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Recommendations for a simple CRM that sits within Outlook 2016?

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Gerry Gaffney
Occasional Contributor

Morning folks,

 

Following on from my other messages, does anyone have a recommendation for an add-in that works inside Outlook 2016, simple to use and works without issue?

 

I'm not looking for a bloated heavy anaylictic platform, just an easy way of tracking conversations, setting follow ups and actions but gathering everthing together in one place (sort of what this program promised)

 

Thanks,

 

Gerry

28 Replies

Hi Gerry,

 

Thanks for posting here.

 

May I invite you focus on the first thread in the link below for better assistance:

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Outlook-Customer-Manager/Process-Duplication/m-p/107039#M1526

 

Sorry in any way if it makes inconvenience for you. And your understanding is appreciated.

 

Regards,

Rudy

I'm looking for soemthign as well Gerry.  OCM has been disappointing to say the least.  Which is a shame as it obviously is something that Outlook business users want and need.  I really like the idea/concept behind OCM and was hoping to not to have to revert to a third party solution but we've have been waiting for months for it to be improved and it still is very buggy.  

Hi Tony,

 

We suggest you submit your feedback to our related team via the link below:

https://outlook.uservoice.com/forums/407082-outlook-customer-manager

Microsoft welcomes your feedback on its products.

 

Your time is appreciated.

 

Regards,

Rudy

 

 

 

Morning Rudy,

 

I think what I gather, is that Tony & myself, are at the point where we need something else that 'does what it says on the tin' 

 

I have to say I'm somewhat surprised at how poor the software is, for it's release stage and basic function.

 

I employ a software engineer full time (Automotive test equipment control & GUI) and I'm fairly certain that he could have written something in the timescale since first release, that would operate better and be more stable than this currently is.

 

The product does not come close to matching what the marketing department have promised, the two teams should maybe talk to each other a little more, or someone further up the chain, rightly should have pulled rank and said, this is not fit for release.

 

So if anyone else has any recommendations, I'm all ears.

 

Thanks,

 

Gerry

Have you checked out Zoho CRM? It is affordable and looks decent - integrates w Outlook.

 

 

Hi Gerry,

 

I agree with you and Tony. Outlook customer manager in its current state at the time of writing this post is a frustrating pile of rubbish. How can they call this a business crm....... it doesn't even have job title as a default field!!! I just read on uservoice that it isn't even on the roadmap to sync ocm business contacts with outlook which means that business contacts will not appear in outlook when you try to email. Also it means that business contacts will not sync to mobile devices. Imorting anything is nightmare and trying to work with more than 1 contact is impossible.

 

Given the rate of progress since this app was first released it will be at least 2018 before OCM will be able to do the very basics of contact management. Anyone coming on this community looking for answers dont waste your time. You are just going to be redirected to uservoice and expected to repeat yourself again with no major fixes coming anytime soon.

 

Zoho doesn't have any useful integration with O365. From what i read it only supports calendar. Contacts and emails are not integrated. Insightly looks like a reasonably priced option. From my research it seems that outlook contact management is so terrible to work with that most 3rd party crms cannot properly integrate with it. (This is 1 of the few areas where g-suite wins over o365)

Highlighted

I just started looking into this option earlier in the week - https://www.eway-crm.com/outlook-crm/ I have not tried it yet but it looks to be a replacement crm for BCM.  Seems like a rather brilliant idea and an opportunity for you tech design folks out there... create a functioning crm that looks and acts like BCM, integrates with Outlook 2016/Office 365 and offers a solution to the many folks who have been left high and dry now that Microsoft pulled the plug on BCM  and has not made OCM fully functional.

That's a nice find Tony, what's more, it's music to a Scotsman's ear in that is't free for a single user :)

I'll take a closer look later, thanks for the link

With the recent announcement about Teams/Skype for Biz it would be great if this eWay tool could be integrated/connected to Teams and maybe even Planner in terms of the Tasks component. Truly this is an opp just waiting for the right dev.

This has been a huge disappointment. I was so hoping this was going to work. I am continuing to use "Plan Plus Online," which syncs with 365. Tech support is of no help. It baffles me as to why Microsoft cant get this right

I am NOT a representative for any CRM company but I often do specialized Dynamics 365 customizations. A client I have saw D365 as being "too big" and suggested I review Outlook Customer Manager for him. There is no way I am recommending OCM to him! Because I want to keep him as a client, I have explored alternatives that tightly integrate with Outlook. ZOHO is OK, but the price gets up there when you want customization capabilities.

 

I have been testing eWay CRM and I am pretty impressed with it. The Outlook integration is tight and it has all the features you expect in a CRM (Plus Project Management) for $28/mo per user. It certainly isn't D365, but I am pretty impressed with the features and customization capabilities. My only caveat to my clients is this - When a MS or Google cloud database goes down for ten minutes, it makes news worldwide. The smaller cloud databases are pretty reliable, but I don't usually recommend mission critical data be placed on one without local backup. That being said, eWay is worth a look.

Thank you so much for this info! I will go check out eWay.

I've been testing eWay for a client and I am very impressed with:

- The tight Outlook integration

- The ability to customize it, including custom forms by user role

- The documentation is very honest and complete (though not always perfect English)

- Excellent drag and drop form customization

- The HUB view is really nice (Everything related to an Account/Contact/Project)

- The full version you get for $28/mo

Just OK:

- Workflows will take some getting used to (I am spoiled working with Dynamics 365)

- Like all such add-ons, Outlook takes longer to open

Seems like I am not the only one pulling my hair out with OCM.

 

We are a very small site, three users of which 2 are mobile and 1 office based. Coupled to this we use O365 business pro and Android mobile devices.

 

The silence from MS on OCM is rather deafening and frustrating. Wish they would tell us where we stand!!!

 

Our require are so simple - OCM type structure which we can roll out on Andriod.

 

Any pointers?

Hi Paul,

 

I wish I had better news but unfortunately, I do not.  We are still waiting for OCM to be all that it is capable of being but I see very little progress.  Microsoft has said since the release of OCM that an Android App was in the works... going on two years now!  It is not a high priority for Microsoft.  For now, we have been able to get by with sharing contacts though Outlook, just two of us who share contacts/company data.  I have removed OCM from my wife's Outlook as she was very frustrated with it.  I still have it on mine and check it from time to time to see if any new improvements have been released.  I still have numerous duplicate contacts, thousands of duplicate companies and have had zero help from Outlook and Office365 Support.  I have escalated my issues to highest levels only to be passed from one person to the next with no solution.  The only solution was to delete all contacts/companies and start over!  I spent hours and hours getting contacts/companies setup, categorized and they want me to delete it all and start over!  There should be a seamless import feature with this software and we well know it does not.  I think may folks who have been hanging in there, hoping OCM would get better have left and moved on to others solutions.  


@Tony Sherman wrote:

Hi Paul,

 

I wish I had better news but unfortunately, I do not.  We are still waiting for OCM to be all that it is capable of being but I see very little progress.  Microsoft has said since the release of OCM that an Android App was in the works... going on two years now!  It is not a high priority for Microsoft.  For now, we have been able to get by with sharing contacts though Outlook, just two of us who share contacts/company data.  I have removed OCM from my wife's Outlook as she was very frustrated with it.  I still have it on mine and check it from time to time to see if any new improvements have been released.  I still have numerous duplicate contacts, thousands of duplicate companies and have had zero help from Outlook and Office365 Support.  I have escalated my issues to highest levels only to be passed from one person to the next with no solution.  The only solution was to delete all contacts/companies and start over!  I spent hours and hours getting contacts/companies setup, categorized and they want me to delete it all and start over!  There should be a seamless import feature with this software and we well know it does not.  I think may folks who have been hanging in there, hoping OCM would get better have left and moved on to others solutions.  


Hi Tony, I echo your views. What have you guys moved on to?

Paul,

 

We are using O365 and able to share company contacts through Outlook, which works for now.  Still not the best scenario for us but I spent so much time last year trying to get OCM to work and looking for alternatives, that I felt I was a full time IT guy.  Clearly I am not and had to get back to putting my time and energy into work activities that pay the bills!  One would think that when Microsoft rolls out a piece of software that is supposed to help the small and mid-size business community, they would take the time to make sure it works!  I understand some bugs in any software release but this has been one of my worst experiences.  As I've said in previous posts, it really is a shame because the idea behind OCM is brilliant and much needed!

So, the original post here is nearly a year old, and still Microsoft are failing their O365 customers. When are they going to pull their fingers out and realise that OCM, this "low priority" app, could actually worth something to them if they stopped sitting on their hands, and put some focus here. You and I would be perfectly happy to pay a little extra per user (but not $65 for Dynamics... stupidly expensive), because most of us here are doing this already with 3rd party CRM..... Zoho, vTiger, Salesforce, etc. It needs to be more competent, and it needs to work with ALL OS and web access. Thats really not too much to ask given that it has been under development for nearly two years now. Come on Microsoft, do some work!

Hello Gerry,
have you tried eWay-CRM after all? 
I would love to hear how this went!

Thanks 

 

K.

Hello, 


as somebody has already mentioned, eWay-CRM fits this description perfectly, while being an affordable and well functioning option. 
I happen to be the Consultant of eWay-CRM and therefore know pretty much everything about it, so don't hesitate to ask questions.
Most importantly: eWay-CRM is embedded into Outlook and offers a bunch of modules, such as Contacts, Projects, Deals and more. There is also a Mobile App.
Anyway, why don't you download the FREE TRIAL and see it yourselves!

 

George

 

 

 

George,

Thank you for the information.  I have been evaluating eWay-CRM. I am a small business, just me and my assistant.  We really like it as it is not some overbloated, huge program. The only thing I would like to know is how to get Skype for Business to work with the calling module? Which I have read will not because you need a TAPI driver for SIP.  I have looked and looked for a VOIP provider that supports SIP as well, since I did find a SIP TAPI driver that works with windows (SourceForge is where I found it). It is slim pickings.  Anyone know how to configure Skype with SIP? I don’t think it can be done. I have tried 3CX, TAPI is only offered in their Pro version now. I got a SIP trunk from SIP.US and have tried numerous providers/set ups. I have not been successful in getting the calling feature to work, which is a real bummer because the screenshots in the documentation from eWay looks really good. It is exactly what I would like to implement. With just 2 of us, automation is key to survival and growth.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Cathy

Hello Cathy,

 

thank you for your question.

Simply put: Tapi is necessary. We use 3CX, a system with easy configuration. I strongly recommend this. We also support Asterisk. 

In case you would prefer another system, please try contacting our team via the form on our home page: https://www.eway-crm.com/
Please scroll down for the form.

I hope my answer was helpful.

Best,

 

George

 

 

 

Hello,

I also use Eway for managing a small team and I am very satisfied. 
My business is a technological startup, but I know that Eway has a wide range of clients among all industries. I will be happy to answer any more questions about customer experience.

J.

Thank you George, 

that is great news for me. I am in a similar situation as Cathy now and thinking about switching to Eway. I have 3CX, will the support team of your company help me make it work? I am not very tech savvy! Same question about data migration - can this be handled by Eway?

Best,

 

Fred

You will need 3CX Pro to make it work with eWay. BUT, I have found another softphone that works really well. It is called Juggler and you can download a trial for free from Globaliptel.com. The company name is Global IP Telecommunications. Hope that helps.


@frederick.elliot wrote:

Thank you George, 

that is great news for me. I am in a similar situation as Cathy now and thinking about switching to Eway. I have 3CX, will the support team of your company help me make it work? I am not very tech savvy! Same question about data migration - can this be handled by Eway?

Best,

 

Fred


 

Tony, I couldn't agree more. I started looking elsewhere and found eway, which seemed satisfactory already in trial version. Nothing changed from Microsoft, so I stayed with eway and haven't had a problem with my CRM ever since.

Hello Frederick, 

our team can help you with anything you need. However, if you'd like to migrate data yourself, you can read THIS ARTICLE or check OUR WEBINAR

Please contact the team via george@eway-crm.com to arrange the steps.

 

George

I think the RELATED TEAM are all NOT RELATED to OCM!!
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