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saas crm CRM Software Review

Data Center Uptime and Security’s hosted delivery infrastructure has been the subject of repeated negative publicity. Several recurring site outages as well as some highly public security breaches involving the loss of confidential information from high profile customers such as payroll provider ADP and banking giant Sun Trust have not bode well for the CRM software leader ( However, since the most recent security compromises the on-demand CRM software company appears to have implemented proactive steps to prevent the recurrence of these issues and also added to provide a public view of data center availability and application interruptions. Checks during the creation of this document indicated one North American service center in difficulty for 8 hours due to an incorrect maintenance parameter (clearly some problems persist). downtime

To further minimize the fears of potential customers, offers a database mirroring service for customers purchasing the Enterprise edition and above. These customers have access to a weekly export service (also available to Professional Edition users for additional fee).

Overall has a comprehensive global data center infrastructure with data centers in North America, Europe and most recently in Asia Pacific. In May 2008, announced the creation of its first international data center in Singapore (which it collocates and shares with a customer). The data center is expected to go live before the end of 2008 and will support both Asia and North American customers according to statements made by the company. It is unclear at this stage whether the data centers will operate in an active-active fail-over mode or more of a cold site fail over capacity. acquires an AICPA SAS 70 audit which may provide some comfort to SEC governed companies in the United States in support of their Sarbanes Oxley, section 404 compliance requirements. It also holds TRUSTe privacy, VeriSign Secured and a certification from auditors Ernst & Young.

Interestingly enough, does not offer a standard Service Level Agreement (SLA) within its contractual subscription agreement. It seems that in most cases only’s larger or more influential customers are able to secure contractual service level agreements. Thus, depending on the criticality of application availability in your environment, it may be worth trying to determine exactly what commitments the company is prepared to make before you sign the contract.

Services, Support and Training

Configuration Services delivers implementation and related professional services and training through Successforce Consulting and a business partner network. Successforce Consulting is the banner under which provides professional services support for their solutions. A popular suite of support programs entitled “QuickStart” provide support for both new and existing customers. The QuickStart family of services includes the following:

QuickStart Assist: An on-site or remote service that helps new customers configure the SaaS CRM software application;

QuickStart Optimize: An on-site or remote service that helps existing customers configure their SaaS application to address their key business processes. will also provide tailored services to support larger projects as well as the “Success Coach”, an online program of support offered to customers with 10 or less users.

Data Migration
The company offers separate professional services packages to support data migration for companies less than 50 users. These packages represent the classic migrations from competitive SFA solutions (Act!, Goldmine, MS CRM and others). These services are reasonably priced between $2500 and $4500. This service does not include:

  • Application configuration or setup
  • Data cleansing or de-duplication
  • Incremental test data migration imports beyond the single import provided in the package

For implementations in excess of 50 users a customized service proposal is required.

Training offers an outstanding portfolio of online training collaterals that include a comprehensive help manual, online tutorials and best practice guidelines. The online training courses are quite basic, well structured and easy to follow. The company will also tailor training materials and create a separate training program based on specific requirements. has recently augmented their training program with a full certification for Administrators offered through a series of publicly available seminars starting at $3000.

Customer Support offers basic but unlimited case support for all CRM software editions. Response time (not to be confused with the more important resolution time) is guaranteed within two business days. Live telephone support is available but the hours depend on the CRM software edition purchased. Basic support (standard for Group, Professional and Enterprise) is available 5 days per week for 12 hours per day. Only with the Premier Support level is live telephone support available 24 by 7. Premier Support is also given priority queue routing and toll free phone access. Customers are given access to the online self service portal that allows incidents to be submitted online and subsequently tracked.

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