Site icon Leonid Mamchenkov

Managing customer relations with open source

If you are looking for CRM software, make sure you try SugarCRM. It is professionally done piece of software which is available both as a commercial option and free software.

Free version has practically all the functionality of the commercial one. Commerical version features more reports and statistics, interface translated into a number of languages, and some more plugins and extensions. It is also officially supported by the company.

SugarCRM is written in PHP and works nicely with MySQL and Apache. PostgreSQL is not currently supported to the best of my knowledge. The interface is professionally designed and is also very flexible with themes and menu configurations. The installation is very straight forward and troubleless. I didn’t even have to read a line of documentation to do it. There is an option to fill the database with sample data, which makes understanding all the features so much faster.

SugarCRM supports management of contacts, appointments, phone calls, clients, bugs, notes, and a whole other bunch of stuff that is needed in the business world. Projects and leads are organized by the customer and makes it really easy to see what has been done with the client and up to what degree.

SugarCRM also features nice portal building utilities with RSS feed integration and website bookmarks, which can be either private or global. It comes with an excellent selection of about 400 feeds that one can start reading immediately. These can be, of course, edited and delete, while the new ones are easy to add.

One of the surprising features is the plugin for MS Outlook. It allows one to work with SugarCRm from the familiar interface of MS Outlook, as well synchronise meetings, contacts, emails, notes, and other stuff.

Overall, it looks like a very nice piece of software. I really wish there was support for PostgreSQL backend and LDAP authentication. Other than that everything looks perfect. I will probably be spending some time with this software in the near future. I’ll let you know if I will find any other strong good or bad sides to it.

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