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Independent Sage CRM Review

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Sage CRM Marketplace

CRM software ecosystems and online marketplaces of integrated third party products offer customers ready-made business software applications without the messy and costly custom system integration requirements. The Sage Partner Solution Source is an online marketplace of partner solutions and third party products for all of Sage's business software products. At the time of this CRM review, there were 53 third party solutions available for SageCRM and 28 available for SalesLogix. Each Sage third party solution offers customer reviews and ratings. A bit more unusual among CRM directories, but extremely welcome information, is the Sage certification designation. Sage designates the third party products as Certified (which is tested and verified by Sage and VeriTest labs), Endorsed (has completed additional QA testing) and Sage (complimentary products developed by Sage).

There is also a dedicated Sage CRM Community which includes a directory of integrated third party applications as well as news and announcements, customer forums, partner forums and community ideation projects. This CRM community is a good example of online social collaboration with customers and the extended community.

The Sage community ecosystem most closely approximates the AppExchange from Salesforce but unlike the AppExchange, the Sage ecosystem is open to non-technical service providers.

Hosting and Data Center Delivery

Sage CRM and SalesLogix are available in either an on-demand or on-premise delivery model. While Sage CRM uses the same code set for both on-demand and on-premise, the feature sets and capabilities differ between the two delivery models with the on-premise CRM software possessing far more features than the on-demand CRM version.

SageCRM.com is hosted in Dublin Ireland and maintains a hot site in Atlanta. The company does not provide a public or private performance visibility website which displays hosted system performance, uptime metrics, downtime occurrences and the like. The SageCRM.com data center operation maintains a SAS 70 Type II attestation and etrust privacy certification.

In a cloud deployment, both the Sage CRM On-Demand Standard and Advanced editions allow a complete database download. This is useful for offline data analysis or disaster recovery and is a step up as compared to many SaaS CRM systems which limit the data that can be downloaded by customers and limit the download files to simple CSV extracts. New versions and software upgrades are delivered to multi-tenant customers in mass, although larger customers can negotiate isolated instances for a more controlled upgrade process.

SalesLogix utilizes Amazon's EC2 public cloud hosting environment. SalesLogix use of Amazon EC2 provides the ability to place instances in different regional or global locations. Amazon EC2 hosting is currently available in five regions: US East (Northern Virginia), US West (Northern California), EU (Ireland), Asia Pacific (Singapore), and Asia Pacific Japan (Tokyo). However, at this time the only SalesLogix data center location outside the US is the UK facility.

The SalesLogix single-tenant architecture essentially leads to each customer getting a private cloud instance provisioned on the Amazon network. This autonomy permits software upgrades to be scheduled and deployed by individual customers—thereby enhancing flexibility but also increasing software maintenance costs and potentially slowing the adoption of new software innovation. SalesLogix allocates 100 GB of storage for every 50 users.

The SalesLogix Service Level Agreement (SLA) basically extends the Amazon EC2 service level commitment of 99.95% guaranteed uptime availability. Sage stands behind the financial credits if necessary, which in fact was the case May 2011 when Amazon incurred its well cited downtime, after which Sage proactively issued credits to their SalesLogix customers.

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