SageCRM 7.1 Released
SageCRM version 7.1 is now available! The latest version of SageCRM is now ready for Sage ERP Accpac v6.0 customers. Version 7.1 builds upon the system’s core functionality by delivering customers the ability to communicate more effectively, collaborate better internally, and compete in today’s marketplace. New features include:
- Sage e-Marketing—a powerful and fully integrated email marketing solution.
- Total Campaign Management—enables easy execution of multichannel marketing campaigns.
- Communications Management— Microsoft Exchange server integration.
- Interactive Dashboard—link multiple gadgets on a single screen.
- New Report Charts—better business management with enhanced at-a-glance reports
Most importantly to Accpac users, now in addition to the standalone SageCRM 7.1, the integrated version for Sage ERP Accpac 6.0A has also been released. Below is SageCRM 7.1 showing its new default welcome dashboard.
New Interactive Dashboard
Below is a sample dashboard with some sales analytics. Notice that the layout of the dashboard is much more freeform now, so you can arrange the various widgets anyway you like.
Additionally you can link together dashboard widgets, so you can have one widget showing a list of records linked to another widget that shows all the details for the selected record in the first widget.
Accpac Quote to Order
Of course the Sage ERP Accpac 6.0A Quotes to Orders functionality is all in the integration. The screenshot below is actually the work in progress Accpac 6.1 Quote to Orders where the screen has been “narrowed” to fit on lower resolution screens and work better in monitors portrait modes.
New URL Re-Writer
To make setup and configuration easier, SageCRM 7.1 now uses a URL re-writer to route web requests to its Tomcat server. SData requests are handled by the SageCRM Tomcat server and are an integral part of the new dashboards. In previous versions this was handled by the Jakarta redirector, but now and then there were installation problem with this caused by different versions of IIS, various group policy settings and other security settings. The goal of the new URL re-writer is to provide better flexibility in deployment and configuration as well as to provide a more reliable installation experience. Sage ERP Accpac is also considering adopting this to route Accpac SData requests for the same reasons.
Hint: for this to install properly you need to have the ASP.Net role installed into IIS.
Social Media is a major focus of SageCRM. It is being integrated into the product more and more. Plus many Social Media add-ons are being developed such as the SageCRM for Twitter extra and the Social Media Manager from Ebnu Consulting. Generally Social Media is becoming a more integral part of customer relationship management, whether seeing what people are saying about you or connecting and interacting with customers. Many people get their primary information through Facebook, LinkedIn and other sites.
All aspects of CRM are becoming more entangled with various Social Media services whether for advertising, customer feedback, support or any other type of interaction. In many cases these are providing better results that direct mail, e-mail, or phone calls. I blogged a bit about Social Media and ERP last year here, but since then things have come quite a long way and adoption has become much more mainstream.
Of course Accpac 6.1 will integrate to this version as well as future versions. As Accpac continues its journey to the web that it started with version 6.0A, it will continue to integrate more and more into SageCRM. With both being Web products this becomes much easier in the past. Our technology stacks are aligning and our ability to seamlessly integrate becomes easier and easier. This breaks down the walls between ERP and CRM, allowing users in both worlds to get all the information they need for better decision making, whether its CRM users knowing of collections problems for customers from the back end accounting package, or A/R clerks being aware of communications that are going on between sales and customers they are collecting for.
As we move forwards we will be releasing many new “extras” similar to the “SageCRM for Twitter” extra mentioned above. Look to see some of these improving the ERP to CRM integration. The goal here is to get these into user’s hands sooner rather than having to wait for major releases of either the ERP or CRM product. If you are attending Sage Summit in a few weeks, look to see some previews of these extras that will be available shortly.
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