CRM Review: Tall Emu CRM
Tall Emu CRM (TECRM) is a refreshingly new and fully customisable database system. TECRM is an Australian product developed using current technologies and uses SQL Server 2008 as its database. It is an affordable system with comparable capabilities to enterprise-class solutions. Many of these capabilities are uniquely engineered in TECRM.
Tall Emu CRM is a powerful reconfigurable database with CRM functionality. It includes features that would normally only be available through either custom made solutions or ultra-high priced CRM/ERP software. TECRM is easy to tailor and mould into the way you work.
Tall Emu CRM has the capabilities you would expect in a normal CRM such as a single view of information (360 view), recording of interactions with contacts and the ability to categorise and retrieve information.
But TECRM differentiates itself from a normal CRM by including capabilities beyond expectation of a normal CRM system. TECRM is for companies who are seeking a business system to solve the commonly-encountered sharing of information problem, and those seeking ways to incorporate other aspects of their business into one system.
Instead of buying yet another 3rd party software tool to perform a business function, build it into TECRM and use a single software tool for the majority of your business functions.
TECRM is ideal where CRM functionality is a necessity, but where an element of automation is also required. It can however be used as an out-of-box CRM system without any modifications whatsoever, with a level of comfort knowing that if any adjustments were required, that they could be done. The other aspects where TECRM excels is where a business requires repetitive actions to be performed in a pre-defined sequence, TECRM can leverage its Workflow engine and deliver substantial economic savings in both time and human resources.
Included in TECRM is the Studio design editor designed for both simple and complex database modifications. The Studio is suited to organisations that need all the benefits of a CRM system, but also need customisations to the database to enhance their business processes. The Studio editor is simple enough that any User with permission can easily re-position a field, resize a field or simply remove a field from a form. Yet the Studio editor is powerful enough to add a new “table” to the database and immediately add a relationship to an existing Data Source. Pre-built elements such as a grid can be dropped into the form to display information. The simplicity and the ease of deployment positions TECRM very closely to a rapid database development environment, but with the benefit of a base-line suite of CRM functions.
TECRM presents to the User a familiar ribbon and grid system. It offers the end-users something special. Each User can configure their own grids the way they need (using a familiar Field Chooser), Sales people with benefit from a single environment to manage their sales process from the initial phone call right through to creating an invoice which can flow directly into the accounting database, and the Marketing Department will revel in its ability to easily communicate through dual merged email messages. Pre-designed templates can include pre-attached electronic brochures or any other electronic file.
Each communication event is recorded in TECRM and provides visibility of those interactions to all other staff members.
The Marketing Module introduces a feature called Target Lists. Target Lists can either be Static or Dynamic. A Dynamic list is simply a pre-defined filter. When the list is added to the Marketing Campaign it automatically applies the pre-defined filter and adds all the Contacts that meet the criteria. This one simple feature allows the company to work with the CRM in their normal way yet allow the Marketing Department to dynamically extract Contacts which meet their targeted marketing criteria. For example, a dynamic list can use a filter that extracts “all Contacts who purchased an item from Product Category “Spare Parts” in the last 30 days. The Target List would dynamically change every time it was used in a Marketing Campaign. This one feature saves marketing departments hours of time.
In addition to easily capturing communications TECRM includes a Quotation and Sales Order module. TECRM’s quotation module ties into the Products module. When a quotation is generated it can be attached to the Opportunity to which it refers.
Mulitple quotations can be attached to an Opportunity and Quotations can also be simply generated for a particular Company or Contact. TECRM supports the concept that a customer can be either a Company or a Contact (that is both B2B and B2C sales). If required to complete an internal business process, it’s possible to convert any successful quotations into a Sales Order, thus correctly identifying which quotations converted to a sale. The Sales Order document can then be used as a method to notify the Accounting department to raise an Invoice. Alternatively, the invoice can be raised in TECRM.
For companies who do not need a full accounting system, TECRM is capable of providing the basic accounting functions; raise an Invoice from a Sales Order, receive payments against an Invoice, issue a Credit Note, raise a Purchase Order and receive an Invoice from your supplier. The Product module, Quoting and Price Book system is considerably more powerful than most entry level accounting systems, and together with a moderate level of stock control, TECRM can fulfill many business needs out of the box.
Extracting data is another TECRM speciality. Using Advanced Filters any grid can include a custom filter, and be accessed by anyone. The Advanced Filter can include complex searches such as “Show all Companies with No Contacts”, and “Show all Contacts with no Calls in last 4 weeks”. Recently introduced in the ability to create an Advanced Filter to search for data in related areas, and to enter a parameter (see image to the left). For example an Advanced Filter can be added to the Contact’s menu where the User is prompted for the Company Type and Company State. The resultant grid will display all the Contacts that belong to a Company that meets that criteria.
Data import into TECRM is incredibly flexible in that multiple pieces of information can be simultaneously imported. For example, it’s possible to import from a single line in a spreadsheet the Company, Contact, Note, Product details and even a second and third note, provided they are all on the same row in the Excel sheet.
Currently (2013) TECRM can read/write to MYOB AccountRight v19, QuickBooks QBi and MYOB Exo. The recent release of version 2.8 now includes additional interface capabilities in all 3 interfaces. Please be aware that not all aspects of the Accounting database are accommodated in the interface. Specifications are available on request.