SAP takes on its CRM rivals

SAP is set to formally unveil mySAP CRM 3.0 offering, which the company describes as its first "mainstream release" in the CRM...

SAP is set to formally unveil mySAP CRM 3.0 offering, which the company describes as its first "mainstream release" in the CRM space.

MySAP CRM 3.0 can work alongside back office applications such as PeopleSoft's ERP or human resources software and with Oracle applications. Earlier releases of mySAP CRM had only linked to SAP back-office systems.

According to Michael Park, SAP vice-president of CRM solutions, the package is the company's "first real mainstream [product] where we're going head-to-head with the other vendors in the [CRM] space", such as Siebel and Oracle. The package, which began shipping on 31 August, offers functionality in the areas of operational, analytical and collaborative CRM, he said.

"We're incorporating analytical components as well as collaborative components to use the data to make better business decisions," Park added.

SAP has built the system to run on its own without being fully integrated with an ERP system, added Park.

According to Sharon Ward, an analyst at Hurwitz Group, SAP is offering the integration with back-end systems that the CRM market leader Siebel lacks.

MySAP CRM 3.0 also features more than 100 "business scenarios" - standard templates for specific interactions. These include customer-order capture, integrated advanced planning and optimisation and service requisition.

Version 3.0 enables users to measure profitability on a customer-by-customer basis. Featuring an online analytical processing engine, the product also incorporates third-party data into analyses. An enhanced call-centre function provides customer-specific knowledge to call-centre agents.

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