Major types of CRM systems: On-Prem vs Cloud
Going to the cloud should not be a stressful journey. Here you will learn more about the benefits of picking the Salesforce platform.
Picking the right CRM for our business could be a tricky challenge. With so many different offerings on the market it comes almost natural to feel lost and confused about what to look for in a CRM. Starting from what would be the best and fastest way to secure a good ROI, we compare features and benefits against price.
Before we start we need to take a look at what’s available. There are two main types of CRM systems - On-Premises CRM and Cloud-based CRM. In this short article we will go over the pros and cons of both as well as offer some guidelines about choosing the right CRM system.
Those systems are also known as legacy CRM solutions. They require a local server in order to function. They also need dedicated attention from the in-house IT team for service and support. It is a common belief that on-prem CRM systems offer greater levels of security compared to their cloud-based counterparts. That is in fact the only benefit one could think of and the reason why Salesforce puts so much attention on customer trust and security of data. With the Salesforce platform our data is located in the cloud but at the same time it is also in a far superior security environment because of the way Salesforce handles the matters of data security.
While on-prem systems might offer a sense of safety it comes at a serious cost. Legacy CRM systems usually represent a significant initial investment to install and deploy. They require constant IT attention and updates often are feared by admins and users because of the havoc they could trigger. Occasional power outages also have the potential to severely disrupt workflow and cost time to fix.
Furthermore, limited scalability is probably one of the main reasons on-prem systems could not quite hold a candle to modern flexible cloud-based solutions like the Salesforce platform.
Back in 1999 Salesforce was the first company to introduce CRM to the cloud. Today, looking back, it seemed like the logical way to go but back then it wasn’t exactly an overnight success.
Cloud-based is also often referred to as SaaS (Software-as-a-service). The ideology behind it is easy on-demand use of CRM resources from anywhere and any device that is connected to the internet. That’s in fact the only drawback we could identify when comparing cloud-based CRM to legacy on-prem systems. SaaS CRM requires internet connection in order to function properly. In 2020 of course we could also use the Salesforce mobile app offline but would still need connection to be able to get full unlimited access to data.
A good way to describe the difference is to think about how car travel works. We fill up the car at a gas station instead of building individual gas pumps at home. It’s cheaper, easier and stress-free compared to the alternative. The cloud-based CRM offers pretty much the same benefits. It is a highly scalable, on-demand solution that could grow as our business grows.
Furthermore, in the post-COVID19 world, remote work has become an integral part of the business realm. With a cloud-based CRM organisations could easily administer remote access, track activities and monitor different levels of access to data.
More than just a CRM
Even though it started as a cloud-based CRM, today Salesforce is a cloud business platform. It empowers us to build apps, optimise and automate processes and most of all - dramatically change our work habits when it comes to data. With Salesforce we could easily communicate, share and discuss over data while at the same time benefit from a constant 360 degree view of our customer.
Salesforce is an incredibly versatile and powerful platform that we can customize to fit the specific needs of our business.
Moreover, Salesforce would also allow us to go for a hybrid CRM system, a model where we combine the power and agility of the cloud and integrate it with our legacy infrastructure to get data.
Finally, let’s address the matter of how we choose a proper CRM system. In order to build a viable plan for such a solution we need to take a look in the future. What business might need today is probably different from the projection in five years from now. Therefore, single stand-alone solutions might not be sufficient. If we want sustainability we need to think scalability.
If you consider transitioning from a legacy on-prem CRM system or just explore options for a new CRM solution, reach out and let us explore what is possible within the ecosystem of Salesforce.