From Sunday Business Post, Computers in Business, 2 Sept 2012
by Leslie Faughnan
Putting the customer at the centre is the traditional mantra of CRM vendors, but at least one Irish consultant believes that this does not begin to cover the reach of a modern CRM solution.
“The customers or the prospects do not exist or act in isolation, and you want to know how they behave in relation to, for example, alternative sellers or services,” said Gary Cullen, director of Provident CRM, Irish agent for Sugar CRM, the only commercial open-source product in this category.
“Traditional CRM regards the firewall as a boundary,” he said. “But today, you want to be able to look at your relationship with customers in the context of their other relationships.
“Sugar aims to see what is happening and being said outside and around the business, on Facebook or Twitter or bulletin boards – and to bring that knowledge and awareness into the business to that it can be used to some market advantage.”
Cullen said this was not instead of the traditional CRM role as the custodian system for all customer information and history. Sugar CRM users in this country include Liberty Insurance, BIM and the LGMA (which administers the Second Home tax scheme, among other national tasks).
“A key point is that Sugar CRM is a set of flexible resources from which the business can construct a system to suit its specific needs and change with them,” said Cullen.
“For example, we have some NHS clients in Britain and several of them use Sugar as the platform for their Patient Reminder systems, to call or text or email patients with appointment reminders to minimise ‘no-shows’.”
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