CRM is the most important productivity tool for any organization. There are a lot of solutions available in the market from free to use open source solutions to more elaborate versions from establish companies such as Microsoft and Google.
While Sales Force being the segment leader for SME’s its still considered a little expensive by some businesses owing to its user based subscription model. For such requirements there are two solutions available these are Sugar CRM and Vtiger.
Sugar CRM has both the paid and community version. The paid version obviously has more bells and whistles like extensive reporting and process manager. The Open Source edition too has most of the features and a very active community support.
Vtiger started off as a purely free CRM tool but eventually became a paid solution with the Open source being pushed to the SourceForge platform. The solution has the underpinnings of SugarCRM but has been hugely modified to suit SME sector.
Under The Hood
Since both solutions use the same architecture and programming platform ( PHP – MySql) there is nothing that separates them in terms of performance. Sugar CRM has an extensive Studio and Module builder in the admin interface which gives more power to the Administrator. You can easily customize Sugar CRM to suit your business process.
Vtiger on the other hand is more of a plug and play solution where the Administrator can just add fields in the modules. Saying that the Vtigers comes with few decent tools built right in to the package. There is a Work Flow manager and a Reporting tool which are badly missed in Sugar CRM. There also is a decently working Invoicing Module which is out of the box and works great.
Sugar has a very active community and a great market place for the modules. You can find modules for almost every thing that you can think of. The only problem being that most of these modules aren’t supposed to work precisely, Hence its bit of a pain to install and uninstall these modules. The forums are very active and you are more than certain to get answers to your problems.
Being Fairly young compared to Sugar, Vtiger neither has an active community nor do they have the marketplace for the modules. Hence all you get is a nicely packaged CRM tool and than you are on your own to figure things out. Also since the company has changed tracks from being a free solution to a completely paid solution there isn’t any hope that a moderated community will be formed in future.
Wrapping it Up
SugarCRM is a better solution if your business process demands heavy modifications. You might miss out on the reporting and process flow manager but you can always install third part modules for the same. Vtiger is a better solution for the businesses which have a simple process flow and need an out of box product. Its fast and has most of the functionality build right in.
Sugar CRM : http://www.sugarforge.org/