Siebel's new service will make CRM cheaper and widen choice for users in companies of all sizes, the suppliers behind the service claimed this week.
BT and Siebel are signing a deal to offer UK users the Siebel CRM Ondemand service. Under the agreement, users would pay BT £50 per user per month to access a hosted Siebel CRM system.
Steve Rogers, vice-president for Siebel in the UK, said users would have the choice of purchasing the new Ondemand hosted service or deploying Siebel though a traditional in-house CRM implementation.
Pierre Danon, chief executive officer at BT Retail, said CRM Ondemand would give large businesses the flexibility to change the number of users who access the CRM system. "We have seen a lot of interest from big business. Users can buy 10 seats, 20 seats and 100 seats. They can buy more or less seats."
But he said BT's strategy was to offer CRM Ondemand to SMEs, particularly for businesses that lack dedicated IT staff.
He said BT would provide UK users with enterprise applications via an ADSL connection into an Openworld portal. This currently provides anti-virus and anti-spamming software, web design tools and back-up for IT systems over the internet.
Danon told Computer Weekly that he plans to offer more products to SMEs through BT's Openworld business portal. He said that, to date, BT had sold 240,000 portals to UK businesses.
"In the past nine months I have evaluated how to provide software through Openworld. Siebel CRM Ondemand is the first application available," he said.
Between now and April 2004 Danon said BT would be adding further applications to the OpenWorld portal.
CRM programs for firms of all sizes
Siebel CRM Ondemand
- Cut-down version of Siebel available over the internet
- Available as a subscription service which costs £50 per user, per month from BT
- Integration and customisation using the Universal Application Framework can prove costly.
- Pioneer of internet CRM service
- Enterprise version priced at £73 per user, per month
- Requires Tibco, an expensive middleware tool, for integration
- Lacks full campaign management
- European version of Microsoft's CRM package
- Considered a "core" CRM product on which third-party developers will build CRM system
- Uses .net framework and Microsot Biztalk server
- Price not confirmed but low-cost purchasing plans will be available