Four Traits to Consider When Buying On-Premise CRM
Your company has recognized the need for a customer relationship management (CRM) solution, and has decided that the on-premise approach is the best way to go. But, which on-premise CRM application is the right one for your business, and what criteria should you use when comparing one vendor to the next?
While needs and requirements will vary greatly from one company to the next, there are certain traits you should be on the lookout for when you evaluate an on-premise CRM application. These include:
Deep Customization Capabilities
One of the key advantages that on-premise CRM customers gain over their on-demand counterparts is the ability to custom-tailor their solution to meet specific needs, or to support unique customer-facing processes.
Be sure to select an on-premise CRM vendor who offers in-depth customization functionality. So you can alter the interface, have new features custom-developed, and more based on your individual requirements. Whether or not you need it now, customization may be very useful in the future as your business grows and your operations become more complex.
Ease of Implementation and Administration
Companies who purchase an on-premise CRM application must dedicate a team of IT professionals to the installation and testing of all hardware and software, as well as rollout of the solution to end users. Additionally, they must allocate IT resources to the continuous monitoring and management of the system.
Since IT staff members will have to find a way to juggle deployment and administration of your new on-premise CRM system with other critical corporate technology initiatives, it is recommended that you select a solution that is simple to implement and maintain.
Organizations that opt for the on-demand approach to CRM only need to think short-term when it comes to their commitment to a specific solution. Since service contracts are usually only a year or two in length, new third-party service providers can be selected as requirements evolve over time, if their current vendor is unable to meet their changing needs.
On the other hand, users of on-premise CRM software must think far into the future. On-premise CRM requires a significant upfront investment – both in terms of finances and effort. So, the solution you choose must not only satisfy your existing needs, it must be able to scale to support more users and increasingly sophisticated procedures and activities as your company expands.
Sales and marketing professionals – who will be the primary users of your on-premise CRM system – may reside in branch offices, or travel frequently. Yet they still need access to vital customer data in order to most effectively perform their jobs, even when they’re not at company headquarters. Therefore, you must purchase and implement an on-premise CRM solution with mobile or remote access capabilities. Some on-premise CRM solutions are client/server-based with synchronization capabilities, while others are Web-based and can be accessed from any Web-enabled PC or handheld device.