[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Re: Comparable program to ACT! -- ACT! is generic overload ...
On Thu, 2004-01-08 at 10:39, Stephen D. Reindl wrote:
> I'm getting ready to purchase ACT!. I have to run Windows because the
> Multiple Listing Service website does not work with anything other than
> IE. (If you know how to fix this, contact me off list, it's something to
> do with the Java VM and IE. Some of the features spawn a child window,
> and none of the functions in the child window work under anything other
> than IE, very disturbing.) So I'm probably, for convenience sake, going
> to purchase it, but If there is a comparable program for
> Linux/opensource that someone knows about I'd be willing to give it a
> shot. ACT! is not just simple contact management, BTW.
There are advanced, custom CRM systems for Linux, the great majority are
web-based, some are frameworks you can customize.
There are three things you should know about ACT!:
1) It's _very_fat_.
If you are going to use it for more than a dozen users, you're asking
for trouble. A thin front-end and _real_ SQL back-end is much better,
far more scalable. I would _never_ use it as a long-term solution. I
don't know how many installations I've seen where ACT! constantly loses
data because it's so fat.
2) It is "generic" and not very customizable
This is the kicker. ACT! is very _poor_ for many businesses. It's
almost an "overload" of screens, many of which are not geared towards
most industries, and users start to "pick and choose" what they do and
don't use -- often _differently_ than other users. It's not long before
_no_one_ is collaborating, and everyone is using ACT! differently and in
their own way, with their own field choices, etc... other than basic
info. Which brings me to ...
3) Training is required for it to work in your business
Most companies just throw ACT! at people and it instantly starts to
bloat, have odd fields filled in by some, others by others, etc... It's
not long (maybe 6 months) before it becomes a total mess. You _must_
come up with a training program to teach users _where_ they need to be
entering data for your business.
In reality, it is _more_cost_effective_ to take an existing, web-based
CRM framework and customize it for your industry into a long-term
solution. It's worth the cost to your company to invest this time and
effort. You're going to have to do it with the "generic" ACT! solution,
which is still "overload" for most poeple, so it's far better to give
them an "easier-to-follow, standard interface" in a CRM customized for
P.S. Another "major" issue I have with ACT! is the _lack_ of "revision
control" or "histories" of contacts. People can update each other's
records and _lose_ previous information. This can cause issues. A
_real_ CRM system needs to have _full_histories_ of contacts, records,
Bryan J. Smith, E.I. mailto:email@example.com
To unsubscribe, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org with
"unsubscribe silug-discuss" in the body.