Analyst and vendor urge CRM integration

Businesses are not deriving full benefit from their enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementations because of undue focus on individual components, according to regional software provider, Exact Software Middle East.

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By  Alicia Buller Published  July 21, 2004

Businesses are not deriving full benefit from their enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementations because of undue focus on individual components, according to regional software provider, Exact Software Middle East. The company’s comments support an IDC report predicting that spending on analytical customer relationship management (CRM) will outstrip investment in reporting and operational procedures over the next three years. The report says that, two years ago, the mass market for CRM concentrated on operational deployments, with a minority of businesses investing in data analysis. According to IDC the focus is shifting, with customers increasingly adopting analytical CRM software for their day-to-day processes. “In order to deliver maximum business value, CRM systems can’t ‘stand alone’ – they must collect and manage operational information from a human resources and logistics perspective as well as from customers themselves,” says Nizar Badwan, general manager at Exact Software. “This way, organisations in the region can ensure that they have the resources and processes in place to actually meet the customer demand that they create through new services.” “Analysis is essential for the nurturing of good customer relationships, as CRM has as much to do with business development as it does with daily operational processes,” said Badwan. “Businesses are right to be investing more in analytical CRM applications, but should not do so at the expense of transactional procedures or the advantages offered by an integrated approach to ERP,” adds Badwan.

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