Microsoft CRM Implementation - US market lessons

By: Andrew Karasev

Microsoft CRM is CRM answer from Microsoft Business Solutions. If you compare it to other traditional CRM applications, such as Siebel - you will see that Microsoft CRM does use all the resent Microsoft technologies, that means that Microsoft targets its CRM to Windows market exclusively, plus this means that Microsoft CRM is more difficult in its installation. Microsoft doesn't even have to care about other platforms, such as Linux/Unix or Apple. Now - we see kind of paradoxical situation when Microsoft CRM is gaining market share even in recession and early post-recession time. Where is the secret?

Let us give you our vision, based on our three years of MS CRM implementation practice in USA and internationally.

1.Microsoft CRM is for MCSE / Microsoft oriented IT departments – Microsoft CRM would be be-loved system for IT specialists.

If you are MCSE+I - CRM will recruit all your MS Exchange, Active Directory, MS SQL Server, Windows domain security, Windows 2003 Server, Web publishing and HTML knowledge and experience. This is completely opposite to earlier Apple Computer believe - that computer systems should be easy in service and completely intuitive. MS CRM is kind of intuitive for end user, but not for its administrator.

2.Microsoft CRM - is not CRM - but rather simplified CRM - if you do remember old days whitepapers about CRM in general, or even it's predecessor - Lotus Notes/Domino - these papers were full of predictions about the future and were written for top level company executives, not for regular computer specialists. This was probably why so high percentage of CRM sales failed in implementations. Microsoft CRM has the highest ever rate of successful implementations, because it is not a CRM, but rather popularized version of it - it just does the job - as cheap and reliable car.

3.Transportation Companies - about 30% of our clients in the States are transportation and freight forwarding companies. This actually proves the hypothesis that MS CRM is very simple solution - these companies usually do not have extra money to spend on their computer system, but need the solution for its sales people to instantly see the cargos, plus have simple customization, allowing them to integrate with legacy system.

4.Movement down to small and tiny companies – this is completely new trend for CRM market. We know the examples when 5 employees companies make a decision to implement and have surprising success in Microsoft CRM implementation.

Happy implementing!

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