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Have 37 Signals missed the point?

Last week was spent preparing for, and going to FOWA to promote Tactile CRM. The weekend was therefore spent catching up on email, news, and life in general.

One thing that caught my eye (as I was reading my RSS feeds) was that a competitor has recently rolled out a long overdue feature in their ‘CRM’ product called deals. As a CRM veteran (I’ve been doing this for over 10 years), the concept of deals/opportunities is one of the key features to the CRM concept as it helps to manage and maintain your sales pipeline. Without this a CRM application is not so much a CRM solution, rather a complex address book.

Now the folks at 37 Signals have done a nice job in rolling out deals to their product – one thing they are often criticised about when talking with people is the lack of a roadmap (we have one at Tactile CRM) since people have been requesting this feature for a while.

However, on this occasion I feel they have missed two fundamental features. Firstly, their is no due date on the deal to help you build your pipeline, and secondly, there is no pipeline (graphs/reporting/etc). Without these features I feel they have missed the point. We’ve had these features since day one (see the screenshots below).

Opportunities

At Tactile CRM, we talk with our users, actively encourage them to leave comments and suggestions, and take on board what it is they want.

37 Signals know their market, and create some great applications for their customers, however at Tactile CRM we are after a difference market and hence why, although we like to keep our applications simple, we have a more featured product.

So to the 37 Signals team, congratulations on the new feature, and lets hope we can all help our customers get through the current economic mayhem with some apps to help them streamline their businesses.

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