SugarCRM is beefing up its cloud customer relationship management platform with new features designed to make it easier for salespeople to find leads and be better prepared for sales calls and meetings.
The company has also released a mobile SDK that lets customers do the same kind of customization to the Sugar Mobile version of the CRM software that has only been available for the desktop version.
“With the SDK for Sugar Mobile customers can customize the mobile experience and take advantage of the camera, GPS, push notifications and other features and roll out the exact field sales and service applications for their business,” Clint Oram, cofounder and chief marketing officer at SugarCRM, told eWEEK.
The company said it’s “done the heavy lifting” so corporate or in-house developers don’t have to create apps from scratch. The SDK facilitates such enhancements as integration with enterprise-ready mobile device management tools, custom fields, views and buttons as well as the aforementioned integration with native device capabilities such as GPS navigation and the camera.
The announcement was made Sept. 26 at the company’s annual SugarCon conference in San Francisco where it also unwrapped an updated SugarCRM Hint, an AI-powered tool that helps salespeople by proactively providing sales leads and customer information so they don’t have to search for it.
The new version of SugarCRM Hint now gives salespeople recent news articles about the contact’s organization, such as a merger or expansion plans that may signal an opportunity. Hint was launched in the U.S. in June and now offers additional support for contacts in the U.K., Netherlands and Canada.
Oram said Hint aggregates data from 70 different news sources around the world and employs a layer of artificial intelligence technology to identify stories relevant to a salesperson’s contacts.
While Hint is embedded as part of SugarCRM, at SugarCon the company previewed a new mobile app that works somewhat like a salesperson’s assistant. The new mobile app, code-named Project Dossier, works as either a standalone app or can be integrated with other CRM apps. Among other features the app analyzes your calendar and email and gives you background information about whoever you are meeting with or sending emails to
“The vision we’ve had since day one is that CRM needs to go past being just an application that guides you through transactions with customers, but tells you something you don’t already know about your customer and guides you through your day, helping you to be more efficient,” said Oram. “CRM helps you stay organized, but it’s essentially telling you things you already know. We want the app to tell you something you didn’t already know that can make you more productive.”
The company plans to release the Project Dossier mobile app sometime in 2018. Oram said the mobile assistant will be the first of a number of moves the company plans to make to move beyond what he referred to as traditional CRM paradigms.
“We’re going down the path of an entirely new kind of mobile assistant,” he said.
Also at SugarCon, SugarCRM partner Act-On Software announced a new software bundle that comes with pre-built integration to SugarCRM. Act-On for Sugar automatically updates contact and lead records in Sugar, providing insights into customer behavior and access to Engagement Insights for real-time analytics and reporting.