized companies.
Some software companies selling CRM would have you believe that you need to buy what they call an enterprise solution that includes all the bells and whistles required for the largest of global enterprises. But for small to midsized companies, this may mean paying for more capacity than is required. In fact, the price of these systems is often so high that any company smaller than a Fortune 500 firm cannot reasonably afford one. But other vendors have created CRM solutions with the midsized company in mind, offering applications that include virtually all of the features common in enterprise solutions, but at a cost that is reasonable for smaller-scale users. Even better, many of these solutions can be scaled from as few as five users to as many as you are likely to need in the future. With a CRM solution designed for midsized companies, you can start small and grow big without ever wasting your valuable resources on capacity you dont need. You buy what you need, when you need it. Another benefit of CRM solutions designed from the ground up for midsized companies is that they are easier to implement and are fully functional right out of the box. Maybe larger enterprises have the time and resources to spend tailoring a solution and integrating it into their enterprise. But midsized companies want a CRM solution that they can get up and running easily, quickly, and at minimal cost.

Your First Steps

5. Planning pays.
To ensure a successful CRM project, planning is essential. Begin by defining the need for a CRM solution. Arm yourself with the background information to justify the investment costs and to demonstrate where the benefits, savings, and ROI will come from. Next, define the stakeholders in the project and use the needs analysis and benefits projections as a foundation for establishing a common, company-wide goal for CRM. With this groundwork completed, you can now establish a budget, planning for the costs associated with identifying vendors, testing solutions, implementation, integration, training, and support. A team should then be assembled to begin the drive towards completion of the projecta drive that begins with a clear description of your companys CRM objectives and any processes that will have to be modified to make the project successful. Make sure the head of this team is a CRM evangelistsomeone who completely believes that CRM will make a difference. Good planning will involve discussions with internal and external customers. What are the best practices for your sales force, for your marketing team, for customer service? Also consider

the various types of data that are important to track for each group involved. Data required by different groups of system users may vary, such as the needs of field sales representatives compared to customer service agents. Plan for the needs of each group by confirming that your data requirements list is complete. Remember: any person who requires information available through the CRM solution should be considered a system user, whether he or she is an internal staff member or an external partner.

Comparing Options

6. Prepare for product demos.
Once possible products and vendors are identified, a demo will be a critical factor in determining which solution is best for your company. But before inviting vendors to perform their demos, be sure you have told them exactly what you are looking for. Why waste time evaluating a product that may be very functional but just will not work in your environment? Also be sure to find out from the vendor what platform is required to run the demo. Again, dont waste time scheduling a demo only to find out you dont have the right hardware or the right operating system to support the product. When comparing several products it is advisable to establish a scoring system that makes it easy to track the various benefits and shortcoming of each product being evaluated. By tabulating these scores, the decision process is often simplified. But be sure to include qualitative information in these lists, such as a vendors history of innovation, customer satisfaction, financial stability, and so on. And finally, make sure the CRM implementation team attends the demo, and encourage them to share their concerns and feedback. If the vendor or reseller cannot immediately address any issues raised, make sure they do so in a reasonable time frame. Responsiveness is often a key differentiator in the vendor selection process, so some planned tough questions may be critical to making a selection you can live with long into the future.
7. Implement current technology.
When you choose a CRM system, make sure its based on current technology. Dont let a salesperson talk you into product vaporware based on future promises. Insist on seeing a current version of the product as it can be deployed today. Equally important, dont accept old technology thats past its peak performance curve. You dont want to have to replace the system in the near future. Modern CRM systems are: Web-based, so you get 24 access from virtually any location, any time. /7 Fully integrated with back-office systems at your company. Easily customizable to meet your companys evolving needs. Able to be implemented quickly with minimal expense. Easy to use and intuitive, with little or no training required.

8. CRM is not a point solution.
CRM solutions should provide company-wide benefits. But many products that claim to be CRM applications address a single functional area such as marketing, sales force automation, or customer support. True, these vanilla solutions may be adequate for their specific intended purpose. But what happens when your requirements broaden? If you implement a dedicated sales force automation solution, for instance, and down the road realize that you also need to automate your marketing efforts, you have to start from scratch, looking for vendors, trying productsand wasting time. Plus, youll be faced with two separate products, two separate vendors, and no single point of contact for support and problem resolution. Even worse, with multiple point solutions, how will you share information across your
company? Will information captured by the sales force automation solution be leveraged in new marketing campaigns? Will marketing campaign data find its way to the customer support center where cross-selling opportunities could be made or lost? While its true that custom code can be written to integrate products, a true CRM solution provides the functionality of any point solution, as well as a cost-free, seamless way to add features and capabilities whenever you need them. So dont settle for anything less than a comprehensive solution that delivers on the true promise of CRM: Marketing campaign management Sales force automation Customer care Contact management Task management/ cheduling s
9. Speed ROI through back-office integration.
One area many companies overlook when evaluating CRM solutions is the fact that accounts payable and accounts receivable data are an integral part of CRM. If a customer calls to order a product, for example, wouldnt it be beneficial to instantly know whether that customers accounts are up to date? Although some CRM solutions offer patches to link back to an accounting system, others offer this seamless integration out of the box. The cost benefits of this approach are so great that some companies report an immediate ROI because they were able to get their application up and running without incurring the high costs of custom integration. Look for a CRM solution that provides standards-based integration with your other business management applications. Insist on being able to deploy on different technologies (databases and operating systems) as your needs change, support for Web Services, strong Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) for integration, and the ability to integrate out of the box with other technologiessuch as your phone system (Computer Telephony Interface) and your Web site (Web self-service).

10. Multi-channel access is the only way to go.
To be truly effective, a CRM solution needs to support customers on their own terms. This means delivering the information into the hands of agents who respond to customer inquiries over the telephone, fax, e-mail, or written letters. And, of course, in this Internet age, the CRM solution should also support interactive Web chat with customers and make a wide range of information available to them over robust Web sites. For internal staff, such as field service employees and sales staff, the solution should also support all standard wireless devices; solutions that are restricted to a single device or operating system will become too limiting as this technology evolves. With support for PDAs, for example, sales reps can get updates about the prospects or customers they are about to visitbefore they walk through the door.
11. Look for true platform flexibility.
Look for a CRM solution that provides the capability to seamlessly move to or from an on-site systemone that provides true platform flexibility. Perhaps youre not prepared to take on the technical aspects of implementing and supporting an on-site CRM solution. Your organization may favor the predictable pricing of an on-demand model. Or perhaps you want complete control and ownership of your CRM application so you can make your own configurations and customizations: an on-site deployment might be your best choice.
Finally, you may want the option to choose an on-demand model today and migrate to an inhouse system tomorrow. Most growing businesses eventually do migrate to an in-house CRM system to satisfy the need for sophisticated, end-to-end process integration. To ensure you have freedom of choice, invest in a CRM vendor with solutions that provide different methods of deployment. A good CRM solution should be flexible enough to accommodate whats best for your business in the present as well as in the future.
12. High cost does not necessarily mean high value.
Some vendors work very hard to propagate the myth that if a software package costs more, it offers more features. Savvy companies need to evaluate this statement with healthy skepticism. Are the features being sold features you really needor do they come as part of a so-called enterprise solution that was built for very large global companies? Pricing can also be completely unrelated to feature set and more a function of market presence. Many CRM vendors often get away with charging higher prices for solutions that are no more functional than those from lesser-known or smaller vendors. The bottom line on pricing is that if you find a solution that provides the feature set youre looking for and can grow with your business over time, youre likely making a wise investment.

A Smooth Implementation Ensures Success
13. CRM is not for any single department, its for

the whole company.

Often, the Sales department will be motivated to implement CRM long before other groups get on board. And it can be a great strategy to implement the new software one department at a time. But dont lose sight of your overall goal, which should be to implement CRM throughout the company. Youll get immediate results by putting CRM into Sales, Customer Service, or Support departments. But when you have everyone in the company connected to CRMwhen everyone has instant access to the critical information they need to keep driving business forwardthats when youll see the most exciting benefits of CRM. Its great to start your implementation with a departmental focus, but keep your larger goals in mind.
14. Implementation method is as important as product choice.
Just as a chain is only as good as its weakest link, a CRM solution is only as good as its implementation. The best product in the world will not meet expectations unless it is implemented in a way that matches your requirements. Once youve chosen a product, make sure it will work for your environment by creating a blueprint describing your goals and expectations for the implementation before the implementation process begins. Any questions regarding these expectations should be directed to an implementation team member who is designated as the liaison between the vendor and/ r o the consultant or reseller handling the implementation. Beyond loading software on a server and tailoring it to specific needs, a CRM implementation requires the involvement of all employees who will be using the system. Fail to obtain this support and you can safely assume that the system will not be fully utilized. Instead, reassure staff that they will receive all training required and that the system will make them more productive while making their jobs easier. Make the system even more alluring by letting all stakeholders and end-users know how the implementation process is progressing. The result: they will become eager for the process to be completed and to get up and running on the new system.
15. Training cant be on the job.
Employee buy-in is the key to a successful CRM implementation. So good training, tailored to the different skill levels of employees, is essential. Dont bore a technically adept sales manager with a beginners level dissertation on using a computer-based scheduler. And dont intimidate a beginning customer service agent with techno-speak about the ins and outs of back-end integration. Just as you tailor the product for your environment, tailor the training to the end-user. These training programs should begin before rollout to ensure end-users are ready to use the system when it is ready for them. In addition, this early training will add to the enthusiasm for the rollout and lay the groundwork for widespread acceptance.

16. Test, or crash and burn.
Dont overlook the importance of testing the software implementation before rolling it out. A test that involves mock customer data can be invaluable in determining how well the system receives and processes information. Better to find a glitch pre-rollout than to get stuck on one when talking to a customer. As part of this testing process be sure that all back-office integration is working properly. Make a list of typical operations that end-users will engage in, and test each and every one. Try to access data from the accounting system, for example, before a customer service agent needs to actually do so. Try to update customer data in the centralized database and make sure those updates are available throughout the system.
17. Focus on CRM goals: improve customer satisfaction, shorten sales cycles, and increase revenue.
Never lose sight of the fact that the customer is the reason for your CRM implementation. Get feedback from customers to see if their satisfaction levels are really increasing, or if there are improvements they would like to see. If you chose your CRM solution carefully, it should be flexible enough to adapt to evolving customer needs. And dont overlook your end-user groups. Could the sales staff benefit from an updated synchronization system with their PDAs that lets them access contact information directly from PDA software without always signing onto the CRM system? Would the marketing department like to see a new kind of analytical report that links post-sale collections data to campaign type? Keep the communication channels open after rollout and keep your CRM solution rolling along. Equally important, never overlook the power of CRM to self-monitor. Set up metrics that the system can track and always be sure that you are, in fact, increasing customer satisfaction, shortening sales cycles, improving efficiency, winning customers from the competition, increasing profitability per customer, and boosting bottom-line sales.

About Sage CRM Solutions

Sage CRM Solutions is a portfolio of market-leading applications consisting of ACT! by Sage, SageCRM, and Sage SalesLogix. Over 63,500 organizations and 3.1 million users worldwide rely on Sage CRM Solutions to develop profitable, long-term business relationships.

Sage 8800 N. Gainey Center Drive, Suite 200 Scottsdale, AZ 85258 www.sage.com 888-304-3805
2009 Sage Software, Inc. All rights reserved. Sage, the Sage logos, and the Sage product and service names mentioned herein are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sage Software, Inc. or its affiliated entities. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. 09-19616 10/09

doc1

17 Rules of the Road for Contact and Customer Relationship Management
When it comes to choosing the right Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system for your business, its important to understand all the benefits of a CRM system before beginning your selection process. When you launch a CRM implementation, your choices can impact nearly everyone in your company. Thats why this booklet has been created. These 17 Rules of the Road for CRM were collected from executives, managers, employees and consultants who shared their experiences with Sage. The goal is to provide you with useful information as you choose a new CRM system. Were confident that forewarned is forearmed and that the educated choice will be a Sage product.

CRM rules of the road

1.CRM is more than a product, its a project
When your company chooses to implement a Customer Relationship Management system (CRM), it is taking a dramatic step forward in its customer commitment. And, since customers drive your business, youre leaping ahead in your ability to generate and manage revenue, too. The benefits of CRM come not only from the product you purchase, but also from the implementation plan you follow. The more thoroughly you embrace a companywide CRM project, the more your company will benefit from the features your CRM software offers. Choosing a CRM system is often the simple part: the implementation can be hard. Thats why we always recommend working with a recognised expert in the area and learn from their experience in delivering a successful project. Through the course of a widely scoped project it is common to uncover areas and functions that can be automated that were not considered before. In principle give the CRM project time; it will repay you many times in what it delivers to your organisation. to your bottom line. With a CRM system, you can serve all of the groups who rely on your company for important, timely information.
3. Bigger is not always better
CRM is a broad discipline. Solutions are built to deliver and match different levels of functionality, complexity, structures, methods of working and robustness. Just as you are unlikely to buy a tractor to mow your lawn you should avoid looking to buy enterprise-focused systems it your companys requirements are simple or modest. The reverse is also true. One of the key areas of dissatisfaction in CRM is a mis-sold solution. Our advice is simple - take a proper look at what the current and potential needs for organising customer interactions are in your company. Are your relationships long lasting or brief, do you re-sell or look to cross-sell? Do you need to link other departments and people together on a shared system? All of these requirements have tools that suit them, and very often contact management, for example, is enough. Sometimes more of an investment is needed. Work with an expert to assess this, it need not be expensive and it could save you much money and hassle in the long term.
2. Customers are everywhere: clients, vendors, employees, mentors
It used to be easy to define the word customer. But companies are becoming more diverse, with multiple locations, employees who telecommute and vendors who function as partners. The idea of customer has broadened to include a wide range of end-users of different kinds of corporate information. For example, employees are customers when they need self-service information on pension plans or other benefits. Shareholders are customers when theyre looking for financial information. Vendors are customers when they need detailed specifications before they can proceed with a project. A colleague is a customer when you need to deliver time critical data. And, of course, the buyer is always a customer whose experience is critical

4. CRM solutions are different for mid-size companies
Some software companies selling CRM would have you believe that you need to buy what they call an enterprise solution that includes all the bells and whistles required for the largest of global enterprises. But for small to mid-size companies this may mean paying for more capacity than is required. In fact, the price of these systems is often so high that any company smaller than a FTSE 500 firm cannot reasonably afford one. But other vendors have created CRM solutions with the mid-sized company in mind, offering applications that include virtually all of the features common in enterprise solutions, but at a cost that is reasonable for smaller scale users. Even better, many of these solutions can be scaled from as little as a single user to as many as you are likely to need in the future. With a CRM solution designed for mid-sized companies, you can start small and grow big without ever wasting your valuable resources on capacity you dont need. You buy what you need, when you need it. Another benefit of CRM solutions designed from the ground up for mid-sized companies is that they are easier to implement and are fully functional right out of the box. Maybe larger enterprises have the time and resources to spend tailoring a solution and integrating it into their enterprise. But mid-sized companies want a CRM solution that they can get up and running easily, quickly and at minimal cost. And they want one that can be seamlessly integrated with back office systems such as accounting - without the need for custom programming.

5. Planning Pays

To ensure a successful CRM project, planning is essential. Begin by defining the need for a CRM solution. Arm yourself with the background information to justify the investment costs and to demonstrate where the benefits, savings and Return on Investment will come from. Next, define the stakeholders in the project and use the needs analysis and benefits projections as a foundation for establishing a common, company-wide goal for CRM. With this groundwork completed, you can now establish a budget, planning for the costs associated with identifying vendors, testing solutions, implementation, integration, training and support. A team should then be assembled to begin the drive towards completion of the project - a drive that begins with a clear description of your companys CRM objectives and any processes that will have to be modified to make the project successful. Make sure the head of this team is a CRM champion someone who completely believes that CRM will make a difference. Good planning will involve discussions with internal and external customers. What are the best practices for your sales force, for your marketing team, for customer service? Also consider the various types of data that are important to track for each group involved. Data required by different groups of system users, such as field sales representatives, may be different from those of customer service agents. Plan for the needs of each group by confirming that your data requirements list is complete. Remember: any person who requires information available through the CRM solution should be considered a system user, whether he or she is an internal staff member, an external partner, or a customer.

6. Prepare for product demonstrations
Once possible products and vendors are identified, a demo will be a critical factor in determining which solution is best for your company. But before inviting vendors representatives to perform their demos be sure you have told them exactly what you are looking for. Why waste time evaluating a product that may be very functional but just will not work in your environment? Also be sure to find out from the vendor what platform is required to run the demo. Again, dont waste time scheduling a demo only to find out you dont have the right hardware or the right operating system to support the product. When comparing several products it is advisable to establish a scoring system that makes it easy to track the various benefits and shortcoming of each product being evaluated. By tabulating these scores, the decision process is often simplified. But be sure to include qualitative information in these lists, such as a vendors history of innovation, customer satisfaction, financial stability and so on. And finally, make sure the CRM implementation team attends the demo, and encourage them to share their concerns and feedback. If the vendor or reseller cannot immediately address any issues raised, make sure they do so in a reasonable time frame. Responsiveness is often a key differentiator in the vendor selection process, so some planned tough questions may be critical to making a selection you can live with long into the future.
7. Implement relevant technology
When you choose a CRM system, make sure its based on current technology. Dont let a salesperson talk you into product vaporware based on future promises. Insist on seeing a current version of the product as it can be deployed today. Equally important, dont accept old technology thats past its peak performance curve. You dont want to have to replace the system in the near future. Look at what is in the product roadmap, planned enhancements and other features that reassure you that this is a product being invested in by the vendor for the long term. Take a view on its integration capabilities and plans and the relevance to your back office systems. Decide whether the interface and usability is suited to your user type - i.e. for a power user keyboard short cuts might be better, for ease of use a web-based interface might be more appropriate. A good business consultancy will be able to help you make the right decision.

8. CRM is not a single department solution
CRM solutions should provide company-wide benefits. But many products that claim to be CRM applications only address a single functional area such as marketing, sales force automation or customer support. True, these role-specific solutions may be adequate for their specific intended purpose. But what happens when your requirements broaden? If you implement a dedicated sales force automation solution, for instance, and down the road realise that you also need to automate your marketing efforts, you have to start from scratch, looking for vendors,trying products - and wasting time. Plus, youll be faced with two separate products, two separate vendors and no single point of contact for support and problem resolution. Even worse, with multiple point solutions, how will you share information across your company? Will information captured by the sales force automation solution be leveraged in new marketing campaigns? Will marketing campaign data find its way to the customer support centre where cross-selling opportunities could be made, or lost? While it is true that custom code can be written to integrate products, a true CRM solution provides the functionality of any single function solution, as well as a cost-free, seamless way to add features and capabilities whenever you need them. So, if your needs require it, dont settle for anything less than a comprehensive solution that delivers on the true promise of CRM: Marketing campaign management Sales force automation Customer care Contact management Task management/scheduling
9. Integration with back-office systems can speed Return On Investment
One area many companies overlook when evaluating CRM solutions is the fact that accounts payable and accounts receivable data can form an integral part of CRM. If a customer calls to order a product, for example, wouldnt it be beneficial to instantly know whether that customers accounts are up to date? Although some CRM solutions offer patches to link back to an accounting system, others offer this seamless integration out of the box. The cost benefits of this approach are so great that some companies report an immediate ROI because they were able to get their application up and running without incurring the high costs of custom integration.

10. Multi-channel access is the only way to go
To be truly effective, a CRM solution needs to support customers on their own terms. This means delivering the information into the hands of agents who respond to customer inquiries over the telephone, fax, e-mail or written letters. And, of course, in this Internet age, the CRM solution should also support interactive Web chat with customers and make a wide range of information available to them over robust Web sites. For internal staff, such as field service employees and sales staff, the solution should also support all standard wireless devices; solutions that are restricted to a single device or operating system will become too limiting as this technology evolves. With support for PDAs, for example, sales reps can get real time updates about the prospects or customers they are about to visit - before they walk through the door.
11. Delivery Method that is right for your company
An item of increasing relevance to many companies is whether they want to actually bring their CRM solution in house; the alternative being that they give their data to a provider to host and the company itself only accesses information through a browser. Companies need to decide for themselves how comfortable they are with the data stored outside the company. It is difficult to provide guidance except to say that it is vital to check out the security and recovery arrangements of anyone that is hosting the data. Another consideration for smaller companies is telco connection charges as well as looking at total cost of ownership over a 2 or 3 year period for a renting model over an ownership model. For larger companies one must consider whether the compromises inherent in the system in terms of its ability to be integrated and customised are something that can be lived with. That all considered a rental model (or ASP, i.e. from an Application Service Provider) has terrific advantages in terms of maintenance, cost of hardware and ease of upgrades (albeit compulsory) and for smaller businesses in particular needs to be considered. project cycles are short. In essence they are in many ways the opposite of the project and product types we see at the enterprise level. By all means, particularly for larger projects, take time to assess enterprise products in their mid-market apparitions but take time to ask: What has been delivered in the middle market by this company? What does a mid-market product mean; enterprise with features removed? Experience of their middle market partners of delivering on time and to budget. What works out of the box in these products and what needs to be customised? Look at the overall cost of sale in particular with a likely extended project cycle.

13. CRM is not for any single department, its for the whole company
Often, the sales department will be motivated to implement CRM long before other groups get on board. And it can be a great strategy to implement the new software one department at a time. But dont lose sight of your overall goal, which should be to implement CRM throughout the company. Youll get immediate results by putting CRM into Sales, Customer Service or Support departments. But when you have everyone in the company connected to CRM - when everyone has instant access to the critical information they need to keep driving business forward thats when youll see the most exciting benefits of CRM. Its great to start your implementation with a departmental focus, but keep your larger goals in mind.
12. Experience in the wrong sector is very often the wrong experience
A recent trend in CRM is the movement of enterprise vendors into the middle market space as the larger sites are saturated or locked in with one CRM vendor or another. The solutions and experience of these vendors can often seem impressive, but the question needs to be asked as to how relevant working with a Top 5 consultancy on a multi-million pound project with almost complete soup to nuts customisation is to your company. The realities of the middle market are very different. Budgets are tight, projects are tightly aligned to ROI, products must deliver a large proportion out of the box and the
14. Implementation method is as important as product choice
Just as a chain is only as good as its weakest link, a CRM solution is only as good as its implementation. The best product in the world will not meet expectations unless it is implemented in a way that matches your requirements. Once youve chosen a product, make sure it will work for your environment by creating a blueprint describing your goals and expectations for the implementation before the implementation process begins. Any questions regarding these expectations should be directed to an implementation team member who is designated as the liaison between the vendor and/or the consultant or reseller handling the implementation. Beyond loading software on to a server and tailoring it to specific needs, a CRM implementation requires the involvement of all employees who will be using the system. Fail to obtain this support and you can safely assume that the system will not be fully utilised. Instead, reassure staff that they will receive all training required and that the system will make them more productive while making their jobs easier. Make the system even more alluring by letting all stakeholders and end users know how the implementation process is progressing. The result: they will become eager for the process to be completed and to get up and running on the new system.

16. Test, or crash and burn
Dont overlook the importance of testing the software implementation before rolling it out. A test that involves mock customer data can be invaluable in determining how well the system receives and processes information. Better to find a glitch pre-roll-out than to get stuck on one when talking to a customer. As part of this testing process be sure that all backoffice integration is working properly. Make a list of typical operations that end-users will engage in, and test each and every one. Try to access data from the accounting system, for example, before a customer service agent needs to actually do so. Try to update customer data in the centralised database and make sure those updates are available throughout the system.
17. Focus on CRM goals: improve customer satisfaction, shorten sales cycles and increase revenue
Never lose sight of the fact that the customer is the reason for your CRM implementation. Get feedback from customers to see if their satisfaction levels are really increasing, or if there are improvements they would like to see. If you chose your CRM solution carefully, it should be flexible enough to adapt to evolving customer needs. And dont overlook your end-user groups. Could the sales staff benefit from an updated synchronisation system with their Laptops that lets them access contact information directly from their Laptop without always signing onto the CRM system? Would the marketing department like to see a new kind of analytical report that links post-sale collections data to campaign type? Keep the communication channels open after rollout and keep your CRM solution rolling along. Equally important, never overlook the power of CRM to self-monitor. Set up metrics that the system can track and always be sure that you are, in fact, increasing customer satisfaction, shortening sales cycles, improving efficiency, winning customers from the competition, increasing profitability per customer and boosting bottom-line sales.
15. Training cant be on the job. Employee buy-in is the key to a successful CRM implementation
Good training, tailored to the different skill levels of employees, is essential. Dont bore a technically adept sales manager with a beginners level dissertation on using a computer-based scheduler. And dont intimidate a customer service agent with techno-speak about the ins and outs of back-end integration. Just as you tailor the product for your environment, tailor the training to the end-user. These training programs should begin before rollout to ensure end-users are ready to use the system when it is ready for them. In addition, this early training will add to the enthusiasm for the rollout and lay the groundwork for widespread acceptance.

About Sage and CRM

Sage provides CRM solutions to mid sized enterprises. With 16 years experience in the development of products that provide businesses with the ability to manage and report on all customer centred activity. There are over four million users of our CRM solutions, which can either stand alone or be fully integrated into existing systems, to give a single view of all customer and contact activity.

ACT! by Sage 2009

A simple but powerful contact management system, ACT! by Sage 2009 centralises your contact information, organises your diary, and tracks sales leads. Easy to set up and use it has all the features needed to get your sales and marketing in order - organising you, your contacts and your business.

Sage SalesLogix

Sage SalesLogix is the Customer Relationship Management solution that enables small to medium-sized businesses to cultivate profitable customer relationships by increasing sales and marketing performance and maximising customer satisfaction and loyalty. Designed to meet the distinct needs of small to medium-sized businesses, Sage SalesLogix delivers integrated Sales, Marketing, Customer Service and Support automation solutions that adapt to your unique customer acquisition, retention and development processes. Sage SalesLogix provides a complete CRM solution with low cost of ownership, rapid time to productivity and high return on investment. Flexible and easy to use, Sage SalesLogix readily accommodates growth and changing business requirements. SalesLogix, the SMB CRM leader with more than 8,00 customers worldwide, is part of the Sage family of integrated business management solutions.

Sage CRM

Sage CRM is an easy to use, fast to deploy, feature rich, low cost of ownership CRM solution designed to introduce the real benefits of CRM from small to medium-sized companies. Offering a choice of deployment, either on your premise or on demand (SageCRM.com), to meet your infrastructure needs. Sage CRM aggregates individual and group efforts across sales, marketing and support teams making people and companies more efficient allowing you to get ahead of the competition. Sage CRM delivers the tools entirely through a browser to take advantage of the huge efficiencies that the Internet offers in delivering business applications. Sage CRM is also available as the CRM module in two of our business management suites, Sage 200 and Sage 1000, for true end-to-end business processes maximizing your investment in CRM.
Talk to us! t: UK: 0064 / ROI: 8990 e: sage@pinnacle-online.com w: www.pinnacle-online.com
Sage CRM Sage House Wharfedale Road Winnersh Wokingham Berkshire RG41 5RD Telephone: 9988 Email: customer.development@sage.com Sage (UK) Limited 2008 registered in England No. 1045967 11/08 4193R

To talk to us about how Sage CRM Solutions might help your company, call us on the dedicated CRM number or for ACT! call 0276

 

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