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SugarCRM vs. Microsoft Dynamics CRM: Which On-Premise Solution Provides The Most Value?

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Lately, I have been seeing more and more of SugarCRM in the marketplace.  It makes sense.  After all, when money is tight, many organizations look for the lowest upfront cost instead of the product with the greatest long-term ROI.  It’s true that SugarCRM Professional and Enterprise have one of the lowest per user licenses costs of any on-premise CRM software solution for mid-market businesses, including Microsoft Dynamics CRM

I took a look at Microsoft Dynamics CRM and SugarCRM in a side-by-side feature comparison produced by Focus Research and found the two products to be remarkably similar.

Sales Force Automation:  Both products have comparable sales tracking, forecasting, analytics, and opportunity management tools.  However, there are a few distinct differences:

  • SugarCRM “facilitates the creation of presentations and proposals for customers,” a feature which Microsoft Dynamics CRM does not approach.  However, since Dynamics CRM is a Microsoft product and works like and with other Microsoft products, Dynamics CRM users are able to create presentations in Office programs, save them to a document library in CRM or create proposal templates that can be populated and distributed through Dynamics CRM.  Therefore, the same result can be achieved using either product.

Divisions Inc. is using Microsoft Dynamics CRM to streamline their proposal process:

“Before, the process involved in generating each new proposal and subsequent contract consumed an hour and a half of employee time. Now it takes 10 minutes. We are literally saving thousands of hours annually.” - Kyle Murray, CIO

  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides offline and mobile-device support which SugarCRM does not.  With all of the smart-phones in use by sales personnel, this a great advantage for Microsoft Dynamics CRM users to have all of their CRM data in the palms of their hands at any moment. 

Service and Support:  Although they operate differently, the support and service feature sets for Microsoft Dynamics CRM and SugarCRM are almost identical. 

Marketing:  Both solutions contain similar lead and campaign management tools. 

  • SugarCRM contains the ability to create web form pages to capture leads, a capability that Microsoft does not rival “out-of-the-box” but can be customized to accomplish. 
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM’s marketing automation is workflow-driven, thereby aiding the collaboration between the marketing and sales departments.  

So, with such similar features, why would any organization choose to pay more for Microsoft Dynamics CRM over SugarCRM? 

The fact that Microsoft Dynamics CRM is built on a .NET framework and operates on the Microsoft platform means that it not only seamlessly integrates with finance, business management, or ERP software solutions but also with company websites and more! 

Divisions Inc. has found the value in efficiency gains through integration that is only possible with a Microsoft Dynamics product:

“To say Dynamics CRM has paid for itself is an understatement.  It has changed the way we do business. We’ve eliminated redundancy and the risk of errors and by doing so have enabled our employees to work more efficiently and effectively.” – Kyle Murray, CIO

Divisions Inc. is also saving time and money by automating processes in Microsoft Dynamics CRM and integrating their data with their Microsoft Dynamics GP ERP system:

“CRM initiates a workflow that routes the proposals to our contracts department for approval. Once approved, it is added as a contract in Dynamics GP…The efficiency gains are enormous.” – Kyle Murray, CIO

The fact that you can purchase SugarCRM with the push of a button from their website might seem appealing, but when the transaction is complete, the responsibility falls on you to implement the solution and get your people up and running on it.  Microsoft Dynamics CRM is sold, implemented, supported, and enhanced by Microsoft partners, like Socius. 

“Socius is a valuable resource to us. We are savvy users and are able to do much of the customization ourselves, but it is still great to have their expertise when we need it. They are our go-to firm.” – Kyle Murray, CIO, Divisions Inc.

Read more about how Microsoft Dynamics CRM is helping Divisions Inc. do business more efficiently and effectively.

By Socius, an Ohio Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner

7 Responses to “SugarCRM vs. Microsoft Dynamics CRM: Which On-Premise Solution Provides The Most Value?”

  1. CRM says:

    CRM is essential for growing businesses, but it is important to carefully select your CRM partner. This blog article “Don’t Make a CRM Buying Mistake : 7 Points to Consider Before Selecting Your CRM Solution” has advice on selecting a CRM solution. » Commence CRM Blog
    http://www.commence.com/blog/index.php/2010/01/20/dont-make-a-crm-buying-mistake-7-points-to-consider-before-selecting-your-crm-solution/

  2. A company proposal is created to reflect the professionalism of your organisation and is there to persuade a buyer that your goods or services are valuable to them. Together with any other collateral it’s the proposition which you are giving towards the customer and what will hopefully win much more function for that business.

  3. Jon Berbaum says:

    Julie,

    Thanks for the article. CRMs can be difficult to choose, so comparisons are helpful. I work for a SugarCRM partner and know that platform, so I can provide some knowledge from that side of the table.

    SugarCRM does provide mobile web pages for use on any smart phone, it does have a workflow automation engine, and Sugar does have a thriving partner network, just like Microsoft, to help companies successfully implement their CRM.

    I hope that’s helpful in better lining up the solutions for companies to make CRM decisions. Thanks.

  4. As a CRM evangelist and blogger myself, I wanted to reach out regarding some of the information here in this post. Now, of course I am biased being a SugarCRM employee, but I also feel that it is my job to clarify our product features and business model when I honestly feel we are misrepresented.

    I think you were pretty accurate on the product features side, save for one thing: SugarCRM’s commercial editions (Professional and Enterprise) do in fact offer highly robust mobile tools – all fully customizable, as well as an offline client. And, these features are provided at no extra charge, unlike some other CRM providers like Salesforce.com for example that has been known to charge up to an additional $50 per user per month for mobile access. That is more than our base cost for our entire product! (In truth, I admit I am not totally aware of MS Dynamic’s CRM mobile pricing – if it is not an included feature.)

    Again, product aside, my real issue was with the depiction of SugarCRM as a CRM product that users simply by “with the push of a button.” This is simply not true. SugarCRM has a dedicated internal sales team that helps identify a prospect’s CRM needs and shape their deployment map for them as best they can – then all accounts are given a “customer advocate” that aids their successful roll out of the Sugar product.

    As a CRM provider, we understand the importance of adoption and proper installation to best align your CRM software with your people and processes. We would never simply leave our customers alone on an island – so to speak – to figure it out for themselves.

    To be fair, I realize a lot of outside observers find some confusion between our free and open source Community Edition and our paid editions. While we do not “support” the free editions, even those users can access a wide mosaic of support options – including our user and developer forums, our open documentation, wikis, etc. In short, we are measured by our users’ success or failure – and most of our resources are dedicated towards insuring success.

    Additionally, you note the importance of having a trusted partner helping businesses get off on the right foot. At SugarCRM, we agree that in many cases, a third party with domain or product expertise can speed your time to productivity and ROI. That is why SugarCRM has built a strong partnership of nearly 300 VARS and resellers – all dedicated to insuring our users’ deployments go smoothly and provide value into the organization.

    I think that we can all agree that regardless of the product or technology, CRM is about people and process first – the software is secondary. And I believe that whether you are a VAR partner like yourself selling one product, or a partner like Levementum selling SugarCRM – your business is dependent on insuring customer success. This is something I know we can all agree upon.

  5. I am curious, is this really a blog, or a marketing pitch? I truly like objective analysis and objective approaches, which guide people. This sounds less than objective.

    Mitch

  6. ellathinks says:

    That is a great post. Having to present the advantage of both matters.Sales force automation like the SugarCRM is capable of providing presentations and proposals to customers unlike the Microsoft Dynamic CRM.

  7. Julie,

    As a CRM evangelist and blogger myself, I wanted to reach out regarding some of the information here in this post. Now, of course I am biased being a SugarCRM employee, but I also feel that it is my job to clarify our product features and business model when I honestly feel we are misrepresented.

    I think you were pretty accurate on the product features side, save for one thing: SugarCRM’s commercial editions (Professional and Enterprise) do in fact offer highly robust mobile tools – all fully customizable, as well as an offline client. And, these features are provided at no extra charge, unlike some other CRM providers like Salesforce.com for example that has been known to charge up to an additional $50 per user per month for mobile access. That is more than our base cost for our entire product! (In truth, I admit I am not totally aware of MS Dynamic’s CRM mobile pricing – if it is not an included feature.)

    Again, product aside, my real issue was with the depiction of SugarCRM as a CRM product that users simply by “with the push of a button.” This is simply not true. SugarCRM has a dedicated internal sales team that helps identify a prospect’s CRM needs and shape their deployment map for them as best they can – then all accounts are given a “customer advocate” that aids their successful roll out of the Sugar product.

    As a CRM provider, we understand the importance of adoption and proper installation to best align your CRM software with your people and processes. We would never simply leave our customers alone on an island – so to speak – to figure it out for themselves.

    To be fair, I realize a lot of outside observers find some confusion between our free and open source Community Edition and our paid editions. While we do not “support” the free editions, even those users can access a wide mosaic of support options – including our user and developer forums, our open documentation, wikis, etc. In short, we are measured by our users’ success or failure – and most of our resources are dedicated towards insuring success.

    Additionally, you note the importance of having a trusted partner helping businesses get off on the right foot. At SugarCRM, we agree that in many cases, a third party with domain or product expertise can speed your time to productivity and ROI. That is why SugarCRM has built a strong partnership of nearly 300 VARS and resellers – all dedicated to insuring our users’ deployments go smoothly and provide value into the organization.

    I think that we can all agree that regardless of the product or technology, CRM is about people and process first – the software is secondary. And I believe that whether you are a VAR partner like yourself selling one product, or a partner like Levementum selling SugarCRM – your business is dependent on insuring customer success. This is something I know we can all agree upon.

 

 
 
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