Oracle Answers CRM Critics
Answering criticism about its CRM offering, Oracle unveiled this week that Underwriters Laboratories has chosen Oracle E-Business Suite, including more than a dozen Oracle CRM applications.
Underwriters Laboratories, a large safety-testing and certification organization, plans to use Oracle E-Business Suite to automate and manage its business workflows throughout the organization. Specifically, the CRM applications will help provide real-time quotes and automated invoices to its customers around the world, along with putting customer information into the hands of Underwriters Laboratories' employees. And SCM applications such as advanced planning and order management modules will be used to schedule required resources for testing various products.
The decision to go with Oracle centered on the software vendor's tightly integrated solution that spans supply and demand operations, according to Underwriters Laboratories. "The Oracle E-Business Suite will allow us to automate multiple processes, which in turn will allow us to pass the quality enhancement directly onto our customers, helping them achieve global acceptance for products and increased efficiency," said Mark Sklenar, vice president and chief information officer at Underwriters Laboratories, in a statement.
The customer win comes at a time when Oracle faces criticism over its lackluster CRM efforts and sales. Industry watchers say that Siebel and PeopleSoft are the number one and two CRM leaders, in terms of market share, respectively. Meanwhile, "Oracle's CRM efforts have really fizzled," says Erin Kinikin, vice president of e-business applications and strategies at Giga Information Group.
When asked about Oracle's CRM efforts, Andrew Kass, vice president of CRM Development, played up his company's integration strengths and ability to tie CRM and SCM systems with Oracle's back-end systems. "We don't really look at CRM as a separate thing," Kass told Line56 last week. "It all has to work together, and that's why we call our product Oracle E-Business Suite."