PRESS RELEASE: Hostcomm aims to disrupt the customer relationship management (CRM) market with an innovative new offering – Hostcomm ContactFlow CRM. Uniquely hosted on dedicated servers with firewall protection for added security, this competitive system differs from existing CRM systems in a number of ways – security is just the start.
Perhaps most impressively, it combines the advanced business process automation, VoIP integration, dialler technology, scripting and a secure client portal – all without the need to subscribe to separate costly packages.
ContactFlow CRM is currently available for only £10 per user per month. In effect, it is a powerful CRM system, a dialler, and a secure customer support portal – all in one.
“We’ve seen the impact that a CRM system can have, but also the costs incurred in getting a system live and embedded into an organisation,” says Chris Key, Director at Hostcomm. “With everything moving to the cloud, we wanted to deliver a secure solution – hosted, but hosted on a dedicated server. As a result, we could give businesses control over their own databases, as well as firewall protection that just isn’t available on a shared server. As for features, we’d seen that a joined-up approach to the sales pipeline gets results, but achieving that seamlessness has traditionally meant paying for multiple packages at great expense. We realised there was no technical reason that a CRM system had to be so expensive – we could give people the advanced features they’d expect to integrate into an enterprise platform, without the expense.”
Until now, the CRM sector has been dominated by a few key platforms, offering improved sales pipeline management capabilities. It is this dominance that has allowed them to charge high license fees to those enterprises that are ready to make a major investment. However, many organisations are looking for a more affordable alternative that includes advanced functionality. What’s more, moving to the cloud comes with its own security concerns and increased risks.
The benefits of a CRM system stretch far beyond sales pipeline management – including more efficient processes, reduced admin, the ability to close deals faster, and customer portal functionality for managing client relationships. These benefits are required by organisations of every size.
Built on the foundation of SugarCRM, a proven, rapidly growing solution in its own right, ContactFlow CRM is highly tailored and supplemented with features that have traditionally been the preserve of high-cost systems. These include workflow automation, which can handle tasks like sending follow-up emails after a call, or dispatching sales collateral, with no user input. This reduces the risk of errors and leaves users to focus on making sales and delivering service.
ContactFlow CRM also includes integrated dialler capabilities. While telesales teams can work in the dialler separately from the CRM system to increase the speed of outbound dialling and maximise productivity, their call dispositions can lead to follow-up events in the CRM system itself. For example, leads can be dropped directly into the CRM system, triggering workflow and continued contact from the customer care team. Similarly, leads from web forms can be inserted into the CRM, triggering outbound calling activity to close the sale.
In addition, ContactFlow CRM includes a secure client portal, which acts as a secure means of interaction between businesses and their customers. In effect, customers themselves can log into an area of the CRM system to view their information, communication records, raise and track support cases, and upload documentation into a secure repository. This enables a closer connection between businesses and their customers and better customer service.
Finally, VoIP integration gives businesses several key benefits. True one-click calling allows CRM system users to save time by eliminating manual dialling – they simply click the relevant telephone number in a customer record to initiate a call. Meanwhile, screen ‘pop’ allows customer records to be displayed on-screen based on incoming caller IDs. This equips every agent with the necessary information to deliver a personal level of service, including sales histories, support logs, and more.
What’s more, since all of SugarCRM’s existing plug-ins are fully compatible with ContactFlow CRM, businesses have endless opportunities to expand, extend, and customise their systems.
“The CRM sector is naturally growing and moving to a wider range of free and low-cost options,” says Key. “Our priority with ContactFlow CRM was always to lead the way by creating a low-cost offering that didn’t compromise on features. But it’s also about flexibility – not only is the system itself highly flexible, with its API and customisable interface, but businesses retain their own flexibility while using it.”
Many existing CRM systems come with licensing plans that restrict their customers. For example, several solutions include unpredictable costs as the space required to store customer records grows. Hostcomm ContactFlow CRM takes a more agile approach offering full database access. If storage space runs low, customers can opt to archive older records that are infrequently used, add additional storage modules to their dedicated server, or migrate to a larger server. Similarly, organisations retain full access to their database, allowing the use of advanced reporting solutions like Crystal Reports.
“We want ContactFlow CRM to be an asset, not an obstacle,” says Key. “And the best way to do that is to give businesses complete control and the maximum choice. We’ve included a huge range of features that aren’t usually seen in a CRM system on this price level. We’ve added VoIP and dialler integration. But people can use ContactFlow CRM in a way that makes sense for them – whether they’re a call centre running a big outbound campaign, or taking leads from a web form and automatically responding by email and SMS. It’s high flexibility, at a low cost.”