Home Business Software SugarCRM Hint pays for itself in two calls, research firm says

SugarCRM Hint pays for itself in two calls, research firm says

Last week, SugarCRM announced the release of Hint, to automatically populate contact information from online sources. Analysts say it pays for itself within two sales calls.

SugarCRM, the popular open source customer relationship management system, launched Hint, the first in a Relationship Intelligence product line, on 27 June.

The premise behind Hint is simple; enter some basic information about a contact such as their name, e-mail address and company, and Hint does all the work of searching online from a wide range of social sources to automatically populate your CRM database with rich information.

The product is available now for $US15/user/month for Sugar 7.8 or later.

Analysts from Nucleus Research say this is actually good value, and the product can pay for itself within two sales calls each month.

The analysts note that many vendors and ecosystem partners have invested in giving sales people access to social network, Web and other data on prospects. However, Sugar's approach allows data to be quickly pulled into the particular opportunity the salesperson is working on.

The value, therefore, they state is salespeople can spend less time on the administrative work of searching the Web for contact details, sorting through relevant information, check it for accuracy and data entering it. By removing this burden, the time to prepare for a call or meeting is shortened.

Hint users "have a more complete customer profile", Nucleus Research states.

To determine a specific dollar value, Nucleus Research surveyed salespeople and reviewed CRM case studies of sales force automation users from the past two years.

Time spent preparing for calls varied based on the salesperson's role, familiarity with the account, the complexity of the sale and many other factors, but on average Nucleus found a salesperson spends 17 minutes researching a lead to prepare for a call, without capabilities such as Hint, using their own online searching and capabilities.

The shortest time reported was five minutes, and the longest was 30 minutes.

Nucleus suggests the average cost of a salesperson is US$80,000, and thus every 17 minutes spent on research costs the business US$10.90 – time which could otherwise be spent making the next call, or other profitable work.

Consequently, Nucleus Research concludes if, by using Hint, a salesperson can eliminate or substantially reduce most of their preparation time on just two calls they have already covered the cost of the product.


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David M Williams

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David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. Within two years, he returned to his alma mater, the University of Newcastle, as a UNIX systems manager. This was a crucial time for UNIX at the University with the advent of the World-Wide-Web and the decline of VMS. David moved on to a brief stint in consulting, before returning to the University as IT Manager in 1998. In 2001, he joined an international software company as Asia-Pacific troubleshooter, specialising in AIX, HP/UX, Solaris and database systems. Settling down in Newcastle, David then found niche roles delivering hard-core tech to the recruitment industry and presently is the Chief Information Officer for a national resources company where he particularly specialises in mergers and acquisitions and enterprise applications.