By David Sims
David at firstcoffee d*t biz
The news as of the second cup of coffee this morning, and the music in an iPod mix of the late, great Warren Zevon:
Auto/Mate Dealership Systems has announced its Automotive Management Productivity Suite has been integrated with Hyundai's Web-based Dealer Communications System.
The new interface allows Auto/Mate's dealer clients to send financial statements, new vehicle delivery information, parts orders/parts returns and claims data directly from AMPS to Hyundai via the Internet.
"This new module streamlines several Hyundai data submission processes for dealers," said Mike Esposito, president of Auto/Mate. "We know that by increasing administrative efficiencies, we're saving dealers time and money."
AMPS Hyundai DCS interface features let users transmit end-of-month P&L statements and financial reports created in AMPS directly to Hyundai. AMPS transfers vehicle delivery data directly to Hyundai from the system's F&I Billing menu. Once a deal is sold or closed in the system, users can indicate one or multiple vehicles as delivered to the customer. A message displays for each transaction completed.
The system lets parts orders and return data be submitted from AMPS to Hyundai. When parts order data is entered, the interface displays the total parts requested, allowing users to choose which part orders to process.
Service system claims such as recall campaign, pre-delivery inspection, warranty, Hyundai protection plan, replacement part and transportation can be processed right from AMPS' Service System Main Menu.
The product is available as both a cost-effective in-house and ASP product.
Staying with the automotive theme, Cross Country Automotive Services, a vendor of vehicle and driver programs, has been selected by Ford Motor Company to provide emergency roadside assistance to their customers, beginning with model year 2007 Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles.
Cross Country will also be servicing Ford's Extended Service Plan, an extended warranty program for select Ford customers who purchased vehicles after October 1, 2006.
The vendor will provide its emergency roadside assistance to all Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury brands. Ford has also selected Cross Country to provide roadside assistance service to Volvo and Mazda vehicles.
Did you know Ford owns Volvo? First Coffee sure didn't. A little quick fact checking turns out that it happened in... 1999? Talk about being out of it. Ford-Jaguar, yeah, I'd heard of that, but Volvo? That one flew under our radar.
Cross Country's services will be available to customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, Ford officials say. Product benefits include battery jump-start services, flat tire change, emergency fuel delivery, lockout service, and emergency towing services to the closest dealership.
Amy Villeneuve, Senior Vice President Sales, Marketing, and Product Innovation at Cross Country, said her firm services "some of the most customer service-focused brands in the automotive market."
Cross Country recently implemented a proprietary universal contact center application throughout its four contact centers. The CRM platform has "enhanced customer service efficiencies, and increased customer satisfaction," company officials say, adding that it features technologies such as GIS, POI, and mobile technologies.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure, described by its officials as a breast cancer "movement," and CRM vendor Convio have announced that Komen for the Cure is deploying Convio's integrated suite of on-demand software and services.
The move will help Komen use and integrate offline and online campaigns and programs to build relationships and interactions with constituents, movement officials say. The contract includes Komen's global headquarters and all 125 of the organization's affiliates.
"By standardizing on Convio and the Software-as-a-Service model, we can integrate our online and offline marketing campaigns and programs, fundraising and advocacy efforts, as well as our multiple Web sites and constituent data," said Justin Ricketts, vice president of information technology for Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Komen is standardizing on Convio's integrated suite of online software products for fundraising, advocacy, event fundraising, e-commerce, Web content management and e-mail communication. In addition, Komen will replace all existing donor databases with Convio's new open, Web-based constituent relationship management (CRM) system.
The product, code-named Aikido, is built on Salesforce.com's Force.com platform for tracking all constituent interactions across all channels, online and offline.
Workamajig, a software program for ad agencies and others in the creative and design industries, has released version 10.0.0.5 of its project management software, supporting custom Flash widgets, along with updates for Apple's latest Mac OS X Leopard 10.5.4.
The upgrade follows the May update of the integrated Ad Agency system, which converted from Creative Manager Pro to Workamajig, and included an upgrade to its Ad Agency management software. While most of the improvements are in Flash, "all of the improvements are a direct result from research and direct client feedback from actual users of the Creative Management Software," company officials say.
"Today's upgrade takes advantage of the May foundation upgrade, which was the most important step in the development of our ad agency software," says Ron Ause, Workamajig's director of marketing.
Adding custom flash widgets to Workamajig will let users build their own add-ons to personalize and extend the capabilities of the system. Users can create any flash program that is compiled to .swf that can run in a flash player, and add it to the Workamajig desktop. Installed and Local Hosted users can connect to the database and produce their own metric analysis.
Sales-i, a sales acceleration service for front line sales people, has announced that it has "boosted its sales intelligence service" by adding some CRM functionality to "reduce the burden on SMEs to acquire a full customer relationship management system."
Sales-i's customers include small and medium business, industrial and office supply companies. While some have already invested in CRM systems, others prefer to "bolster their sales intelligence system with some key CRM functions," the company says.
The vendor already integrates into CRM systems including Salesforce, NetSuite, Microsoft, ACT,and Goldmine. The decision to add CRM functionality to its own sales intelligence service, company officials say, was "to supply those SMEs who don't yet need a full CRM product, a lighter alternative."
Sales-i CRM will now enable field-based sales people to record facts about customers and contacts, log call outcomes or next actions during or after sales meeting and manage their sales pipelines.
"We are delighted to be able to bridge that gap for some of our customers with our embedded CRM-light or by integrating into their chosen CRM system if preferred," company officials said.