Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Acorel CRM App

This weeks blog is about the Acorel CRM app.
Acorel developed this app to be a simple yet powerful tool for Sales Reps on the road to work with SAP CRM on their iPhone or iPad while visiting customers without having to access the CRM system via the webclient.

The app allows users to utilize the SAP CRM system when they need it the most. Anytime, Anywhere.

This one single application allows sales reps to actually get benefit of their SAP CRM. They will love it!

This blog describes the functionality of the app and the technology behind it. Finally, let's look at the new iOS 7 version of the app.

  






 

CRM App Functionality


Home Screen

The first entry point of the CRM App is the home screen. The home screen was designed to give the user as much realtime info as possible. It displays the users schedule as well as a list of recent accounts and contacts. By swiping to the right on the home screen (or clicking the icon in the top left), a menu appears were the user can navigate to the different sections of the app.




Searching for and displaying Accounts

First of all, the app offers the user the option to search for accounts in the CRM system. By selecting one of the results, the account details screen is shown displaying
  • Account info & the account address.
  • Contacts linked to the account
  • Recent activities for the selected account.





Searching for and displaying Contacts

Much like searching for accounts, the user can also search for contacts in the CRM system. From the contact details screen, the user can call or email the selected contact. Account details are also displayed, as well as a list of activities that this particular contact is involved in. From a menu that can be opened by tapping an icon in the top right corner, the user has the ability to edit the contact or add it to his favorites.




Creating and updating Contacts

From the contact details screen, the user has the option to navigate to the edit contact screen and modify contact details and save them to the backend. From different other sections in the app (i.e. account details and home screen), the user also has the option to create new contacts.



Viewing, creating and updating activities

Activities can be accessed form the home screen or from a separate activities screen. From the home screen, by clicking on the today or tomorrow sections, a more graphical schedule is shown. From there users can select an activity and edit / complete it.




Key functions

The following list are the most useful functions in the app in addition to basic CRM functionality.

 

Phone integration 

An account or contact can be directly called from within the app. After the call is made, the app automatically proposes to create an "Outgoing Call" activity for the contact the user called.


Email integration

Contacts can be emailed directly from within the app. Just like the functionality described above, the app recognises when the email was successfully sent and proposes to create an "Outgoing Email" activity for the contact that the email was sent to.


Schedule integration

The home view of the CRM App displays your schedule for today and tomorrow. This schedule has two sources: The CRM system (activities planned for today and tomorrow) and the users own personal schedule that he or she has on their phone already. This way the user has a clear way to see what he or she has planned for today and tomorrow. CRM related activities, work related activities and their personal schedule as well.

Recent accounts & contacts

While searching and displaying for accounts and contacts, the app automatically tracks a list of the most recent ones and displays them in a list on the app's home screen so that they can accessed quickly.

Favourites

While recent accounts & contacts are maintained automatically, a feature to maintain favourites was also added. The list of favourites can be accessed from the home view as well. By offering the user to maintain favourites, the user has control over which accounts and contacts are the ones they want to be in their own personal list.

Maps integration

Ofcourse, Maps integration was also added. Nothing special and revolutionary here. Based on the address of the Account, a geolocation is found and displayed on the map.

Technology


Front-End

As mentioned in the intro, the Acorel CRM App is a native iOS app that runs on iPhone and iPad. We are currently developing HTML5/SAPUI5, Windows Phone/8 and Android variants of this app based on the same backend technology.

Back-End

The connection(s) to the back-end were made by using SAP Netweaver Gateway. As you might already know, the SAP Netweaver Gateway is a very powerful way to build lightweight services to connect to your SAP systems. The Gateway can be installed as an add-on (for example on a SAP CRM System) or as a seperate (ABAP) system in a landscape. By installing it as a separate system, multiple back-end systems (i.e. CRM, SRM, ECC etc.) can be accessed with one central gateway system.

iOS 7

Because of the fact that the app is a native iOS app, we have the opportunity to stay close to the rest of the look and feel and user experience of the system running on the device. This way, the use of the app is very intuitive for the user. As you probably know, iOS 7 was just launched a couple of weeks ago. We updated our app for iOS 7 as well, below are some example screenshots of the iOS 6 vs iOS 7 version of the Acorel CRM App.


Home Screen




 

Account Details

 


Contact details 


More Info

For more information about the Acorel CRM App, you can contact:
Taco Schallenberg
+316 1445 5743
taco.schallenberg@acorel.nl

Arjan Nieuwenhuizen
+316 3449 0775
arjan.nieuwenhuizen@acorel.nl

or place your comment below.

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