Sunday, January 10, 2010

ConnectWise - Taking the Plunge

Okay, after a little more than a year on CommitCRM as our main CRM/PSA package, I've taken the plunge and bought ConnectWise.

CW was never really considered when I was looking at CommitCRM and other packages last year - it was just too much (My current 4 user license with my features that I want is $15k USD). CommitCRM was just $3k, and it did everything that I needed last year.

CommitCRM is still a great little package - but that's just it - it's a little package. It will continue to grow as it's developed, but I need more (like project management) and I need it now, so it's time to switch.

I was considering TigerPaw for a while, and almost bought - but CW has more abilities that I needed - and you pay for them. TigerPaw was cheaper by nearly half.

In the end, the ability to work efficiently is worth more to me than holding on to the $$. We can make so much more if we have focused and properly utilized staff.

It's taking some getting used to - CommitCRM is a small, tight, well written program. It doesn't require much in the way of power to run, and it's client auto-installs when you run - All very easy.

ConnectWise is the exact opposite - It's a full Microsoft .NET development program - Requiring full MS SQL server, a dedicated Windows server, and the client runs via a .NET install (means you better have some workstation power).

I added a $14k Dell server to my CW cost, so I'm now up to nearly $30k for this package. You need a honking dedicated server, because they won't let you run it on anything else.

I'll write more about ConnectWise as I learn - I'm still in the initial training and getting used to the program - It's very complex, and it's taken me nearly a week to get to the stage where I can dribble out an invoice or two.