Microsoft has released free software to allow salespeople to access customer information platforms from Siebel via the Outlook e-mail program.
The Project Elixir software was first floated by Microsoft a year ago, and it has now released sample code for the solution via the Microsoft Developer Network website.
The idea is to allow companies to get the best out of web tools already integrated into the Office collaboration suite, which include Outlook.
A key component of Elixir is the Customer Explorer application, which is already used by thousands of Microsoft sales staff to access sales information from the company’s Siebel system, using their Outlook e-mail clients.
Elixir works only with Office 2003, so the move by Microsoft to release a free sales tool is part of its attempt to get companies to upgrade from earlier versions of Office.
Microsoft and SAP have also recently released a test version of the Mendocino application, which allows users to integrate Outlook closely with SAP’s business productivity software.