The CRM Systems: SAP and Bitrix24
The process of building the relationships with the clients increasingly takes a more and more significant place in the business development. The quality of customer service is currently the foremost factor influencing the success of every organization. The high level of service leads to the increased customers’ loyalty and creates a favorable image of the organization, which results in the growth of its financial indicators. All this contributed to the emergence of a number of software products, such as the CRM-systems, which facilitate the work on this process. Thus, it is noteworthy to analyze the CRM-systems’ operation and compare the two of them to determine the feasibility of their use.
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Definition of CRM Functions within Bitrix24
The function of saving incoming, outgoing and internal information about the work with the clients is one of the most important functions of the Bitrix24 CRM. The system allows saving all incoming information from the phones or e-mails. If the system has access to the telephone number or e-mail, it will attach the record of the event and its content to the corresponding Contact/Company card. If this information is unknown for the system, the user creates the lead and associates the events with it. Thus, no information can disappear or be left behind. Evidently, there is a risk of the bad information processing by the person in charge; however, the information will never vanish from the system, which will signal about its presence.
In Bitrix24, there is the function of recording the managers’ telephone conversations due to the installation of IP-telephony and/or other relevant programs for corporate mobile smartphones. This function is useful for both the manager and the leader to assess the quality of the managers’ telephone conversations and their improvement. It is also useful during some proceedings with the customers, when one is able to listen to the conversations for quicker conflict resolution.
The other CRM function available in Bitrix24 is the analysis of the customer base with the usage of filters and unloading of the segments for the operation. The system has almost unlimited possibilities for the setting up and development of the analytical reporting. For any available CRM basis in the Bitrix24 (the field of the customer/company/trade card), one can apply the filter to create the report. Any foremost features, which are not available in the basic setting, can be added by the system user to the card at any time during the system operation.
There is a wide enough base report list in the system, which can be supplemented with the individually designed reports with the help of the Report Designer. By means of filters, one can select a certain segment of the client base and export data to the external file (if the user has the corresponding access) to use them for the needed processing (mailings, calls, etc.).
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Bitrix24 possesses the information about the operating activities of the managers (what calls are performed, their commercial offers, etc.). Besides, this system includes the function of logging all the changes. Bitrix24 CRM logs all actions of its participants even if it is just opening and viewing the card or document. It is impossible to conceal any actions in it. This is important because mostly the managers can observe the entire customer base, making changes in it and so on. Otherwise, it is difficult to ensure the coordinated work with the clients and the managers’ interchangeability. In this case, one should be able to mention the changes in the cards during any period and monitor the “unhealthy” activity of the managers. The access rights settings in Bitrix24 CRM are an extremely flexible tool used for setting individual access rights for each participant.
The other function of the Bitrix24 CRM is the automation of the business processes, which allows to clearly direct the work of managers in accordance with the approved scenario of the customer support (when to call, what to do, how to control, what information to insert in the cards, etc.). Largely, the automation of the business processes ensures the compliance with the applicable company rules and standardization of the service quality because all managers have to operate in accordance with the business process, and the safety of the customer base.
Importance of CRM
CRM is the business strategy of the customer attraction and management, which is aimed at optimizing of their value in the long run. The CRM requires customer-oriented philosophy and culture of the company, directed on the efficiency of the marketing, sales and customer service. CRM-applications enable effective customer relationship management, which can be provided in case the company has the right objectives, strategy and culture. The CRM is a management approach or a model, which puts the customer into the center of the business processes and the company’s working methods. The CRM provides the most advanced technologies, combined with strategic planning and marketing methods, as well as organizational and technical tools. If the company’s customer base is wide, it is difficult to manage the relationships with the customers without the powerful software and servers. Therefore, the companies implement the specific software and that is the reason why the CRM systems are so important.
What Companies/Why Can Benefit from Bitrix24
Any CRM-systems, including Bitrix24 are required for the business, which works directly with the customers and is committed to the expansion of the customer base. For instance, if the incoming calls or requests, directed towards the attraction of new customers, are important for the business or if the business makes some efforts to obtain and retain the new customers, the CRM-system would be relevant. For example, the online stores, the wholesale companies or the beauty salons cannot operate effectively without the careful attention to the incoming requests and phone calls. Indeed, in each of these types of businesses, it is important for all orders to be carried out, for the buyers of goods and services to be satisfied, and for the customer loyalty to be increased. On the other hand, if the business is not interested in the increase of the number of customers at the current stage, or if the loyalty of the regular customers is based on the long-term contracts and the company establishes all contracts with the new customers during the personal meetings, Bitrix24 will not be beneficial.
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Thus, the retail store will never use the Bitrix24 CRM-system in its operations, because in this case the customer contacts cannot be fixed (Ali?, 2015). In this case, the customer loyalty is based on the product and service quality, i.e. the personal contact with the seller. Bitrix24 CRM will never be useful in the cases, when the company has been involved in the long-term contracts for the supply of goods to the network supplier shops, when there are barely enough capacities to fulfill the orders of the trading network and everything suits for both participants of the trade relations. However, if the business keeps developing, if it invests in the advertising, makes effort to attract and retain customers, the Bitrix24 CRM will be an excellent assistant in its operations.
Bitrix24 Features and Functions>/h3>
In Bitrix24, there is a working area of the CRM. It contains the following features: Leads, Contacts/Companies and the Potential Deals. The Lead is a potential customer. In this case, there is reflected a human contact, which is not yet the company’s customer, but has already shown some interest and left his/her contact details. One collects the Leads from the Landing Page, the advertisements, online stores, and via the phone. Contacts and Companies are the formed Leads, which have been adopted for the work. One can create the Potential Deals in the system based on the Lead with the help of the specific contact or company.
During the creation of these forms, one can observe the additional fields for fixing the addresses, additional phones, or any other data. During this process, one should choose the features, which are not needed in the CRM system: the link to the information blocks section and the link to the information block elements. These features are needed during the processing with the help of the information portal of Bitrix24, but not the CRM system (Bitrix, n.d.).
The template of the Lead creation and its subsequent conversion is simple and intuitively straightforward; however, the place at the same time is not used sparingly, and the interface looks unbalanced. Externally, the Lead, Contact and Company forms are extremely simple and clear. Moreover, they appear to be identical. Their difference lies in the title and their specifics. Thus, the Lead is the contact of a person or organization that expressed the interest in the company’s products. The Contact is a person, with whom the sales department is already working: negotiating, solving some organizational issues, etc. The Company is in fact the same contact, but at the level of the organization (legal entity). Thus, the Contact is always the human, and the Company is an organization, which the given contact or multiple contacts represent. Thus, the negotiation, communication, and discussion of all the issues are carried out by the managers with the particular contact, and the conclusion of a treaty, billing, shipment and sale clearance are conducted with the company.
The Potential Deal template in the CRM system is convenient and understandable for the users. After the user creates the deal, in addition to any custom fields, one can add the goods directly into the document. This opportunity is not provided in each CRM system. In the Bitrix24, one can create the Deal and fix, what products have been proposed and at what price, during the communication with the company. It is important not to confuse the Deal and Invoices. Invoices are issued separately, and the managers are able to form them based on the Deal not only manually, but also automatically. In the Deal template, one can record all the arrangements concerning the products, volumes, and prices beforehand.
In addition to the deals, invoices, leads, contacts and companies in the Bitrix24 CRM, there are the proposals. This document is a form of a commercial offer, where one can also list all the products and prices. Thus, the proposal largely duplicates the invoices and deals. There are some differences (mainly in the header and the printed form of the document), but the rest of the document looks exactly the same way as the deal or the invoice. The Reports are an important part of any CRM-system. Successful sales largely depend on the timely control of the managers, which is usually carried out on the basis of reports.
In the Bitrix24 CRM, the reports are one of the weakest points. The list of the predefined reports is extremely small, while most of them include the insufficient information. There is also a report designer, which is designed to create the custom reporting options, but there are the limits in terms of the features. Due to the limited list of settings, the new report largely duplicates the standard ones, while the possibility to introduce the serious analytics within the Bitrix24 CRM is not provided.
In the system, there is the Sales Funnel. It is a record, which is submitted separately even in the system menu, as it is mostly demanded in the current work of any sales department. The Sales Funnel is a kind of a diagram, which shows the dynamics and percentage of the transactions by status: from those that are at the final stage to those that are still at the initial one. The designed report is accurate, and informative; however, there is the lack of flexibility of the settings of this report.
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The SAP Company Overview
SAP is one of the world’s largest producers of the enterprise management systems. Its direct competitor is Oracle (Mucic, 2015). The company was founded in Germany in 1976. Nowadays, its headquarters are located in Walldorf. SAP develops the automated logistics, finance, production, human resources, and inventory management systems. In addition to the systems development, the company is engaged in the implementation of its own products and their adaptation to the needs of customers. At the beginning of 2015, 75 thousand of SAP employees in 130 offices all around the world maintained about 300 thousand customers. The annual turnover of the company is over 17 billion euros (Mucic, 2015).
The SAP CRM System Overview
The SAP CRM system is a solution, which allows combining the employees, partners, processes and technologies in a full closed cycle of the interaction with the clients (SAP AG, 2009). It provides the tools used for checking of the resources real-time availability, contract management, and the billing management. With the help of it, one can achieve a high level of the transparency of orders and tracking of their status. The solution offers functions and opportunities for planning the marketing activities, managing the marketing campaigns, implementation of the telemarketing, generation of the new sales opportunities and customer segmentation (SAP AG, 2009).
The Comparison of the Bitrix24 and SAP CRM Systems
Pricing and Terms
The cost per one workstation with the SAP CRM is equal to more than $ 1000, and in case of the Bitrix24 CRM, the costs are equal to 100-250 $ for one installed system application. Due to the high prices, the SAP CRM is suitable for the medium-sized companies. Bitrix24 is free for small organizations (up to 12 people), but the high price for the medium-sized businesses makes it not so popular for such enterprises (“Cloud and self-hosted Bitrix24 at a glance,” 2015).
Reviewers’ Role and Experience
SAP CRM is commonly used in the large companies that have a great range of products because it allows the organization to create a single information space for all the products, prices and services (FinancesOnline, n.d.). Among the users of the Bitrix24 CRM, the majority are the small companies, as well as the single entrepreneurs, because one can manage orders even with the use of a mobile phone. The system allows creating a kind of corporate social network, where the communication and discussion of projects by all employees is possible. The Bitrix24 client experience makes 96% and the SAP experience is 95% (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
In both systems, the sequence of sales is the following. First, the customer makes a request to make a purchase (FinancesOnline, n.d.). These requests, as well as the contact details of the potential customer are manually recorded and the notification is sent to the manager (through the system and/or via e-mail). By forming a potential deal on the basis of which it is possible to form an invoice (manually or with the use of a template), the manager can submit the commercial offer. After receiving the consent of the client, or in the course of the sale or signing the agreement, the manager creates the contact. For this contact, he/she releases the sale, and carries out the shipment and payment. After that, he/she closes the deal.
SAP CRM has special regional, electronic sales units and the one used for the creation and management of the sales outlets and online shops and sites. The Bitrix24 CRM has the ability to integrate an online store into the site (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
Customer Service Automation/ Customer Support
The SAP CRM has a special unit of the service and customer support known as SAP CRM Customer Service and Support, which meets customer needs at any point in the cycle of the interaction with the client: from the emergence of a new customer in the database and multi-channel sales order to the product processing and providing the additional services to the client. The Bitrix24 CRM offers a full-featured automated access to its clients’ orders and accounts, and ensures the provision of additional services and warranty (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
SAP CRM can be integrated with Avaya, Cisco, Oktel, Asterisk and other telephony, produce a newsletter and generate the reports by e-mail. Bitrix24 CRM integrates with Asterisk and IP telephony, and can also interact with the social networks (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
Call Center/Contact Center
SAP CRM Module – Customer Interaction Center has the functions of the call center, service center, the claims agent, warranty and post warranty service. Bitrix24 functions include the call center and video conferencing service for the customer interaction (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
Help Desk Reporting and Analytics
Bitrix24 has the HelpDesk support function without the analytical reports. SAP CRM has the HelpDesk support function with the analytical reports (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
Reporting and Analytics
Bitrix24 has the Intranet analytics function and the Reporting Tools. The SAP CRM provides the multilevel access of the staff to the market information, analytics, applications, etc (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
Mobile and Social
The functionality of SAP CRM Interaction Center allows interacting with the customers regardless the type of contact – via phone, fax, e-mail or via the Internet. One can use the SAP CRM solution on the mobile communication devices, for instance, the laptops and mobile phones. The solution ensures the integrity of the information in any data section (FinancesOnline, n.d.). Bitrix24 allows interacting with the customers via telephone, e-mail or through the social networks. There is a mobile application for the mobile phones with the Android iOS (FinancesOnline, n.d.).
CRM is the business strategy of the customer attraction and management, which aims at optimizing their value in the long run. The CRM is a management approach, or a model, which puts the customer in the center of the business processes and the company’s operational methods. The CRM provides the most advanced technologies, combined with strategic planning, marketing methods, organizational and technical tools.
There are 4 main functions of the CRM, integrated in the Bitrix24: saving of the incoming, outgoing and internal information about the work with the clients; the analysis of the customer base with the use of filters and unloading the segments for the operation; the wide enough base report list in the system, which can be supplemented with the individually designed report with help of the Report Designer; automation of the business processes, which allows clearly directing the work of managers in accordance with the approved scenario of the customer support.
The SAP CRM solution offers the functions and opportunities for planning the marketing activities, managing the marketing campaigns, the implementation of the telemarketing, generation of the new sales opportunities and customer segmentation.
The capacities of Bitrix24 and SAP CRM systems are almost equal; however, due to the pricing policy the first one is more popular among the small and large companies, while the second one’s users are mostly comprised of the middle-range enterprises.