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Open Source CRM Software Solutions FAQ


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Open Source CRM Software Solutions FAQ

Dec 1, 2015

Aptean Staff Writer


  • Compiere is changing the economics of enterprise applications by making Customer Relationship Management (CRM) easier. Easier to acquire. Easier to implement. Easier to extend. Easier to change.
  • Our innovative Model Driven Architecture gives you unprecedented adaptability, speed of deployment and low cost of ownership.
  • The web user interface on Compiere ERP and CRM solution improves productivity, accelerates user adoption and expands accessibility.

What Is CRM Software?

CRM is Customer Relationship Management, also sometimes known as relationship marketing or customer management. CRM is often used to refer to software applications that support the CRM business process, but CRM is more than just software, it is a way of doing business.

CRM methodologies focus on creating and developing individualized customer relationships in order to maintain a loyal customer base. It's quite a bit less expensive to maintain a good relationship with an existing customer than to woo a new customer, so purchasing software that helps enhance a customer's experience has become a popular business practice. By implementing a program where sales, marketing, distribution and customer service representatives can all easily access a customer's history of past interactions with the company, enterprises can maximize their ability to upgrade or cross-sell to customers. Also, the company increases its chance of customer satisfaction through quicker resolution of any issues that a customer might have.

What Makes Compiere CRM Software Better?

The Compiere CRM tool is an open source application that comes fully integrated in the Compiere ERP and CRM package. When you marry the benefits of a great CRM tool with great ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) tools, you have the best opportunity to create a satisfied and loyal customer base. Traditionally ERP has the notion of a back-office application attached to it, while CRM (customer relations management) concentrated on the front-office, i.e. the sales effort. However, today's business person realizes that customer loyalty and satisfaction are significant sources of new lead generation and potential revenue in all enterprises. When ERP and CRM work together they help insure customer satisfaction by tracking every portion of the transaction and any subsequent customer issues. This information is then easily accessible by customer service representatives, or even by the customer themselves through various automated systems, whenever the customer has inquiries.

Compiere is designed with the philosophy that the front-office directly drives the business. Total customer orientation is a must and the entire business needs to support this. The first sale is made by a sales person, the following sales are made by production, shipping, call centers, accounting. With Compiere, you always have the 360 degree view for your customer and product related activities enabling one-to-one marketing.

Compiere's unparalleled flexibility makes it a perfect tool for the front office. Change is inevitable in any business, so don't get stuck with a system that won't transition with you as your company sets new priorities and goals. With Compiere, all of the information you provide during implementation can be adapted or modified at any time to meet the changing needs and demands of your company. By choosing Compiere, you can reduce hidden organizational, on-going-integration, operational and maintenance costs.

Does My Enterprise Need CRM Software?

If you have a very small clientele, you can probably easily remember your customers and their individual preferences, so it isn't hard to anticipate their needs. CRM comes rather naturally to most business people in that situation. In larger companies, though, CRM software can be a critical component in an enterprise, helping them track individual customer orders and requests to provide excellent customer service. CRM also offers your enterprise the ability to offer upgrades or to cross-sell products to customers in an intelligent manner based on their previous purchase history. If your company is large enough that you lack personalized customer service and you suspect you are missing out on opportunities to create a loyal customer base then you would want to consider implementing a CRM system.

Can CRM Solutions Improve My Company’s Business Performance?

Compiere ERP and CRM solutions give you the ability to save time and money across your entire enterprise. With ERP software you need only input customer, vendor, and order data once and then share it across your functional departments. You can automate inventory and warehouse procedures as well as billing and accounting procedures. You can use ERP applications to create reports and analyze enterprise trends quickly and easily, allowing you to respond quickly to shifts in the market. Compiere also helps make e-commerce easy. The information in our Web Store is shared with the standard application, so no synchronization or extra integration work is required.

What Are the Costs Associated With CRM Software Implementation?

Compiere open source ERP and CRM software offers a significant savings over traditional ERP and CRM applications. Use the money you save to create a successful implementation for your particular enterprise. Compiere Partners are available world-wide to help you create industry specific features that can address your particular needs. Also, be sure to budget resources for training your staff on the new software. Consider the possibility that years of working with multiple incompatible data sources may have left you with "dirty data" that needs to be cleaned up prior to importation in the new CRM system. Or, perhaps you've decided that now is the time to upgrade some of your servers or workstations. However you decide to use the money you've saved, you can feel confident that Compiere provides you the best ERP and CRM solution at the lowest total cost of ownership.

Unlike many open source software products Compiere offers support service for your business. The right support edition for your business depends on a number of factors such as the size of your organization and the support services your business requires. Four Compiere editions deliver exceptional business value and meet a broad variety of ERP functionality and support needs.

Compiere Enterprise Edition is for companies that need the most sophisticated enterprise-class functionality, usability and support from their Compiere ERP solution. Enterprise Edition includes complete Community Edition functionality plus Multi-server support, Management Dashboards, Visual Dictionary Editor, and Dynamic Web Services support.

Compiere Community Edition is ERP and CRM for Java developers who want to take advantage of Compiere's adaptable open source ERP and CRM software. Compiere Community Edition binary and source code are freely distributed. The Community Edition does not include migration tools or support from Compiere, Inc. or Compiere Authorized Partners. Compiere Community Edition is distributed under a GPL open source license.

How Long Will a CRM Implementation Take?

The actual installation of Compiere can be done in a day or two by experienced IT staff. However, keep in mind that implementation of any ERP and CRM system also includes importing old data from various sources into the new system, the integration and testing of the new system with existing corporate software, the training of employees on the use of the new system, and the completion of any enterprise-specific customizations. The whole process traditionally takes several months to a year depending on the size and complexity of your business.

Compiere's flexibility makes the installation process much easier than a similar installation with traditional ERP and CRM software because, unlike other enterprise applications, with Compiere the decisions you make today can be changed tomorrow. All of the information provided during implementation can be adapted or modified at any time to meet the changing needs and demands of your company. Other systems don't allow these on-the-fly changes. The result is that with these traditional ERP and CRM applications, changing anything - whether something complex, like your chart of accounts or even something as simple as a product search key - can require expensive and time consuming modifications or even complete product reinstallations.

How Difficult Is It To Upgrade CRM Software?

Compiere presents another break-through in ERP and CRM software - an easily upgradeable application! While many traditional ERP and CRM companies sold the promise of free upgrades, in reality hardly any businesses were able to take advantage of them because they had spent large sums of money customizing the software for their industry and thus had voided their support contract. But easy upgrades aren't just a sales pitch with Compiere because Compiere was built to make customizations and extensions simple without impacting the migration process. No longer does your system need to remain static, as if frozen in time. Now you really can keep up with all the latest product features without sacrificing your custom extensions.

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