A week ago we switched CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems.  Months in planning, the switch has been made across our entire company operations. From reception to sales to customer service, we have all switched to this new software platform.

The decision to switch was easy. The hard part was finding a CRM system which served the broad needs of our software company. We trialled a range of products over the last year and found some wanting. We needed something which was as close as possible to a whole of business solution or could be tailored to be a whole of business solution.

We decided to switch to Sugar Professional following additional trials which included considerable customisation to meet our needs.

We have been live with the new system now for just over a week and we have survived. We’ve not lost any data and we were able to remain live and supporting our customers throughout the transition.

It is interesting going through a whole of business software change ourselves. This is what we put our new customers through. It has been interesting being on the other side of the sales counter. Some good learnings have come our way and for that bonus we are grateful.

It is at our Help Desk that the benefits of the new system are most evident already. Customer data can be accessed much faster and with fewer keystrokes.

As calls are closed, customers are notified by email with the details of the advice and other information sent in the email. Customers are invited to rate the call and the help desk service. This can be done in seconds and will provide us a real-time assessment of our performance.

Over the next few months we will introduce refinements and customisations to leverage the extensive benefits of Sugar. Some of these will enhance the customer experience … we will keep our customers posted on these developments.

One of our customers asked why we didn’t write our own CRM system. We are experts at developing retail management software. For the best CRM solution we decided to consider CRM experts. This makes sense to us.