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ISM’s Software Lab: The Home of Top 15 CRM Software Awards

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Impartial testing with strenuous selection criteria sets the standard since 1990.

By John Chan, ISM’s Software Lab Director

As the ISM Software Lab Director, the Lab staff and I have reviewed numerous CRM applications to examine the depth and comprehensiveness of their functionality. Each software review is based on an objective and unbiased methodology to ensure that the CRM vendor demonstrates their functionality for each individual criterion used to determine the results of the ISM CRM software functionality assessment.

Out of the dozens of CRM software applications that are reviewed ISM selects a group of Top 15 CRM software applications in the Enterprise and Small-to Mid-Sized Market (SMB) based on a rating of 208 selection criteria, including 99 business functions, 48 technical features, 34 implementation capabilities, 10 real time criteria and 17 user-support features. With no ownership in or by a vendor, ISM’s software analysis is 100 percent unbiased. The ISM Top 15 CRM Software Awards will next be announced in the Spring of 2015.

In 1999, I joined ISM as the Software Lab Director and became responsible for the oversight of the software testing. The awards were the creation of ISM’s founder and president, Barton Goldenberg, who was frustrated with so many software packages being rated based on a fee paid to the “tester”. Barton and the staff were determined to make both the testing and the awards “hold water”. Although we met with some vendor resistance, it wasn’t long before the industry as a whole realized the importance of both unbiased testing and an “apples-to-apples” cross comparison of specific CRM functionality.

Many organizations also use ISM’s impartial CRM software reviews to assist them in selecting the appropriate CRM software application for their needs. In addition, ISM helps many organizations with their CRM initiatives that includes using the CRM software reviews to determine which applications are the viable candidates for implementation. These CRM vendor candidates are then invited by organizational management to participate in the CRM software selection process.

The Top 15 CRM Software Award reviews, which include recent software updates where appropriate, are available for purchase on ISM’s website. This summer, ISM is offering a 30% discount on all CRM reviews, including our prestigious publication: The Guide to Mobile and Social CRM. We are proud of our CRM software reviews and awards, and it is a “distinction” we plan to keep.