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CRM Basics 02/11/2009

Posted by TBoehm30 in CRM.
Tags: ,

I just read a great introduction to CRM. If you are new to the CRM arena (Customer Relationship Management) then start with this article from Technology Inc. written by Mike Gorsage of Tatum. If you are thinking of getting into this field, then start here.

I would guess that most businesses that interact with customers have some sort of CRM already in place. When I go to the grocery store, I can see the software suggest to the teller to say “Thank you for shopping here, have a nice day.” When I call the credit card company, the IVR (Interactive Voice Response) system asks me for my card number so the person on the line will know who I am when he/she answers the phone. Most people think of CRM for their sales people, but it is also used with call centers where customers call in. The CRM system will track their ‘case’ so that it gets solved efficiently. It will let the users see the call history of their customers, to know what kinds of issues they normally call about.

There must still be companies out there, that need help in tracking who their customers are and how they are spending their money. If there weren’t, then many of the CRM companies would be out of business quickly. People at those companies need to begin finding out what CRM is all about. If you are one of those people, then Wikipedia is a good place to begin researching. Don’t believe all of the statistics on usage though. I know that SAP counts all of their users, even if they don’t use the CRM modules. Siebel (Oracle) may count their users in a similar way (I don’t know), but I have heard that Siebel is a fantastic Tier 1 system.

Companies today have lots of variety to choose from. There are large and expensive systems, or small and inexpensive systems, even ‘free’ CRM. They can buy the software, lease the software, or even write some software. CRM software can be hosted on site, which has been to model for years, or have a company host it for them. CRM can be purchased in the SaaS model (Software as a Service), so that they pay another company for hosting, support, connections, and anything else having to do with the system. Licensing can be per seat, per concurrent user, or other method negotiated with the software company.

There are plenty of CRM communities to choose from. These will help you understand what is new and changing among CRM professionals. They could also help get opinions on the use of different and competing systems.

InsideCRM – Plenty of white papers and research links for unbiased directions

CRMToday– Links for researching

Toolbox for IT – Resources for technical information on CRM, and plenty of blogs

Destination CRM – Magazine format for the newest information on CRM

CRM Product Guide – Reviews of most CRM systems

There are many more websites devoted to helping CRM users, both generically and specifically aimed at certain products. Every product has their own help pages and communities to allow users to help each other.

As with any large software purchase decision, you need to think about what you need, what the requirements are, and prepare your plan to purchase. If your company is large enough to afford outside help, a consultant who has done this before can be very helpful. Look for a consulting company that doesn’t partner with the CRM company; one that isn’t trying to sell you a specific solution. What you want is a clear methodology on how to select new software. I plan to write about the software selection process in a future blog (stay tuned).

Remember it’s a global world out there and technology makes it happen.



1. CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Basics « The Power of Reflection - 02/26/2009

[…] Posted by aokimi on February 25, 2009 I just read a great article on CRM systems by Todd Boehm at his World Class Technology blog. He describes the concept of CRM and provides links to white papers, technical information and reviews of CRM systems. It’s a great resource.  Todd’s article is on his blog at: https://worldclasstech.wordpress.com/2009/02/11/crm-basics/ […]

2. Bill Bartmann - 09/06/2009

Hey good stuff…keep up the good work! 🙂

3. Bill Bartmann - 09/17/2009

Excellent site, keep up the good work. I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks,

A definite great read…:)


4. Candice Redfern - 09/24/2009

what a great site and informative posts, I will add a backlink and bookmark your site. Keep up the good work!

5. Donnieboy - 10/12/2009

Just wanted to drop you a line to say, I enjoy reading your site. I thought about starting a blog myself but don’t have the time.
Oh well maybe one day…. 🙂

6. MypeGrippize - 12/21/2009

Can anyone recommend the robust Script Deployment program for a small IT service company like mine? Does anyone use Kaseya.com or GFI.com? How do they compare to these guys I found recently: N-able N-central desktop support
? What is your best take in cost vs performance among those three? I need a good advice please… Thanks in advance!

7. MypeGrippize - 06/11/2010

What is the newest Software Deployment system out there?
I Googled the web and discovered the following:

They all look different… Does anyone has experience with any of them?
Also did anybody else hear of that software:
N-able managed service provider software ?

tboehm30 - 06/11/2010

I wouldn’t use Logmein as a software deployment system. It is for controlling a computer, as in support, or for personal use.

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