CRM Reviews: Is Sugar CRM Worth Your Time?

SugarCRM is the world’s leading provider of open source CRM software, as top CRM reviews highlight.  Its free version was downloaded more than 200,000 times in the third quarter of 2010. But is this growth founded on quality?

CRM Reviews: What Does SugarCRM Offer?

SugarCRM is the leading provider of commercial open source CRM software and it is primarily for companies needing sales force automation. In its latest edition, examined in CRM reviews,  SugarCRM added calculated and hidden fields, mobile integration, and enhanced searching. The search function is an improvement because it can use dates and number ranges in data-range searches. There is also a global search function that allows you to search the entire database and easily configure which modules you are allowed to search from. Dashboards have been enhanced as well with the addition of “dashlets”; these can be found in My Quotes and My Documents.

SugarCRM Features Strong in CRM Reviews

Sugar has also partnered with InsideView which brings your social profile data directly into Sugar. Google news will also stream directly into SugarCRM. SugarCRM is also embracing HTML5 or Flash, so iPad and iPhone users can run the software. It also comes in editions including Professional, Enterprise, Corporate, and Ultimate with prices ranging from $360 to $1,200 per year. Some users say it is well supported, flexible to customize, and easy to set up. It has plug-ins for Microsoft Office, and tools for sales, marketing, support and internal collaboration. Users can deploy SugarCRM in Cloud form, or on-premise.

CRM Reviews: Where is SugarCRM Falling Short?

The weakness of SugarCRM, as highlighted in CRM reviews, is that it is an open source solution with poor reporting. The pipelines, forecasts and the overall reporting offered in SugarCRM are not optimal. A limited number of system administration tools and its ease of use are also limiting factors. Mid to large-sized companies will not find the software functionality or feature sets to their liking as they are more suited for smaller businesses. SugarCRM’s use of PHP as a development platform speeds its CRM solution development, but limits its scalability. While most CRM vendors have avoided the multi-instance structure in their deployment models, SugarCRM has embraced it, which might not be a drawback for smaller companies, but is a turn-off to mid-sized and larger businesses.

Strength of SugarCRM Questioned in CRM Reviews

SugarCRM is offered as an on-premise install as an appliance that’s easily integrated into your existing IT structure. It’s offered as a free, open-source format in its Community Edition, which offers limited value to users serious about getting benefits out of CRM. SugarCRM falls short in advanced functionality, such as including inventory of products or multiple-period sale occurrences. Overall, the user interface, though uncluttered and simple, doesn’t provide an inviting user experience. SugarCRM users have complained that they couldn’t install it on their server, ran into frequent deployment errors and many PHP warnings.

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