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Archive for the ‘FileMaker Pro Solutions’ Category

What to Look for in CRM Software

February 19th, 2013

CRM software is customer relationship management software. The CRM business model is widely used and guides a company’s relationships with its current and potential clients or customers. CRM is a business organization and automation platform that uses technology to streamline four major aspects of business:

Sales
Customer service
Marketing
Technical support

These four parts of the business model are used to recruit new clients, manage and maintain current clients, win back lost clients, and increase revenues by decreasing the costs of marketing. A business must place a lot of emphasis on customer service in order to adopt this model.

Advantages of the CRM Business Model

CRM helps businesses use technology to streamline and organize business operations. Some benefits of using CRM software include:

Increased revenues
Decreased costs
Increased efficiency of employees
Increased efficiency of operations
Better internal and external company communications
Better customer service and client retention

CRM software uses sales force automation to streamline the sales process. Sales reps spend less time on each phase of the sales process, allowing them to take on more clients or for the company to use fewer sales reps to manage the same amount of clients.

Finding the Right CRM Software

There are hundreds of different types of CRM software, each tailored to the different types of businesses that rely on sales force and customer relations. How can you tell which one is right for your business?

Custom-designed CRM software programs are tailored to your individual business’s organizational and management needs. When you use a custom program to automate your business, you don’t have to worry about choosing the right type of CRM platform for your organization.

Here are some of the CRM software tools and management features you may want to integrate into your business’s own customized software.

FileMaker Pro. FileMaker Pro is a universal, customizable automation system that syncs your business’s current software management system with computer operating systems, desktop applications, and mobile devices, keeping all your workers on the same page and eliminating double data entry.

Outlook automation. By automating data exchange between Microsoft Outlook and FileMaker Pro, you can sync desktop applications such as Contacts, Calendar, Tasks, Mail, Notes, and Journal with the FileMaker database and mobile devices. All computers and devices on the system can automatically share information and all users view applications in the same windows.

Apple automation. If your office uses Mac OS you can similarly sync data exchange between FileMaker Pro and common desktop applications such as iCal, Address Book, and IMAP mail. If your employees use both Microsoft and Apple operating systems, you can eliminate double entries and get your entire office on the same FileMaker system through automation.

Custom iPhone and iPad applications. Allow your business’s mobile devices to communicate with your desktop computers and the FileMaker system. If your sales reps use mobile devices to make appointments, record client contacts and account data, and manage email, devices can be setup to sync with the main system automatically and save extra time spent updating multiple systems.

QuickBooks automation. Most small businesses manage their finances through QuickBooks. By streamlining QuickBooks with Filemaker you can automatically enter invoices, receipts, contacts, and sales transactions into the main office system and eliminate double entry of data. Electronically recording invoices, sales transactions, and accounts payable and receivable eliminates the need for paper record storage.

Utility plug-ins. These customizations allow your office’s different electronic transactions to automatically record and update information within the main system. You can automate features like credit card processing, Constant Contact management, electronic signatures, fingerprint security, PDF documents, printers, and files.

These software development features can enhance your experience with building and using your custom CRM software.

Feasibility study. This should be performed before your software is created. A feasibility study helps your software developer understand your business’s needs when it comes to your business processes, IT infrastructure, and current software process and compatibility.

Frameworks. Frameworks are templates used to give your custom software solution a basic framework instead of building the program from scratch. Frameworks allow your software solution to be developed faster and save your business money on customized automation software.

Technical support. A developer that offers ongoing technical support about the use of your software will help you get the most out of your investment. Look for email, phone, and chat options, with additional literature accessible from your developer online.

 

Using FileMaker Pro to Run a Business is the Software Industry’s Best Kept Secret

February 16th, 2013

FileMaker Pro is an affordable software program that provides a streamlined platform through which businesses can manage and organize various types of information and communications. FileMaker Pro software is based on the customer relationship management (CRM) business model, which simply means that it is a type of business automation and synchronization rooted in sales.

FileMaker Pro is superior to other types of CRM software (programs used for streamlining business management) because its user-friendly interface is easy to adapt to and work with. The program itself is meant to be customized according to each business’s unique needs. It provides a framework for CRM system management, but comes with the ability to easily modify the platform for individual businesses.

The FileMaker Pro platform can be modified in several ways:

Removing non-applicable features. Other CRM software solutions come with a number of features that the developers assume a majority of businesses will need and use. Often, this leaves a business with needless and/or confusing extras that only seem to get in the way. But FileMaker Pro is customizable; any unwanted features can be removed.

Install useful plug-ins. A QuickBooks plug-in for FileMaker seamlessly integrates QuickBooks into the system, rather than keeping the application separate from the system. This gives appropriate users instant access and makes recordkeeping automatic.

Create plug-ins for unique features. This is where FileMaker Pro can really benefit innovative businesses. Software developers can create custom FileMaker plug-ins that meet a business’s unique needs. For example, the ability to gather electronic signatures is something more businesses are interested in as paperwork becomes a thing of the past. E-signature plug-ins provide the necessary programming and integrate signatures directly into the management database.

Custom apps for mobile devices. iPads and iPhones can run FileMaker software too. Custom-built apps are suited to the business’s needs, and to the practical needs of using a mobile device. Custom solutions can be created and implemented in a number of hours through the user-friendly interface.

Another major advantage provided by the flexibility of FileMaker Pro is the ability to communicate and interact effectively with other systems. Streamlining business communication and information keeps everyone who uses the system on the same page, regardless of how they get there. Whether employees access the system through Windows, Mac, iPad, or iPhone, they all view and interact with the system in the same way.

Why is FileMaker Such a Well-Kept Secret?

Even with a force as big as Apple behind FileMaker software development (FileMaker Inc. is a daughter company of Apple Inc.), it is still widely under-recognized.

Hundreds of CRM software developers stand a lot to lose if FileMaker begins to dominate the market the way some of Apple’s other products have. Some of these bigger developers put just as much money into marketing against FileMaker as they do into developing their own products.

Like many Apple products, the public may mistakenly assume that FileMaker Pro is designed for the elite. On the contrary, FileMaker is extremely affordable when it comes to professional business software. The cost of maintenance for CRM solutions is one of their chief criticisms, but FileMaker continues to save businesses money through the ability to be customized and modified by everyday users.

Another big reason FileMaker Pro hasn’t seen more widespread use is that that the software is simply misunderstood. Although it uses templates and has a user-friendly interface, the task of understanding, installing, modifying, and implementing a new database is a daunting task to most businesses.

Indeed, getting a software program like FileMaker up and running, customizing it to meet specific business needs, and training the sales force and other departments to use it is a task. But it is an investment. This upfront effort pays off exponentially when businesses begin to use it and streamline all of their tasks and information, ultimately saving a lot of time and money consistently in the long run.

Because FileMaker Pro is meant to be customized to each business’s needs, we use the program as a template for developing completely customized business management systems that streamline sales, accounting, recruiting, management, and customer relationships into one system that tracks and records all information, in addition to providing universal access on any device from any location with secure Internet access.

It’s hard to say precisely why; sometimes, it’s simply the best things that are kept under the radar!

Core4 – CRM Anywhere, Released for FileMaker Pro 12

July 13th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

San Diego, CA – July 13, 2012 – Productive Computing, Inc., a Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, today announced the release of Core4 CRM for FileMaker Pro. The Core4 CRM is a strikingly efficient customer relationship management system that offers organizations shared user access and control over critical business data. This cross-platform business management tool includes a full suite of integrated modules to help organizations manage their business and direct their work flow. From initial contact with a potential customer, through the sales and estimating process, and finally to managing and completing successful projects, the Core4 CRM will help you and your team produce efficient and organized results for your customers time and time again.

Core4 was built with a your data anywhere philosophy by providing users with access into the Core4 system in a number of convenient ways.  By installing the award winning FileMaker Pro 12 database engine, the Core4 delivers a feature rich user experience when being accessed via a desktop or laptop computer.  Using the free FileMaker Go App provides remote tablet access via an iPad.  Accessing Core4 CRM through a web browser provides additional access when users are on the go or have limited bandwidth.  Using techniques now available in FileMaker Pro 12, Core4 has been heavily optimized for access across a Wide Area Network and the web.

Coupled with Productive Computing’s new FileMaker Pro database hosting and SaaS service, Core4 is launched as the first full-featured FileMaker CRM solution offered under an optional Software as a Service subscription model. Customers have the choice to make a traditional one-time purchase to run it on their own server, on one of PCI’s hosting servers, or to purchase a subscription to the software “in the cloud” for a monthly per user fee.

Key Features:

•  Customer Relationship Management

•  Web Access and iPad Optimized

•  Sales Opportunities, Estimates, Orders, and Invoices

•  Remote Work Orders with Digital Signature Capture for Field Service Technicians

•  Correspondence History and Campaigns

•  Calendars and Activities (Tasks, E-mails, Faxes, Letters, Notes, Calls)

•  Purchase Orders

•  Payments and Credit Card Processing

•  Inventory Management with Kitting and Assemblies

•  Projects and Time Tracking

•  Dashboard

•  Reporting

•  Document Management and Storage

•  Integrates with Outlook, QuickBooks, Apple Address Book, iCal, and Credit Card Processing

•  100% Customizable

•  Flexible Deployment and Pricing Options

“We are tremendously excited about the new capabilities that FileMaker Pro 12 brings to our product as well as what our new pricing model offers to our customers.  The ability for a customer to begin using our software on the FileMaker Pro platform without an upfront cost will allow us to bring a new level of efficiency to organizations who may have otherwise not been able to afford it.  Helping businesses become more organized and profitable through the use of well designed, easy to use, easy to access software is our goal and the Core4 CRM ties all of that together in an incredibly valuable tool for our customers.  With the introduction of FileMaker 12 and FileMaker Inc.’s continuing commitment to developing the best database software for the desktop, the Web and mobile devices, our goal and more importantly our customer’s dreams are made a reality.”
– Marc Larochelle, CEO, Productive Computing, Inc.

Please visit http://www.Core4CRM.com to try a product demo, view the tutorial videos, or read the product documentation.

About Productive Computing, Inc.
Since 1996, Productive Computing, Inc. has been helping its customers become more efficient and profitable by implementing custom software solutions using FileMaker Pro. Utilizing FileMaker Pro as a rapid application development tool, their certified FileMaker developers can create custom applications that a business can run on their Windows or Macintosh desktop computers, in a web browser, on an iPad or iPhone or shared simultaneously on all of these platforms.

Productive Computing, Inc. also produces several off-the-shelf productivity solutions such as Core4 CRM, Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, Core2 Invoices, FM Work Orders, OrgPlanner and IT Asset Manager as well as a suite of FileMaker Pro plug-ins that allow FileMaker Pro to integrate with third party applications including Outlook, QuickBooks, Apple’s Address Book and iCal, PDF forms, credit card processing, digital signatures and biometric fingerprint scanners.

In addition to building custom and off-the-shelf FileMaker Pro solutions and plug-ins, Productive Computing, Inc. is a full service FileMaker Pro hosting company. FileMaker hosting services allow customers to host their own FileMaker Pro solutions on Productive Computing servers in the cloud instead of purchasing and supporting the necessary server infrastructure themselves. These same servers also provide the infrastructure for customers who would prefer to subscribe to Productive Computing’s Core4 CRM, Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, and FM Work Orders products under a SaaS (Software as a Service) pricing model.

Productive Computing, Inc. is one of only a few companies in the United States to have earned the highly respected Platinum level membership within the FileMaker Business Alliance and recently won the exclusive FileMaker Business Alliance Partner of the Year award.

Productive Computing, Inc.
950 Boardwalk, Suite 205
San Marcos, CA 92078
http://www.productivecomputing.com
info@productivecomputing.com
(760) 510-1200

Press Contacts:
Productive Computing, Inc.
Keith Larochelle
(760) 510-1200

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PCI Announces Software as a Service for its Flagship Applications!

May 24th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

San Diego, CA – May 24, 2012 – Productive Computing, Inc., a Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, is proud to announce the availability of Software as a Service (SaaS) for its most popular solutions running on the latest FileMaker Pro 12 database engine.

Our web-based SaaS will provide you remote access to our select FileMaker Pro Solutions for a low monthly fee and includes a free 30-day trial.

If You Already Own FileMaker Pro 12:
Core2 CRM: $10/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
Core2 CRM with Invoices: $20/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win, FM Books Connector, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
Core3 CRM: $35/month/user (includes subscription to Outlook for Win or Mac, FM Books Connector, Address Book and iCal plug-ins)
FM Work Orders: $25/month/user (includes subscription to FM Books Connector plug-in)

If You Need FileMaker Pro 12:
Purchase FileMaker Pro through PCI or…
Subscribe to FileMaker Pro for $15/month/user (requires at least 1 year SaaS commitment)

“We are tremendously excited about offering our products to the public for a one-time purchase or for a low monthly fee under this new subscription model. The ability for a customer to begin using our software on the award winning FileMaker Pro platform without an upfront cost will allow us to bring a new level of efficiency to organizations who would have otherwise not been able to afford it. Helping businesses become more organized and profitable through the use of well designed and easy to use software systems is the goal, and this additional pricing option is a win-win for both our customers and PCI.” — Marc Larochelle, CEO, Productive Computing, Inc.

For more information on Software as a Service please visit http://www.productivecomputing.com/FileMakerHosting.php

About Productive Computing, Inc.
Since 1996, Productive Computing, Inc. has been helping its customers become more efficient and profitable by implementing custom software solutions using FileMaker Pro. Utilizing FileMaker Pro as a rapid application development tool, their certified FileMaker developers can create custom applications that a business can run on their Windows or Macintosh desktop computers, in a web browser, on an iPad or iPhone or shared simultaneously on all of these platforms.

Productive Computing, Inc. also produces several off-the-shelf productivity solutions such as Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, Core2 Invoices, FM Work Orders, OrgPlanner and IT Asset Manager; as well as a suite of FileMaker Pro plug-ins that allow FileMaker Pro to integrate with third party applications including Outlook, QuickBooks, the Apple Address Book and iCal, PDF forms, credit card processing, digital signatures and biometric fingerprint scanners.

In addition to building custom and off-the-shelf FileMaker Pro solutions and plug-ins, Productive Computing, Inc. is a full service FileMaker Pro hosting company. FileMaker hosting services allow customers to host their own FileMaker Pro solutions on Productive Computing servers in the cloud instead of purchasing and supporting the necessary server infrastructure themselves. These same servers also provide the infrastructure for customers who would prefer to subscribe to Productive Computing’s Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM and FM Work Orders products under a SaaS (Software as a Service) pricing model.

Productive Computing, Inc. is one of only a few companies in the United States to have earned the highly respected Platinum level membership within the FileMaker Business Alliance and recently won the exclusive FileMaker Business Alliance Partner of the Year award.

Productive Computing, Inc.
950 Boardwalk, Suite 205
San Marcos, CA 92078
http://www.productivecomputing.com
info@productivecomputing.com
(760) 510-1200

Press Contacts:
Productive Computing, Inc.
Keith Larochelle
(760) 510-1200

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PCI Announces New Features and Enhancements to Core3 CRM for FileMaker Pro

April 24th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

San Diego, CA – April 24, 2012 – Productive Computing, Inc., a Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance, today announced the release of a new Core3 CRM version 3.1.1.0.

This new version has been greatly enhanced with the following features:

– Wide Area Network (WAN) optimization to provide a faster user experience for remote connections.

– Outlook Manipulator for Mac plug-in integration.

– Optional Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription.

– Miscellaneous minor updates to further enhance your Core3 experience (full list on Core3 web site).

An open source site license of Core3 CRM is priced at $2,500.00. This solution is also available as a subscription for $35.00/month per user/device.

Core3 CRM is native to and compatible with FileMaker Pro 11 or later. Please visit the http://www.Core3CRM.com to download a product demo, view the tutorial videos, or read the product documentation.

About Core3 CRM:
The Core3 CRM provides a completely open and customizable CRM platform that includes company and individual contacts, tasks, letters, faxes, call logging, e-mails, group calendaring, sales opportunities, estimates, orders, invoices, inventory, projects, time tracking, dashboards and reports. In addition, it is preprogrammed to work with third party applications such as Microsoft® Outlook, Intuit® QuickBooks, Apple® Address Book, iCal, PayPal® and Authorize.net® through the use of optional add-on FileMaker Pro plug-ins.

Built using the award winning FileMaker Pro cross-platform database engine, Core3 is one of the few CRM solutions that will work on both Apple and Windows computers so that everyone in your organization can access a single solution no matter what platform they are using.

About Productive Computing, Inc.
Since 1996, Productive Computing, Inc. has been helping its customers become more efficient and profitable by implementing custom software solutions using FileMaker Pro. Utilizing FileMaker Pro as a rapid application development tool, their certified FileMaker developers can create custom applications that a business can run on their Windows or Macintosh desktop computers, in a web browser, on an iPad or iPhone or shared simultaneously on all of these platforms.

Productive Computing, Inc. also produces several off-the-shelf productivity solutions such as Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM, Core2 Invoices, FM Work Orders, OrgPlanner and IT Asset Manager as well as a suite of FileMaker Pro plug-ins that allow FileMaker Pro to integrate with third party applications including Outlook, QuickBooks, Entourage, the Apple Address Book and iCal, PDF forms, credit card processing, digital signatures and biometric fingerprint scanners.

In addition to building custom and off-the-shelf FileMaker Pro solutions and plug-ins, Productive Computing, Inc. is a full service FileMaker Pro hosting company. FileMaker hosting services allow customers to host their own FileMaker Pro solutions on Productive Computing servers in the cloud instead of purchasing and supporting the necessary server infrastructure themselves. These same servers also provide the infrastructure for customers who would prefer to subscribe to Productive Computing’s Core3 CRM, Core2 CRM and FM Work Orders products under a SaaS (Software as a Service) pricing model.

Productive Computing, Inc. is one of only a few companies in the United States to have earned the highly respected Platinum level membership within the FileMaker Business Alliance and recently won the exclusive FileMaker Business Alliance Partner of the Year award.

Productive Computing, Inc.
950 Boardwalk, Suite 205
San Marcos, CA 92078
http://www.productivecomputing.com
info@productivecomputing.com
(760) 510-1200

Press Contacts:
Productive Computing, Inc.
Keith Larochelle
(760) 510-1200

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