Gartner recently published (July 17, 2013) its Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation (SFA). The Magic Quadrant is meant to support decision making for CIO’s and business analysts who maintain, or are looking to evaluate and procure, a CRM/SFA solution. The Magic Quadrant highlights the strengths and weaknesses (“Cautions”) each vendor provides with its CRM solution. Gartner typically highlights the functionality that provides innovation and the most value to the company and end users. We’ve reviewed Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for SFA and summarized the key reasons why Microsoft Dynamics CRM is positioned in the Leader Quadrant for sales force automation.
As you would expect, Microsoft Dynamics CRM gets high marks for having seamless integration into other Microsoft business productivity applications including SharePoint for collaboration and content management, Microsoft Lync for presence and instant messaging, Microsoft Visual Studio for extended customization and Microsoft Outlook for advanced email capabilities. In addition, Dynamics CRM utilizes SQL Server as its database and can provide advanced reporting through the use of SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS). This pre-built integration into other Microsoft technologies adds value by providing a low Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), reduces time spent on maintenance and technical issues.
Enhanced User Interface (UI)
Microsoft Dynamics CRM allows you to view everything you need in one spot – fast and fluid, and relevant to the work at hand. No pop-ups or flipping from one application to the next. In addition, you now have pre-defined or configurable processes – identifying the steps needed to complete the desired outcome. These process guided steps can be setup based on roles, or configured as needed with the process designer.
Gartner again points out that one of the main strengths of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is the partner ecosystem. This includes companies like Tridea Partners, who provide industry vertical expertise and proven implementation capabilities. There is also an extensive marketplace for CRM industry add-ons that offer more advanced vertical functionality.
With the target release of Dynamics CRM 2013 in Q4 of 2013, mobile sales users can access the application via Windows 8 tablets or iPad. This will also allow for offline viewing if Internet connection is lost or unavailable. Shortly after the initial release, Microsoft plans to complete the mobile story by providing touch-enabled usability on smartphones for Microsoft Windows 8, iPhones and Android.
Additional enhanced features not mentioned in the report include:
– Interactive Business Intelligence – you can click within charts to analyze sales data for quick insights.
– Social – your entire enterprise can collaborate using Yammer to comment on posts or begin conversations.
– Real-time (synchronous) workflows – real-time workflows are not queued and execute immediately on-demand or in response to message being processed by the execution pipeline.
– Business Rules – tailored, rule-driven business actions that can be applied to CRM forms.
This post was written by Brent Garduno, Sales Manager at Tridea Partners. Tridea Partners is a leading provider of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Dynamics AX, and Dynamics GP serving Southern California and the Salt Lake City regions. For more information on the functionality offered in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.