As we come to the close of 2018, I wanted to share just a few of my reflections on this year & give you an insight into the world of Sage CRM in 2019.
We continue to gain many new customers around the world each & every month, drawn to the highly featured & keenly priced offer that is Sage CRM. We have, of course, a significant advantage that is the “open door” to our very large accounting customer base globally. This allows our reseller partners working with Sage 50/100/200/300 product lines globally, to provoke conversations with their own customers - asking them how they find, acquire & serve their own customers and speak about how Sage CRM features help business of all sizes improve their efficiencies & productivity.
I hear from my global colleagues that CRM functionality is, more than ever, in demand - particularly with customers dealing with a need to improve data management, process automation & compliance events. The continued success of the Sage CRM proposition suggests to me that customers are recognising a need for ‘something CRM’ and, knowing it is available as part of their accounting package, are getting around to unwrapping it & putting it to use.
In 2018, we released three updates to the product with additions and/or improvements to the interface, interrogation and integration elements across the product. We also included new "consent management" features to deal with legislative demands from across the globe of tracking marketing consent. All these updates, in addition to the many hundreds of enhancements (fixes & minor updates), made for a busy year for our Dublin development team to satisfy demands from the market, while improving the product’s usability & deployment experience for employees, resellers & customers alike.
Our development colleagues in North America - our largest market - delivered a complete overhaul to the Sage 300 integration. Functionally similar to the older integration, the new component was a significant piece of work in replacing the underpinning technology and uses the new 300c cloud + CRM API services. Easier to deploy & support in production environments, I know it has been very well received by our customers & reseller partners alike.
Moving into 2019, we have just delivered the final round of 'roadmap readouts' with our key stakeholders globally. This completes a process that started with my "Commercial Ambition" paper (outlining the strategic rationale & commercial drivers) back in July & which formed the basis of the product roadmap for the next 3 years. Your local Sage office and/or partner can share the detail with you, should you like to know more.
My colleague, Jeff Richards, continues to do fine work in supporting our customer, partner, developer & internal ecosystems here on the Sage CRM Community. This should be the first place that you look for help around the features & environments for all supported versions of Sage CRM. This year has seen updated documentation plus a new Help Center that is fully responsive, allowing it to be viewed on laptops, tablets, and phones. Videos are also now embedded into the Help Center - you can play them without leaving the website – and there have been many, many new videos added in 2018. It is all part of our commitment to provide customers with an improved ownership experience. We know that this community is really working - with a substantial engagement on forums, blogs & eLearning areas of the community. This is an organic ‘groundswell’ of activity from a passionate and engaged membership of over 10,500 active members.
In closing, I say thank you for your business & committment to Sage CRM. I wish you & yours a restful holiday break wherever you are in the world and look forward to working with you in 2019 and beyond.