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Selecting a CRM System


secure crm




Secure CRM supports several packages.

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Selecting a CRM System is about matching your requrments to a CRM System. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology has historically been seen by SMEs as prohibitively expensive and restricted to the domain of big businesses. But not anymore, SMEs are finding CRM a powerful tool to improve customer satisfaction and speed up the process of understanding customer behaviour. It makes it easier to analyse past sales and improve the prediction of future revenue on a per client biases.

CRMs provide a single data store for all customer information and help make the information easily accessible. As a result customers can enjoy a consistent and personalised experience in every communication with your company.

Key benefits

  • Single repository for all customer and pipeline information
  • Highly accessible customer contact information and history of correspondence and business transactions
  • Integration with backend systems, like accounts provide a joined up view of your customers

Online CRM also called Hosted CRM

Hosted CRM solutions offer a traditional CRM desktop application published to you desktop or laptop computer over the Internet. Theses solutions offer you the richness of a full desktop application with the flexibility of accessing it from anywhere at any time over the Internet.

Online or hosted CRM solutions offer an affordable low monthly fee. It is quick to start using them as there is nothing to install on any computers or servers. This means you can get started without help from an IT consultant and there is no need for you to have a dedicated system administrator. Because there is no upfront investment in hardware or software, you can start small and scale your costs according to your growth and adoption though departments.

With this solution customer information can be accessed by a mobile workforce as easily as office based staff. Your online CRM solution provider offers 24-hour a day secure access from any location in the world so your employees have access to the information they need when they need it.

Because the CRM database is hosted externally you don’t have to worry about data loss or your information disappearing when sales staff leave. You own your database and if you decide to move the CRM system onsite or to another online vendor you can readily arrange to transfer the database. Similarly, if you have existing databases then it you can uploaded into the hosted environment.

Onsite CRM

If your business already has an IT department with system administrators, who are not already stretched beyond capacity and a data centre and you are not considering outsourcing your IT needs then running your CRM system internally has benefits.

Every company has its own "legacy" systems; the databases, applications, and web tools that it has relied on for some time. With sufficient in-house expertise then this can often offer the most cost effective way to ensure these are integrated into a coherent system.

Most in-house, on site CRM packages have their roots as single workstation solutions. They have been expanded into multiple user environments by connecting client PCs to a common server. With this architecture you can still provide remote access to your mobile staff but it requires an IT specialist to set up a secure Virtual Private Network (VPN) and expose your server on the Internet. For all but the biggest companies and the access to well trained and reliable staff this approach can create a security and IT nightmare.

Website CRM

Most CRM providers have been writing web enabled versions of their desktop software web enabled Doing this can offers many of the benefits of a hosted CRM but there are a few remaining draw backs. Web applications that run in a browser are never as powerful as a proper desktop application and the user experience is compromised. There are less features than in the equivalent desktop application and the bespoke databases often cannot be moved to a non-website based CRM. If you are going to run it internally then you will need access IT support staff.


For more information on how to roll out a CRM solution successfully read planning and managing a CRM System rollout.


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