CRM Industry Leaders

By Brian Boguhn
Updated: February 10, 2011

There are many established companies in the marketplace that offer Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions to assist businesses with their CRM approach. This article will take a look at three of the top companies and discuss why each is a leader in the CRM industry, as well as give a brief overview of their tops products.

What is CRM?

For those new to the topic, a brief look at CRM is helpful. CRM is a means for managing a company’s dealings with customers, clients, and sales prospects. Through the use of technology, CRM helps a company acquire new business, retain the clients it has, bring former clients back into the fold, and enhance the customer service it offers. This is all done at any eye towards reducing costs. The business processes targeted by this strategy are sales, marketing, customer service, and technical support.

CRM Industry Leaders

The CRM leaders discussed here will most likely be recognizable to most readers. Oracle, Microsoft, and SAP offer CRM solutions that are considered “cream of the crop” in the industry.

Oracle

An industry leader on many fronts, Oracle has grown into one of the leading CRM providers. In 2005, Oracle acquired Siebel Systems. Oracle Siebel is now positioned as a global frontrunner and has a leading market share in the industry. Oracle Siebel offers over 20 industry focused packages in either on-demand (acquired through the cloud; monthly fee required) or on premise (implemented on-site) options. The influence of Oracle has positioned Siebel CRM software as a powerful and flexible CRM option. If someone in the company desires a certain piece of information, Siebel can deliver it to them when they need it.

Microsoft

Always analyzing the business market to see what areas are hot, Microsoft has a CRM offering as well, Dynamics CRM. While Oracle aims more at the enterprise level, Microsoft has chosen to focus on small to medium sized businesses. The software offers a familiar interface, looking similar to other Microsoft products already implemented in many offices. This familiarity makes it attractive to companies wanting something their users will be comfortable with. Dynamics CRM offers solutions for Sales, Customer Service, and Marketing. Like Siebel, it can also be implemented through the cloud or in a local installation. The software works in conjunction with Microsoft SQL, and allows various companies to share a centralized database through multi-tenancy.

SAP

Originally known as Systems Analysis and Program Development, SAP is now simply known by its acronym. SAP CRM competitively rivals Oracle’s Siebel. SAP offers CRM as part of its Business Suite of software. According to SAP, the software “not only helps you address your short-term imperatives – to reduce cost and increase your decisions-making ability – but can also help your company achieve differentiated capabilities in order to compete effectively over the long term.” The software focuses on Marketing, Sales, Service, Contact Center, E-Commerce, and IT service. Like its competition from Oracle and Microsoft, on-demand and on-premise installation options are available.

Conclusion

The CRM market has many companies offering many solutions. If a business has already deployed solutions from a specific vendor and been pleased, they’re very likely to look at that vendor again for other products. Oracle, Microsoft, and SAP are well known names in the technology marketplace. This article has made no attempt to favor one over the other, only to give an overview of each. A successful CRM purchase and implementation will require adequate research by the customer to make sure the software that works best for them is chosen.
 

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