Fewer customers are happy with Oracle CRM, according to user group survey

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Fewer Oracle customers are happy with their CRM implementations this year than last, according to a survey undertaken by the UK Oracle User Group and revealed at the UKOUG conference yesterday.

This, according to Ronan Miles, the user group’s chairman, indicates that there has been a decline in confidence in CRM due partly to the immaturity of the market and partly to the immaturity of the Oracle product set.

But he added: “CRM has gone through the bottom curve, but is rising because there’s a better understanding now of what it can and can’t do and next year, we expect things to improve again.”

Last year, Miles said, CRM was seen “as a silver bullet designed to kill the devil”, with various early adopters making barbed comments about reliability and functionality. This year, however, he said the comments were more specific in nature rather than broad-based and there was “less heat” in them.

But confidence has improved in the vendor’s ERP and I-Procurement packages as they mature, reliability increases and customers know what they’re getting.

Things do not look so good on Oracle’s own customer support side of things though, with users citing, among other things, the language barriers faced following the company’s decision to outsourced operations to India.

Miles says: “While the perception of OracleMetaLink [its web support service] improved, the overall perception of support declined and it’s now about phone support.”

While he did not imagine that the feedback would come as a surprise to Oracle, Miles added: “I don’t think it would be fair to ask Oracle to do an about-face, but we will be asking what learning experiences can be gained from this and, because members are doing this too, what lessons we all can learn.”

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