Technology – Exchequer moves into new market.

Mid-range software provider Exchequer Software has revealed plans to expand its product range into the customer relationship management market, following a tie-up with Databank Software. The joining of forces was announced last week and will see the Bournemouth-based vendor link its Enterprise package with Databank’s PROSPECT CRM tool. It is expected that the strategy will trigger a plethora of similar moves from rival mid-range providers during the course of the year. Vendors are faced with the dilemma of writing their own CRM systems or joining forces with third parties. Larger corporate systems providers such as SAP, Oracle and Peoplesoft have already carried out their moves into the CRM market and it now appears the mid-range providers are set to follow suit. A number of mid-range BASDA members are expected to announce similar moves during the course of the year, while providers are being increasingly encouraged to supply the offering.

The product enables users such as field sales people to see a consolidated view of a customer’s account. Data is uploaded and updated automatically through email, so that users always have not just the latest financial information, but also customer and support data as well.

Under the terms of the agreement, Databank – which developed and provided 32-bit CRM solutions for four years to the SME and corporate market – has linked PROSPECT into Exchequer’s Enterprise package to give users a real-time view of a customer’s account including sales, support and finance.

The function can also be used remotely, allowing orders to be taken offline by laptop users.

‘This is about linking the back and front office for a common purpose,’ said Eduardo Loigorri, managing director at Exchequer Software. ‘Company departments shouldn’t be operating in isolation. This is especially true for finance, the core business driver.’

CRM has enjoyed a boom period over the last few years and the signs are the upturn is set to continue.

Andy Ardron, managing director at Databank, added: ‘CRM is an area which most companies are investing in for increased profitability, so it’s vital to ensure it links existing systems and avoids any re-keying of data.’

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