The Association for the Blind of Western Australia (WA Blind) has successfully implemented a health CRM system that is a 95 per cent fit without customising, according to the association's technology services manager David Gribble.
WA Blind's software infrastructure consists of a Citrix client/server environment and relational databases for financials and marketing. Windows 2000 is the standard server operating environment.
The association implemented Jade Co-ordinated Care (Jade Care), a dedicated health CRM application written by Jade Software.
"We needed a new client management system which would result in a lower, total cost or ownership than our previous CRM systems," Gribble said. "With Jade Care we now have a 95 per cent fit to our business out-of-the-box. Although possible, we couldn't afford to get Jade to customise it to 100 per cent of our requirements; however, the missing 5 per cent is a level of detail we can do without."
The implementation was part of a wider IT upgrade to the tune of $630,000 which was jointly funded by Lotteries West.
"Being a non-profit organisation we are always looking to minimise operating costs," Gribble said. "Jade Care is stable, easy to administer, integrates with other software, and the fact that it has its own data management system eliminates the need for an external database."
Gribble said the fact that both Jade Care and Greentree - the financial application - are written in Jade was irrelevant.
"We evaluated a number of off-the-shelf CRM products but they would have required extensive customisation," he said. "Jade Care was just the most cost effective and it scales well as we now have more than 50,000 records in both systems."
When asked if any thought was given to developing their own in house Gribble said WA Blind had been through the "progression of CRM".
"In the past we've built our own applications which is a long and costly process," he said. "Jade Care best meets our needs and the only drawback is its reporting capabilities which are fairly rudimentary at this stage. Since we purchased Jade Care, Jade has added a reporting module."