IT & utilities sector setting the pace in CRM use

  • Manufacturing sector registers highest increase
  • CRM solutions increasingly hosted and in the cloud

A CRM solution enables a company to serve its customers faster and in a more targeted manner. A market analysis by market intelligence specialist Smart Profile, in which 3,774 Belgian companies with more than fifty employees were questioned, shows that the IT & utilities sector is the front runner, as 51% of the companies have a CRM package.

Smart Profile noted the strongest increase in the manufacturing sector with an increase of 16% compared with 2010. When all sectors are considered, 30% of companies on average use a CRM solution. The government and health sectors score moderately, but the situation calls for some nuance. More specifically, other systems are used in both sectors, which Smart Profile does not register officially as CRM systems: student monitoring systems, student administration systems or citizen administration systems.

Belgian companies still show more confidence in the cloud and in external parties to host their CRM solution. Smart Profile has noted a 14% increase for the cloud since 2012 (from 10% to 24%), and 11% for hosting (from 7% to 18%). Since 2014, we see that most companies have a preference for a remote CRM solution, which still stands at 37%. A sharp decline was noted in CRM solutions on site, from 49% in 2012 to 32% in 2018. On the other hand, this variant still takes second place.

The top 3 CRM vendors are SAP (47%), Microsoft (23%) and (20%). Whereas custom-built solutions accounted for 27.5% of the market in 2018, today this figure is only 9.1%, ranking number four nonetheless.  These four vendors play the leading role in various market segments, although the sharing of the cake differs per segment. Thus, Microsoft ranks first among public companies (32%) and SMEs (30%), but second among national companies (24%) and third among multinationals (16%). SAP ranks first among multinational (56%) and national (53%) companies, but falls to third among public companies, with Oracle taking the second place (27%).