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Daily Spin: Handicapping the On-Demand CRM Field

The Big Picture
Handicapping the On-Demand CRM Field

March is NCAA tournament month. Brackets. Upsets. Cinderella stories. The Final Four. So in honor of this month's games, let's take a moment today to handicap another hotly-contested arena -- the on-demand CRM market.

Today on NWC.com, we posted an exclusive review of SAP's debut on-demand CRM product. Reviewer Lori MacVittie gave SAP's initial offering solid marks in some areas (including sales data reporting), but noted the lack of some key features, such as robust data import. Late last year, NWC looked at the entire on-demand CRM market in a wide-ranging comparative review, choosing Sage Software's offering as our Editor's Choice winner.

Overall, we found on-demand CRM a solid alternative to client-server-based offerings. But choosing a hosted service isn't a no-brainer for IT. Can you trust a third-party with your crown jewel customer databases? Can you count on your service provider being around for the long term? Will your provider live up to its service-level agreements? Can the relative cookie-cutter approach of hosted CRM fit your unique business processes?

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