What is Open Source CRM?
The term open source CRM denotes high-end customer relationship management applications founded on the Open Source principles of development and production. Although a relatively new concept, many organizations are quick to recognize this technology. Today small-to-medium size organizations worldwide consider open source CRM software as a low-cost yet fully integrated CRM solution to manage business customer relationships.
Open Source CRM's may be hosted or desktop solutions. They are developed by individuals or organizations subject to open-source software development licenses. One of the main features, probably one that makes the applications so popular is that they are free to access (or with just minimum cost) and can be quickly deployed and easily scaled to suite individual enterprise requirements. Updated versions of the core application can be quickly build and released to take care of unique organization needs.
With Open Source CRM Software you can Streamline Business Processes and Improve Business Customer Relationships
Open source CRM software are developed keeping in mind the demands of organizations to integrate key business function areas, to improve employee performance and thereby maximize customer satisfaction. The applications help to integrate sales, marketing and customer service functions. By safely storing volumes of business and customer data, the applications enable businesspersons to adopt time critical decisions, and analyze and understand customer preferences. This helps to provide one-to-one services to improve customer satisfaction and maximize customer retention.
Many companies offer open source Customer management solutions which can be freely downloaded from their site. Maybe these applications are not yet a complete substitute for traditional high-end CRM applications. But you will be surprised at the level of integration and sophistication that some of them offer.
Open source CRMs provide a head start towards the advanced enterprise-class systems that you have in mind. You can download the open source software and then customize it in ways your specific business requires.
However prior to deciding on an open source CRM you should check out the licensing issues. There are nearly 60 different open source licenses. If you are looking to install and use a packaged application then there are generally no problems attached. But if you want to modify the code then at times there are stringent guidelines you may have to look out for.