WHY AN OPEN-SOURCE CRM?

After providing more than 25,000 days of consultancy, the diligent team has learned a lot, a whole lot. Since 2009, we have been working with our clients to develop CRM strategies and implement the associated technologies. It was here that we first made contact with open-source software. diligent has since become the leader in the integration of open-source CRM systems in German-speaking Europe. And we are convinced of the open-source idea. Why?

Well, for starters a recent EU study (2017)2 describes open source software (OSS) as one of the most important technological trends in the software industry. Furthermore, Open source applications are regarded as a key innovation driver, example are provided by Firefox, Linux, Android, WordPress, Apache, Hadoop and Eclipse.
Thanks to the use of OSS, it is considered that European companies will be able to save up to 114 billion of Euro per year. However, when taking into account also indirect advantages, the savings could be as high as 342 billion of Euro per year.2 Based on such predictions, it is no wonder that the EU Commission is strongly suggesting Companies to use Open-Source Software, supporting their diffusion with the EU Free and Open Source Software Auditing Project (EU-FOSSA).3

Furthermore, we have four additional reasons that strongly support switching to Open Source.

Open-source CRM lets you keep your independence

Users of open-source CRM are not tied down to a particular provider. This makes them independent of mandatory updates, maintenance and support contracts, and subscriptions. Users aren’t locked in by vendors, tricks designed to increase customer loyalty by making it very expensive or a major hassle to migrate to other providers. By using open-source software, switching to other products or services is always possible without any of these problems. Open-source users also drive innovations: features are not added to open-source software for marketing reasons, but only if there is a concrete need. Users decide for themselves what they need and retain the flexibility to implement these changes if and when they wish.

Open-source CRM lets you be flexible

As the name suggests, the source code for open-source CRM is open and transparent. This makes things flexible: you can adapt and further develop the software to your individual needs and requirements. Further development is supported by modular design, open standards, and documented interfaces. This also makes it easy to integrate open-source software into other systems. In addition, the open-source CRM systems used by diligent are flexibly scalable and can therefore be used by companies of any size, from small, family-run companies to multinational corporations.

Open-source CRM is forward-looking and future-proof

Open-source software is successfully used in many places: Apache, Unix, Hadoop, Android, R, and SuiteCRM are just some examples. Open-source has long established itself at every level in the world of business. This is also due to its future-orientated development model: the development process of commercial providers is countered by the creativity of the large open-source community. With open-source solutions, active communities have often blazed the trails only followed later on by the established players. This is especially true for CRM solutions. The wisdom of the crowd means that development is usually faster and more widely based than with proprietary software. The community can also close security gaps much more quickly thanks to the open-source code. Open-source development is not only forward-looking, but also future-proof. Unlike commercial software, where support can be discontinued or their providers can be bought out, open-source software does not disappear, but is instead continually developed by the community, resulting in reliable, lasting, long-term support.

Open-source CRM is cost-efficient

Unlike commercial software, open-source CRM does not incur any licence fees or expenses for forced release changes that happen repeatedly. There are also no up-front costs for the initial procurement of the software or future updates. In addition, users receive the source code and thus the underlying knowledge base. The software can be used for as long as it remains useful and basic support from the community is often free of charge. There will, however, be costs for customising, maintenance, operation and optional premium support. Nevertheless, compared to proprietary CRM solutions, open-source CRM remains extremely cost-efficient.

 

SuiteCRM Online Demo

 

The advantages of open-source CRM lie initially in the open standards and freedom from the software providers. Open-source software protects against dependency, unwanted updates, price increases, and a lack of integration options. Above all, open-source CRM is, in our experience, as powerful as proprietary CRM. That’s why we are deeply convinced of open-source CRM.
says Dr Sebastian Ludorf, Senior Consultant at diligent technology & business consulting AG.

Open-source systems for successful customer management

Open-source means diversity. That’s why we not only offer you an open-source CRM system, but also weigh all of your requirements and help you to choose the best CRM system. We might even recommend commercial CRM systems, provided they meet your requirements!

The future of software development and provision lies in the field of open-source

Proprietary
CRM-SOFTWARE

Open-Source
CRM-SOFTWARE

Open-Source Code?

Open Standards, High Adaptability

Depending on the provider

Complete Independence / Flexibility

Free Community Support

Quality Assurance

Depending on the provider

Provided by the community,

Benefiting from the
“knowledge of many”

Further Development

Depending on the provider

Independent Further Development

Depending on the technical possibilities of the software

Within the community,

Independent of individuals

No Licence Costs

With open-source CRM solutions, you can significantly reduce your initial investment and running costs

Investment example for 30 users

Assumptions
Licensing Costs 1,650.41 € per user
Adjustment Costs 15 consultant man-days à € 1,000,-
Support/Maintenance € 7,59 per user/month
Operating Costs € 7,281.92 server licensing costs,
€ 1,500 € annual operating costs

On-premise, one-time licensing costs

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Total
Licensing Costs 49,512 € 49,512 €
Adjustment Costs 15,000 € 15,000 €
Support/Maintenance 2,732 € 2,732 € 2,732 € 2,732 € 2,732 € 13,660 €
Operating Costs 7,281 € 1,500 € 1,500 € 1,500 € 1,500 € 13,281 €
Total 74,525 € 4,232 € 4,232 € 4,232 € 4,232 € 91,453 €
Assumptions
Licensing Costs € 75,- per user/month
Adjustment Costs 15 consultant man-days à € 1,000,-
Support/Maintenance included in the cloud offering
Operating Costs included in the cloud offering

Cloud-based, annual licensing costs

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Total
Licensing Costs 27,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 135,000 €
Adjustment Costs 15.000 € 15,000 €
Support/Maintenance
Operating Costs
Total 42,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 27,000 € 150,000 €
Assumptions
Licensing Costs no licensing costs, open source
Adjustment Costs 15 consultant man-days à € 1,000,-
Support/Maintenance free community support,
premium support with SLA
(€ 2,700,- per year)
Operating Costs no licensing costs for server,
€ 1,200 € annual operating costs

Free open source solution (e.g. SuiteCRM)

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Total
Licensing Costs
Adjustment Costs 15,000 € 15.000 €
Support/Maintenance
Operating Costs 0 €
2,700 €
0 €
2,700 €
0 €
2,700 €
0 €
2,700 €
0 €
2,700 €
0 €
13,500 €
Total 16,200 € /
18,900 €
1.200 € /
3,900 €
1.200 € /
3,900 €
1.200 € /
3,900 €
1.200 € /
3,900 €
21,000 € /
34,500 €

Continue discovering the world’s leading open source CRM system

 

Open-source CRM systems: our services

1See the SwissICT/Swiss Open Systems User Group (2015): Open Source Studie, Schwizerland 2015.

2 See the European Union (2017): The Economic and Social Impact of Software & Services on Competitiveness and Innovation (SMART 2015/0015).

3 For more information on the EU-FOSSA, see the following link.

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