• June 1, 2007

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  • PRM Rides the CRM Tide Partner relationship management (PRM) is a crucial technology for any business that has indirect sales channels, and a number of software vendors have risen to the challenge of helping companies coordinate with their allies. According to "The Forrester Wave: Partner Relationship Management Tools, Q2 2007," the two strongest swimmers are Oracle and SAP, far outpacing the market for on-premise PRM software in terms of strategy, current offering, and market presence.
  • Oracle Picks a BlackBerry for Spring Mobile will soon be a must-have for CRM vendors and CRM users alike, according to analysts. Oracle Corporation announced a push toward this wireless future with the release of Oracle Siebel Wireless for Research in Motion's BlackBerry smartphones. Following the release of Siebel Wireless for Windows Mobile, this announcement shows a strong push by Oracle to enable all CRM users access out of the office and on the road. The release may prove to be a significant differentiator for Oracle in the CRM space.
  • Gartner Slots Multichannel Campaign Management Vendors Gartner has unveiled its "Magic Quadrant for Multichannel Campaign Management, 1Q07," tagging Oracle's Siebel Systems, SAS Institute, Teradata, and Unica as leaders in the competitive landscape. The vendors have high market visibility, high market penetration, strong market momentum, and a strategic vision for growing the campaign management business, according to Gartner.
  • Brits Are Bucking the Outsourcing Trend Outsourcing CSRs to India is controversial, but a new report by analyst firm ContactBabel states that contact centers being farmed out to India is having little effect on call centers in Britain, which will provide more than one million jobs by the end of the year. The industry grew by 6 percent last year, mainly because of expansion by firms that already have centers based in the country.
  • Shameful Service Customer service isn't what it used to be, according to a new survey from Hornstein Associates. The consultancy conducted its annual customer support email survey and found service standards to have hit an all-time low in 2007. Timely email response to customer queries has declined by about 50 percent since 2002. The report argues that a heavy reliance on technology with little attention paid to best practices is responsible for companies' poor performance.
  • Software AG Is Set to Acquire webMethods Integration software provider webMethods is getting scooped up by Germany-headquartered Software AG, a systems software and service-oriented architecture (SOA) provider, for an all-cash offer of about $546 million. The transaction is intended to boost Software AG's footprint in the SOA/business process management (BPM) space and nudge it closer to its goal of becoming a billion-euro company by 2011. While the deal has been approved by Software AG's supervisory board and webMethods's board of directors, it is subject to customary closing conditions and expected to close during the second quarter of 2007.
  • Salesforce.com Builds Bricks with Adobe Adobe Systems and Salesforce.com have announced the availability of Adobe Flex Toolkit for Apex, a new set of programming tools using Adobe Flex to create new business applications for the Salesforce.com Apex platform. According to the companies, developers using Flex Toolkit for Apex can create richer applications for their Salesforce.com deployments and make them available on the AppExchange directory. (For the full stories and more news, visit destinationCRM.com.)
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