New player in South African CRM implementation game

Von Theo Boshoff

ImplementIT SA Pty. Ltd., a Siebel Systems Inc. integration company established in 2000, has recently decided to expand its business model and move into the space of implementing, integrating and providing support for AccPac CRM and Witness - an agent monitoring and management system from the UK - within the SME market.

Company MD, Perry Velalis, says that after unsuccessfully partnering with bigger organizations, such as Accenture Ltd., to offer its Siebel implementation services, "ImplementIT went at it alone, and sold itself and its services into the Tier-one companies. It also started implementing and maintaining its own projects."

He says that the company has now decided to take its experience in implementing large-scale Siebel CRM systems and scale it down and package it for the SME market.

"We want to be playing in the front-office CRM arena, and not in the larger back-office space, where we can focus on application development. We decided that, for the SME front-office, the AccPac CRM product is currently the best way to bring solutions to the smaller players and lower end of the market."

Continues Velalis: "AccPac"s reseller community is not generally CRM-focused, being more concerned with back-office implementation. This is where ImplementIT wants to be different, and provide solutions and support for the front end of the business."

It is the company"s belief that, in comparison to Siebel CRM functionality, AccPac CRM is a very cost-effective, value-added implementation that has been adapted for smaller institutions.

Company director, Nicolas Zentelis, says: "Our expertise in services delivery in Tier-one organizations, together with the functionality of the AccPac CRM and Witness products, and the integration of these products, allows us to provide a complete solution to companies. We do not want to consult, but can, and, through Witness, can assist on the ?people side" of business, dealing with balanced scorecard performance management."

According to the company, AccPac says ImplementIT is currently the only AccPac specialist in SA, and ImplementIT says it is one of only two companies supporting the Witness application.

Zentalis says the company strongly believes in giving customers leverage and ?gearing", by placing a small team at the customer"s side to allow it to build its own team and capacity around the system, at not too much extra cost. "We will translate and configure products to companies" specific needs."

Velalis notes that the process is going to be approached slowly and Zentalis agrees, saying that the company wants to first create one or two reference sites before it starts with a huge marketing campaign.

Velalis is, however, confident of growth, and believes that ImplementIT will have signed three deals by Q1 next year. The company is currently in the final stages of signing its first deal, which Zentalis describes as being on the client MD"s desk for a signature.