The SFA market grew 12.8% to an estimated $6.9 billion in 2018. Vendors improved AI for data capture, predictive analytics and relationship intelligence in the past year. Our evaluation of 19 vendors helps application leaders choose the solution that best meets their sales execution requirements.
Gartner defines sales force automation (SFA) as systems that support the automation of sales activities, processes and administrative responsibilities for organisations’ sales professionals. Gartner considers SFA to be a foundational technology, implemented to automate an organisation’s core sales processes.
The core capabilities of SFA include:
Account, contact and opportunity management
Sales activity management
Partner relationship management (PRM)
SugarCRM maintains its spot in the Visionaries quadrant this year, primarily driven by its well-executed marketing strategy and a revamped selling model focused on enterprise IT organisations. The SFA product, also named SugarCRM, is suitable for organisations of all sizes but is focused on midsize and enterprise-size sales organisations with 200 to 5,000 employees. The vendor has one of the top application release cadences of the vendors in this Magic Quadrant. It is one of a handful of these vendors offering multiple deployment options, via SaaS, on-premises or partner-hosted options. SugarCRM continues to enhance the SFA product, recently enhancing its mobile app by enabling sales reps to create, manage and send quotes while in the field. In the past year, the vendor has enhanced its Hint relationship intelligence product and added 100 prebuilt reports.
- Data intelligence: SugarCRM’s Hint product surfaces relevant contact/account information and to sellers by pushing updates through email, in-app dashlets and browser-based notifications. This alleviates some user need to contract with third-party data intelligence solutions, and reduces the amount of time sellers need to spend researching for customer information.
- Customer service and support: SugarCRM received among the highest survey scores for customer service and product support processes of all the vendors in this Magic Quadrant. This is primarily due to the depth of the support offering, from self-service through to VIP support, for customers and partners. Moreover, it offers clients the ability to receive support down at the developer level via code customization reviews.
- Marketing execution: SugarCRM has improved marketing execution in the past year, appearing on an increasing number of the SFA shortlists of Gartner’s clients. Prospects positively noted the importance of the SugarCRM platform for building custom sales processes that do not fit the sales process models provided by other SFA vendors.
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