Oracle applications will be out of date
It is no longer a big secret that automation processes have an increasing influence on workflows in sales. Numerous software providers advertise that they can do their sales better, faster and more efficiently. But what are the differences between the individual tools and which application is particularly suitable for your company?
The US market research and data analysis expert Gartner can help you to come closer to the answer to this question: For more than 15 years the company has been creating the so-called Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation, by comparing different software applications in the SFA area.
Today I would like to present the results of the current Magic Quadrant to you and make a comparison of the two CRM applications SAP Sales Cloud C4C and Oracle CX Sales Cloud. What are the strengths of the two platforms and what are their weaknesses?
What is the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation?
The Gartner Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation (SFA) evaluates 15 of the leading software providers in the field of sales automation based on two criteria:
- The criterion Completeness of Vision (in German, for example: “Holistic (corporate) vision”) indicates whether a company is promoting change processes within its market segment or merely reacting to changes in the market. When evaluating a company, criteria such as its business model, sales strategy and willingness to innovate are included.
- As Ability to execute In turn, Gartner summarizes factors such as the financial sustainability of a company, its reactivity to market changes and its sales channels.
On the basis of these two properties, Gartner compares the examined companies and their applications and assigns them to one of four categories:
- "Leader" (in German: "Vorreiter")
- Visionaries ("visionaries")
- Niche Players
The Gartner Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation evaluates and compares the SAP Sales Cloud and other SFA applications based on the two criteria Completeness on Vision and Ability to Execute. (Source: Source: https://www.gartner.com/en/research/methodologies/magic-quadrants-research)
SAP Sales Cloud: Still a pioneer in the field of sales automation
With its broad product range in the field of CRM and ERP tools, the software provider SAP already played a pioneering role in the field of sales automation in Gartner's last comparison of SFA tools. The current Magic Quadrant now shows that nothing has changed in this situation: The SAP Sales Cloud also scores well in the current comparison of CRM applications. In doing so, SAP benefits in particular from its pronounced enthusiasm for innovation, its profound understanding of the development of the software market and its ability to drive it forward. The company is not only characterized by its own Completeness of Vision, but also convinces with his Ability to execute.
SAP offers a comprehensive CRM suite, which also includes the CRM tool Sales Cloud belongs. Its three core functions firmly anchor the Sales Cloud in the SFA application segment:
- Sales automation
- Creation of configuration price quotes (CPQ)
- Administration of sales performance management processes (SPM)
Beyond the boundaries of its Sales Cloud, SAP also offers industry-specific and application-specific tools for retail, the service industry, the manufacturing sector, and wholesale. Thus, the software products from SAP have a large number of application areas in both the B2C and B2B sectors.
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Strengths and advantages of the SAP Sales Cloud
In three respects in particular, SAP can demonstrate its pioneering role with its Sales Cloud:
The SAP Sales Cloud is a native cloud application with several tenants (instances) that is hosted almost exclusively on servers managed by SAP itself. Only one data center in Russia is not operated by SAP itself - in this case the provider works with a partner company.
Extensive native functions
With its application, SAP covers all core and a large number of peripheral functions that contribute to sales automation. If you want to gradually increase the degree of automation of your sales, you do not have to use third-party applications. This can be a key benefit as tools provided by third parties are not always optimally compatible with your existing core application. Since all the tools and modules with which you can expand the SAP Sales Cloud are offered by SAP itself, compatibility problems of this kind are virtually impossible.
User access and test environment
SAP works according to a scalable licensing system. How many user accounts you can create for your system depends on the number of user licenses you purchase. In addition to the purchased licenses, the scope of delivery of the SAP Sales Cloud includes a. If you need additional user or test access, you can purchase them later if necessary.
Disadvantages and weaknesses of the SAP Sales Cloud
But SAP cannot convince its users in every respect. In the current comparison of the SFA tools, Gartner identified three primary weaknesses in the SAP Sales Cloud:
Unclear product roadmap and marketing strategy
Users complain that SAP is keeping a low profile with regard to the medium to long-term development of its Sales Cloud. Basically, the SAP Sales Cloud enjoys a positive external perception among the users surveyed by Gartner. However, users state that the software company is not able to clearly convey its product roadmap and marketing strategy to the outside world with a view to expanding and improving the application.
The decision has been made: a CRM system should be introduced. The question that companies then inevitably ask: Which CRM system should it be? Which one best suits the company's individual requirements? A look at the CRM market reveals: The 2 best-known and most used CRM systems are Salesforce and SAP CX (Customer Experience). However, many companies find it difficult to make a decision between these two systems.
Insufficient technical support
The introduction of a SAP application is a complex process. The users of the SAP Sales Cloud surveyed by Gartner complained that the technical support with which SAP supports its customers sometimes leaves a lot to be desired. This applies in particular to support during the system setup and during the initial usage phase. The users surveyed were also not impressed by the help and training resources for dealing with the Sales Cloud that the provider makes available to its customers.
Limited integration options
As already mentioned, SAP offers a variety of native functions for its Sales Cloud. In principle, this is a great advantage of the application - but there is also a disadvantage here: If you should consider integrating a third-party tool, the integration of this application into your existing SAP system can be difficult. For example, the user group surveyed by Gartner reports that it is difficult to integrate external reporting or document management tools into an existing SAP system.
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Oracle CX Sales Cloud: Pioneering role thanks to AI-supported forecasting
Similar to SAP, Gartner also identifies the Texan software manufacturer Oracle as one of the pioneers in the field of SFA applications. The heart of his CRM suite is the software-as-a-service application Oracle CX Sales Cloud. This is a CRM tool that can be used in the areas of B2B, B2C and indirect sales. In addition to the core CR functions, the scope of delivery of the Oracle CX Sales Cloud also includes a tool for managing SPM processes. Add-on applications, such as subscription management or CPQs, are also available, but not included as standard.
Due to its functions and structure, the Oracle CX Sales Cloud is aimed in particular at medium-sized and large companies with large sales and complex sales processes.
Oracle has overhauled its Sales Cloud significantly in the past year, including improving the forecasting and PRM functions as well as the AI-supported sales management. In the future, the company would also like to revise the user interface of its Sales Cloud and introduce new functions for online trading.
Advantages and strengths of the Oracle CX Sales Cloud
In the course of its investigation, Gartner's data analysis highlights three characteristics and functions of the Oracle CX Sales Cloud as particularly positive:
Clearly defined product strategy
In contrast to its competitor SAP, Oracle communicates the product strategy for its CRM tool openly to the outside world. Oracle is planning to gear its application more towards the automation of sales processes in the future. For this purpose, the Oracle CX Sales Cloud already has a large number of native functions and a large repertoire of add-ons that can be integrated into the SFA application.
Compared to many other providers of SFA applications, the Oracle Sales Cloud has a particularly large portfolio of highly specialized product solutions. Last year, for example, tools were added that were specially tailored to the requirements of the automotive, communications and consumer goods industries. As a user, you therefore have the option of adapting your SFA system individually to the requirements of your industry.
Oracle is increasingly relying on the use of AI-controlled predictive forecasting tools in its Sales Cloud. Predictive forecasting is an extension of classic forecasting, in the course of which new causal relationships are determined with the help of data. These enrich the existing data set and thus ensure a better forecast output. The predictive forecast can be further improved with every further connection between data that is uncovered. Oracle's AI-driven predictive forecasting application uses data from Enterprise Research Planning: It links data from incoming orders, invoices and order items with information about outstanding transactions.
Disadvantages and weaknesses of the Oracle CX Sales Cloud
In a comparison of the SFA applications, Oracle CX Sales Cloud scores particularly well with regard to planned and already integrated software functions. However, there are also some features that Gartner surveyed users rated as needing improvement:
Poor customer service and technical support
The majority of the users surveyed by the market research institute rank Oracle well below its competitors in terms of the quality of customer service and technical support.
As already mentioned, Oracle plans to update the user interface of its Sales Cloud. This step is urgently needed because users find the current interface confusing and out of date. For example, the handling of administrative activities, such as the account approval in the course of the region approval, can sometimes be extremely tedious.
Inadequate customer advice
There is also room for improvement for Oracle with regard to the quality of its consulting services. In the survey carried out by Gartner, Oracle scores below average here compared to other companies classified as "Leader".
SAP Sales Cloud and Oracle CX Sales Cloud: Two pioneers in the field of SFA applications
The comparison of the Sales Clouds from SAP and Oracle shows: Both SFA applications shine with extensive native functions and a high degree of modifiability. Both applications can therefore be tailored precisely to the requirements of your company. But while the Oracle CX Sales Cloud enjoys the trust of its users thanks to its clearly defined product strategy, SAP is keeping a low profile in this regard. The SAP Sales Cloud, on the other hand, stands out with its high level of user-friendliness. Due to its outdated user interface, there is an urgent need to catch up for the Oracle CX Sales Cloud.
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But which of the two applications is better suited for your sales? I would be happy to advise you.
Please leave us your name and contact details. Then we will contact you.
Before that, Cesljar
My name is Davor Cesljar and I am an expert on CRM and the digitization of the customer experience. As the department head of Customer First, I advise companies - from start-ups to corporations - strategically in this area and combine my technical expertise in the area of CX with individual customer requirements.
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