CRM Study from Salesboom, Mind CTI Gets Omni, ERP and CRM in El Salvador, Amdocs and Alcatel in Belarus, The Nobel America-Bashing Prize

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CRM Study from Salesboom, Mind CTI Gets Omni, ERP and CRM in El Salvador, Amdocs and Alcatel in Belarus, The Nobel America-Bashing Prize

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is the East Village Opera Company’s eponymous début album:

Kicking things off in a jovial mood -- it's Eid al Fitr here in Istanbul, some end of Ramadan holiday, I'm not sure exactly what that means except for having to gnaw two-day old pide because all the bakeries are closed. Tomorrow's Sheker Bayram, "Sugar Holiday," when kids come to your door for candy but don't dress up. Evidently kids on the street can hit you up for candy or coins as well.

So we'll open things on a light note, and give Fortune columnist Anne Fisher's findings of the ten dumbest things she's heard of job hunters saying in an interview.

The job seeker "told me to hire him because he was allergic to unemployment," "said that we should hire him because he would make a great addition to our softball team" and "said he should get the job because he had already applied three times and he felt that it was now his turn to be hired."

One "said we had nice benefits, which was good because he was going to have to take a lot of leave in the coming year." Another "drafted a press release announcing that we had hired him," and one intrepid soul "explained that he had no relevant experience for the job he was interviewing for, but his friend did."

There's the guy who "delivered his entire cover letter in the form of a rap song," the woman who "told me she wanted the position because she wanted to get away from working with people," and one who "brought his mother to the interview and let her do all the talking."

And nobody forgot the job-seeker who "gave us his resume in a ten-gallon hat when our company moved to Texas.", a vendor of software-as-a-service CRM and back office products, has released its first CRM User Behavior Study, based upon "researching platform users," according to company officials.

Beginning in April 2006, platform users served as the basis of this study. Product engineers at have used the findings to "improve user experience with different tools and technologies such as Ajax, streamlining CRM processes," company officials say.

According to the study, 67 percent of users "continuously seek shortcuts to complete a task," as opposed to First Coffee's informal finding that 99 percent of the general population employs the practice.

Frequent CRM logins directly correlate to improved task times, the study found, and that Ajax-notes facilitated 61 percent more data entry compared with regular post-style notes. Workflow automation increased sales when used, and only 32 percent of sales organizations use Proposal and Quote Management within CRM.

39 percent of sales people "fully use CRM to their advantage," the study found, adding that "one of three sales people use Events and Tasks religiously," only 19 percent of users attempt to build custom reports and "46 percent of users re-click on a link if load-time is over 2 to 3 seconds."

71 percent of users preferred the integrated e-mail client over MS Outlook, when available, and 68 percent of administrators don't use a sandbox when customizing CRM.

The organizations with highest user adoption rates also frequently customized their CRM, the study found, adding that service organizations that used the Self Service Portal and Knowledge Base closed cases 18 percent faster, on average.

This CRM User Behavior study will be an ongoing program of study at said Troy Muise, CEO.

Billing and CRM systems company Mind CTI has announced that it is buying Omni Consulting Company Limited, which trades as Abacus Billing, for about $7.4 million, according to the Israeli industry journal Globes.

Abacus Billing is a British company providing "managed services for customer care and billing products to telecommunications carriers and large resellers," according to Globes: "It is also active in information and billing for utility smart metering. The company has about 30 employees."

Carriers around the world are "lately looking more into the managed services option and we are now better positioned to capitalize on this trend," said Mind CEO Monica Eisinger, adding that the acquisition "puts Mind in a good position for increased success in the European market."

The new division will continue to be led by Karl Wills, CEO of Abacus Billing, and the current management team.

Mind CFO Oren Bryan said his company's acquiring Abacus for about $7.4 million, in cash, of which about $6 million is to be paid upon closing. "The transaction is expected to be neutral to earnings per share, excluding acquisition-related items, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2007, and accretive to earnings per share, excluding acquisition-related items, in fiscal 2008 and thereafter," Bryan said.

El Salvadorian software consultancy Consisa expects the ERP business in El Salvador and Guatemala to reach maturity within two years, the firm's sales director Jorge Martnez told local industry journal BNamericas.

The firm offers various services and products, such as Microsoft Dynamics ERP and CRM products. The company also offers IT training and last year launched e-learning for English language with a focus on IT, BNamericas reports:

"Sales of Microsoft's CRM and ERP Dynamics products represent 40 percent of Consisa's revenue, but the maturity that Martnez referred to means the ERP market will be tapering off within two years."

Still, the executive told BNamericas the CRM market in Central America will continue growing beyond that. "CRM revenues will continue to grow thanks to large companies and the current trend of mergers and acquisitions in the financial services sector. Also business intelligence revenues will start reflecting global growth trends," he said.

To deal with the inevitable maturing of the ERP market in El Salvador and Guatemala, Martnez told the journal he plans to take Consisa's products to Honduras and Nicaragua within the next two years. The 22 year-old firm now serves over 650 clients and opened offices in Guatemala in 2006. In 2007, the firm expects revenues of between $3 million and $6 million.

Alcatel- Lucent and Amdocs have announced the deployment of an integrated, end-to-end Operations Support System product for Belorusskaya Set Telekommunikatsiy, a mobile network operator in Belarus, to centrally manage its network inventory and assets.

The product is expected to enable a variety of BeST divisions to view up- to-date information about their network resources, BeST officials say, adding that they hope to minimize operational expenditures by analyzing the level of existing network resource usage to optimize network capacity.

Alcatel-Lucent deployed the Amdocs Cramer OSS in just seven months, delivering an array of services. Amdocs' unified OSS product supports future development and deployment of new services without creating further fragmentation of the OSS environment.

Wanna win the Nobel Peace Prize? It's easy -- be an embittered, globetrotting, America-bashing Democrat presidential election loser. Works like a charm.

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1 Comment

The user behavior study released by opens some eyes. If users are looking for shortcuts then why don't vendors give it to them, studies like this will help vendors realize how people use their software so it can be altered for the best fit.

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