The news as of the second cup of coffee this morning, and the music is Hootie and the Blowfish's Cracked Rear View. I'm not ashamed to admit it:
A study by the Association of German Engineers (VDI) showed that "half of all German companies do not make use of customer relationship management systems (CRM-systems)," according to the study's sponsors.
In most companies, the study found, there is not a systematic controlling of the bidding process -- "75 percent of companies said that bid proposal management is a usual everyday process which is not systematically planned," VDI officials said, adding that "this fact shows that there is still a lot of potential for improvement in this process."
Many companies consider customer relation management to be "quite unimportant" -- study officials said that about 20 percent of respondents said that they do not have any particular measures strengthening their relations with customers.
In a fairly surprising finding, and maybe something got lost in translation here, the study's sponsors said "one quarter of businesses do not measure their business success regularly." Just reading off the cue cards here, folks, but First Coffee would be open to correction on that stat.
80 percent of those companies interviewed are faced with the requirement of more individual and more rapid products which in general increase the cost of bid proposal management, the study found, adding that "to customers, quality and value for money are more important than a price."
Vettro, a vendor of mobile on-demand business applications, has announced it has joined the HP Software ISV Marketplace Referral Program to accelerate the adoption of its mobile products for HP Service Manager 7.0. Vettro now has access to HP's portfolio of services and content.
As a mobile applications provider, Vettro can "address all phases of the service deployment cycle," said Matt Finkelstein, Vettro's vice president of product management. "We are pleased to work with HP in this initiative."
"Customers can reduce costs by decreasing the time it takes to resolve and prevent service issues," said Brad Kern, vice president of worldwide alliances, software, HP. "HP's collaboration with Vettro allows our customers to access HP Service Manager on a mobile product platform."
Earlier this year Vettro announced mobile support for HP Service Manager 7.0 enabling IT organization to increase productivity, improve service level agreements, and better measure IT contribution to the bottom line.
Vettro's mobile application for HP Service Manager is packaged with a graphical configuration utility that provides an install directly into the HP Service Manager environment. Data is connected to and from the Vettro mobile IT Service Management application without any custom coding.
Apisphere, a vendor of location-awareness services for mobile business applications, has announced it will be integrating location-aware field force automation capabilities with ICOMMM's infrastructure asset management software, which provides monitoring and support capabilities for water distribution and sanitary system infrastructures.
Customers will see ROI "in the form of faster response times and lower fuel expenditures thanks to the more efficient deployment of service vehicles and crews," Apisphere officials say.
ICOMMM's technology is used to assess maintenance and capital improvements requirements and helps to protect water and sanitary system infrastructure. It is integrated with geographical information systems and ties in mapping with work management tools.
Apisphere's Geo-Enabled Mobility platform will be integrated with ICOMMM's infrastructure asset management software to enhance its location-awareness capabilities. The product will target geographical information in real-time, helping maintenance crews access specific relevant information when assessing infrastructure requirements.
"Our utility customers require accurate, immediate data to maintain water and sanitary systems, and to quickly respond to service calls and emergency situations," said Steven Line, CEO of ICOMMM.
Apisphere's GEM platform will give ICOMMM's customers navigation capabilities including directions to service stops, route optimization, mobile resource location and tracking, and will automate work assignments based on where available resources are located.
InsideView has released SalesView for Landslide, a bundled business search and intelligence application available to all Landslide Technologies customers.
SalesView calls itself a ''socialprise application." Company officials explain that it's "designed to use social data in the enterprise by bringing the insights gained from both subscription-based and user-generated sources."
Landslide used InsideView's iView platform APIs and mash-ups to integrate SalesView into their Sales Workstyle Solution in a matter of weeks. SalesView business search and intelligence is now available to all Landslide customers as an embedded, "always-on" application, company officials say.
"With InsideView's socialprise application, Landslide's customers can now use data on the social Web to identify opportunities... and speed up their sales cycle," said Jill Konrath, author of Selling to Big Companies.
SalesView, InsideView's flagship application, brings together social data with enterprise-grade search and intelligence capabilities. Landslide Technologies, Inc. is privately held with headquarters in Pittsburgh. InsideView is privately held and venture-backed by Emergence Capital Partners, Greenhouse Capital Partners and Rembrandt Venture Partners. InsideView sales force automation partners include Salesforce.com, SugarCRM, Microsoft and Landslide Technologies.
BakBone Software, a vendor of heterogeneous integrated data protection products, has announced that its Channel Advantage Partner Program has new elements to help Channel Partners use BakBone.
The BakBone Channel Advantage Program's initiatives "reflect BakBone's ongoing commitment to be responsive and easy to engage," according to BakBone officials.
Channel Partners now get what BakBone officials say are "greater financial rewards, more streamlined communication, a redesigned partner portal, online certification classes, and a zero-risk proof-of-concept campaign that enables potential customers to test drive a full version of NetVault: Backup before they buy it."
BakBone has also recently introduced full adoption of VMware technology and techniques, support for SharePoint, enhanced Oracle database protection and real-time data protection for Exchange, SQL and Windows file system data.
Mark Williams, vice president of North America Sales, BakBone, said they offer Channel Partners the opportunity to "work with a company that doesn't compete with them in the sales cycle."
Built on the existing BakBone channel program, the new initiatives include new program requirements, new program benefits as well as "a redesigned training and certification curriculum, including online certification," company officials say.
There's also a zero-risk proof-of-concept program that allows users to try NetVault: Backup for 30 days with a technical expert onsite to perform installation at no cost to the potential customer.