The benefits of an Open Source CRM
By Katy Robinson
What is Open Source software?
I’m fairly certain you’ve come across the term ‘Open Source’ at some point in your life. It pertains to a specific approach in developing computer software in which the original source code is made freely available to the users and allows them to redistribute and modify it. This means that many collaborators can contribute to a piece of software to make it deliver as much value to themselves and the wider community as possible.
Presently, many people are using Open Source software without even realizing it. Android and Ubuntu are popular Open Source platforms you are likely to be familiar with. The internet as we know it today was built on Open Source software and anyone using the Internet today still benefits from this amazing technology.
Comparison with proprietary software
In contrast, people or organizations may maintain exclusive control over a software’s source code and restrict anyone else from legally accessing or modifying it. This type of software is called ‘closed source’ or proprietary software. Whereas Open Source licenses promote collaboration and sharing, proprietary licenses may impose a variety of restrictions such as your ability to share or redistribute the software, whether you can alter or modify it, what you may or may not use the software for and the kind of hardware that the software will require to operate.
Why choose Open Source CRM
Open Source CRM presents businesses with compelling benefits and unique opportunities as do open Source technologies in general. Depending on your exact needs and business model, it can prove to be an intelligent and more economical option. Without further ado, here are the top 5 benefits of an Open Source CRM:
Dependable Developer Community
Open Source communities consist of many contributing developers from all over the world, continuously striving towards the common goal of improving the program. Open access to the source code yields effective collaborations and quick results. Together, talented developers are able to detect and fix bugs faster and share ideas to improve upon features. Companies can also tap into this readily available abundant resource for instant support and answers to queries.
Extensive CRM Customization
Open Source software by nature is meant to be tinkered and played around with. This opens the door for extensive CRM customization. Each and every aspect of an Open Source CRM can be virtually molded and tailored according to a company’s unique needs and preferences. Since the businesses landscape is always changing and no two businesses are alike, this virtue is highly sought after in a CRM. By comparison, customization to such a degree would not be legally possible in a proprietary CRM. With the right skills, any company can shape their Open Source CRM to their liking and if you need help with that you can always leverage our CRM customization services.
Unparalleled CRM Integration
Along similar lines, Open Source CRM can be readily complimented with a plethora of third-party applications and tools due to unrestricted access to API and the source code. CRM integration allows you to enjoy all your favorite tools and services from within a central unified interface, sync information between them and your CRM and completely bypass the need for switching between multiple apps. These effectively enhances your productivity and helps you derive more value from your business tools.
A Thrifter’s Delight
Open Source CRM systems are generally available for free and the hardware associated with these has lower costs. New versions are also made available to users at no extra cost. The developers and maintainers of the CRM might charge you for customizations and dedicated support options but depending on your skills and resources, you always have the alternative of modifying the code yourself. Consequently, you can save a lot on licensing fees.
No Strings Attached
In addition to initial costs, there is always a licensing commitment of some shape and form involved with proprietary CRM. This means that you often wind up paying for a system that you don’t even like or no longer use. Open Source CRM spares you from the hassle of such commitments. You can use it for as long as you like and you always have an easy exit for when you don’t. Furthermore, you can run multiple instances of your Open Source CRM without worrying about any additional licensing fees and getting into trouble over this.
SuiteCRM – The Best Open Source CRM
SuiteCRM is a fully featured, free CRM solution. Since its inception in 2013, it has evolved into the world’s leading Open Source CRM system and is being widely used in multiple industry verticals including Healthcare, Finance, Education and Real Estate.
With the extensive support and customization options that RT Dynamic provides, you can’t go wrong with SuiteCRM.
If the discussion above has served as any indication, an Open Source CRM such as SuiteCRM brings tremendous benefits and opportunities. In fact, SMBs and large enterprises, across the vertical market spectrum are utilizing Open Source CRM to great effect. We can help SuiteCRM do the same for you. So what are you waiting for? Contact us today for your FREE consultation session.