State Agency Implements Leading Open Source CRM

Bord Iascaigh Mhara, Ireland's Seafood Development Agency, Implements SugarCRM

Fishing TrawlerProvident CRM, the Irish Partner of SugarCRM, hashas successfully implemented SugarCRM in the Irish Sea Fisheries Board, Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), allowing the semi-state body to more effectively manage its communication and provide a deeper service to its 200 industry clients. It is believed that the project was the first open source CRM project at Government level in Ireland.

Cupertino-based SugarCRM is one of the fastest growing CRM products available globally. Businesses can choose from three packages depending on their individual requirements, ranging from a simple method of contact management through to a feature rich system that includes full sales and marketing, customer support, campaign management and analytical reporting.

The application can be used seemlessly out-of-the-box allowing users to begin reaping ROI from the very beginning, or customised to suit the specific needs of a business and its users. It’s unique in so far users can choose to host the application either in the cloud or on-premise, and gives users the flexibility to access their data in whatever location they are.

BIM is the Irish State agency responsible for developing the Irish Sea Fishing and Aquaculture industries. BIM was established under the Sea Fisheries Act 1952 and operates within the framework of the National Development Plan 2007 – 2013 (NDP), EU policies and the directives of the Board of BIM. It provides commercially relevant services designed to drive growth opportunities, add value, enhance competitiveness, and create jobs in a sustainable, natural resource based industry for the benefit of coastal communities. Their clients comprise fishermen, fish farmers, processors and all those engaged in producing Irish seafood.

According to Ian Mannix, Business Development Executive at Bord Iascaigh Mhara, who oversaw the project, the BIM Business Development division investigated and extensively evaluated a wide range of CRM systems that would allow the activity and interaction between the large number of businesses with which they deal with on a regular basis, to be recorded and supported. SugarCRM was chosen for its capabilities, ease of use and comparative low cost, the latter which drove considerable savings and lower ICT spend in line with Government guidelines. With the savings, BIM were able to adapt the system to their specific industry use resulting them achieving its objectives.

Mannix said: “The SugarCRM solution we chose offers an easily accessible record of the key divisional activities and provides a record of the levels of support and projects we have with each of our clients. It is also useful for staff members to keep themselves informed on the activities of colleagues in relation to these companies.”

Under the agreement Provident CRM customized BIM’s instance of SugarCRM so that its users are able to record key information with a ‘fisheries’ perspective, and provided implementation services so BIM’s legacy data was imported correctly. Finally, before ‘Go-Live’ Provident CRM provided a comprehensive on-site training programme to educate users on how best to use the SugarCRM system in a collaborative way. By ensuring complete user adoption BIM have realised maximum return on their investment and will continue to see increased productivity and valuable insight of their internal and external processes.

Mannix added: “We were impressed by the level of commitment demonstrated by Provident CRM, to ensure that our business requirements were met. The training they gave to our users made a big difference to the success of the project because they were able to show that the CRM system is a useful tool for everyone, and is not simply an additional workload for our staff. I believe that this is a very valuable system which will assist and record the support BIM gives to Irish seafood companies, and I’m confident it will enable us to provide even better services to them into the future.”

Gary Cullen

Aside from helping BIM to net the rewards of a successful CRM implementation from day one, Gary Cullen (pictured left), co-founder and sales director at Provident CRM, Ireland’s only SugarCRM Gold partner, said that at a time when the country’s finances are under scrutiny, it is encouringing to see Government saving the Irish taxpayer’s money with Open Source CRM Software. “Open Source software has long been an agenda point for the Government in Ireland. At a time when spending cuts are at the forefront of their 2011 budgets, like thousands of Irish CEO’s, it makes sense for them to embrace it now. The success of the Bord Iascaigh Mhara project clearly demonstrates that enterprise-class open source software solutions and cost savings do co-exist.”

Cullen added: “BIM recognised that SugarCRM, the world’s most widely used open source CRM software, is not only cost effective to implement, it offers them the flexibility to scale without exhorbitant costs that are usually associated with proprietary software.”