My company currently has two databases, the first database manages prospects, the second manages customers. I am looking for a way to combine these into one main database and the only solution I can find is a CRM. I was given a demonstration of Microsoft Dynamics and was highly impressed on how easy it was to customize. I received the quote for it and for 11 users it was going to cost $23,000 thats after they install and configure and do training for the 11 users. Has anyone had any experience with Dynamics, if so how is it? If your not using Dynamics what are you using? Thanks in advance.
I've been using Dynamics since 1997 when it was 4.0; before Microsoft bought the company. I'm running an older version; eEnterprise 6.0 and have it working with Talisma CRM. It's been very solid and incredibly easy to customize.
You must be looking at running Dynamics with Microsoft CRM is what it sounds like? That's probably much smoother then what I'm running. We have to write all of our own CRM integration customizations in order to get updates from the ERP into the CRM and back the other way.
Two of the big benefits to running Dynamics are the multi-dimensional pricing capabilities and the Order Pipelines that can be exposed from your website. This will allow your eCommerce sites to write orders right into the Accounting System at various price levels based on your customers price structure. You'll want to understand if this still uses Commerce Server to enable this feature because if it does there's an additional license fee for Commerce Server.
It has also stood the test of time w/o a support contract. When we put this ERP in we thought that we might be able to reasonably get a 15 year life cycle out of it and we're at 9 years now. We've also done 2 major upgrades to the original version on our own, which is how we got to 6.0. At the time the support contract was just about 40K per year. We decided to forgo that and so far it's saved us roughly 360K.
We have been using open source SugarCRM for two years now, and it works fairly well. We have it running on a dedicated server with about 10 users, and the price was right. There are a few hangups with it - no support for older versions (I was willing to pay for an upgrade, and they wouldnt take my money) and it doesnt actually process an order into your accounting system. The record keeping is good, it is fairly quick and has lots of plugins available. Their paid version is reasonably priced, but the way we use it (dummy users that exceed the actual number of employees) makes it more than I want to spend.
My only desire is that it would have a more complete integration like NetSuite or similar. But what do I want for free? I have just hired a full time IT person for my little operation, and he is a big open source enthusiast and is making plans for writing the integrations we need. We will then post them for public use on the sugarforge website. This could take 2 months or 2 years, so don't hold your breath.