Sage Offers New Tools To Ease Migration To Its CRM

Sage Software

Sage is targeting a new set of migration tools at users of the rival Goldmine contact manager who might want to make the jump to full-fledged CRM. The company also hopes to keep its Act users in-house as they transition to higher end CRM.

For better or for worse, Sage fields three CRM products: Act, Saleslogix, and Sage CRM. The latter, acquired with Accpac, comes in two flavors Sage CRM for on-premises use and for hosted use.

The various CRM offerings "serve different segments, and the partners love them. But when a client's business changes and the partner needs to move them, here is a tool to help with that," Dave Batt, senior vice president and general manager of Global CRM for Sage, told CRN.

"SageCRM is a single line that can be deployed on premises or be hosted. It helps [Sage compete] against, and it's the fastest-growing of the three," Batt said.

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Users can start out with the hosted offering and then move to on-premise or vice versa. Saleslogix is for companies that want customized CRM that leverages their unique business processes.

Sage’s migration tools aren’t free, though. Partners will be charged on a time basis, and licenses for one-, two- and three-week periods or more are available depending on specific needs. The price ranges from $495 to $1,495, based on the time period the tools are required.

Batt said Sage is considering migration tool versions for competitive offerings, including Microsoft Dynamics CRM and

Andrew Boyd, vice president of strategy for Global CRM at Sage, said the tools are ETL software, which he described as “a central engine to move data about and a set of migration packs configured for what you need." ETL stands for extraction, transform and load software used by companies and partners to clean up and format data for its most efficient use.

Sage, which for legal reasons had gone under the Best Software moniker in the United States until recently, knows that its multi-CRM strategy causes some confusion and is trying to sort that out. All of the products from Act to Saleslogix now carry a Sage brand as well. Sage PLC, the parent company, is based in the United Kingdom.

"Migration packs and integration tools that make it easier to move upstream with the customer are always a good idea," said Greg Boyd, president of ERG, a Dallas-based Sage partner.

The migration tools news, along with details on some 15 other product updates, was highlighted at Sage's Insight 2006 partner conference in Nashville, Tenn.

At the show, Sage also launched Sage Peachtree Quantum edition to fill the needs-gap between low-end Peachtree accounting software and higher-end Accpac or MAS 90 financial packages. The software targets business with up to 10 named users and will ship next month, along with the new Peachtree by Sage 2007 product lineup, which sports a new user interface and better integration with Microsoft Office.

"[Peachtree] Quantum will absolutely be a factor in keeping people around. The usable database size is probably four times what it was, and Peachtree 2007 is a complete redesign with much easier navigation," said Frank Stitely, a CPA and partner at Stitely, Karstetter and Greenfeld, a Chantilly, Va.-based Sage partner.

Mark Soltis, president of Soltis Consulting, Topeka, Kan., said he will evaluate Peachtree Quantum but initially is impressed. "Quantum will keep more people in the family for Sage. [Intuit] QuickBooks has made some aggressive moves. This counters that and more."