New Industry Report Reveals Low Levels of Core Business System Integration

Manchester, N.H. - June 4, 2013 - Key business and IT shifts are changing how businesses prioritize customer data integration. Customer data integration has become a core business issue as organizations struggle to attain the ideal of the connected enterprise and drive business value from IT investments while managing increasingly complex IT environments. Today, Scribe Software, an established global provider of solutions that easily bring customer data anywhere it is needed, unveiled its annual "State of Customer Data Integration 2013" survey, in which 920 global respondents shared their top business/customer priorities and insights about their data integration efforts. Download the report in its entirety here.

"Businesses are struggling to reach the connected enterprise nirvana despite their focus on the importance of core business system integration," noted Lou Guercia, CEO of Scribe. "With the continued move to cloud and complex hybrid environments, the lack of integration between these systems is becoming clearer and significantly slowing business value."

Shifting Role of the CMO and CIO - Half of Budget Now Outside of IT
Supporting industry analyst predictions that CMOs will have an increasing stake in IT budget decisions in the years ahead, enterprise-level respondents reported almost half of budget ownership for core business systems now resides outside of IT. Although IT continues to own a sizeable portion of the budget, sales, operations and marketing departments together are responsible for 49 percent of planned systems investments in the enterprise in 2013. In addition, while almost half of business respondents (44 percent) plan to invest more in their business systems in 2013, the majority (60 percent) plan to take a cautious approach - increasing their customer-facing systems investment by no more than 20% compared to 2012.

Pervasiveness of Cloud and Hybrid Environments
Cloud has penetrated all core business systems with CRM leading the way - 26 percent of businesses report a pure cloud environment for CRM, while ERP and BI systems are still predominantly on-premise (with only six percent and five percent respectively reporting cloud adoption). In addition, the growing importance of hybrid environment support for customer data is clear as 47 percent of businesses and 73 percent of third-party systems integrators point to hybrid environment support as either a top priority or important for their CRM strategy. 

Gap Between Importance of Customer and Current Data Integration Maturity
Businesses are clear in their priorities - they need to sell more, but not at the expense of customer satisfaction. While it is no surprise that the majority of businesses (73 percent) and systems integrators (80 percent) report revenue growth as a top priority, they are also quick to note increased customer satisfaction and increased revenue by customer as top priorities.

The importance of CRM and core business system integration to support customer-focused business growth is clear. In fact, businesses report measuring the success of their CRM data integration initiatives based on CRM satisfaction (45 percent), complete customer view (43 percent) and CRM system adoption (41 percent). 

However, with the majority of respondents noting integration between CRM and business intelligence (74 percent), CRM and customer support systems (73 percent), and CRM and marketing automation (71 percent) as a top priority, only 16 percent of business respondents report full integration among their various business systems. When compared to 15 percent reporting full integration in 2012, it is evident that organizations still have a long way to go to fully integrate customer data across core business systems. While only 10 percent report a complete lack of integration, partial integration is still the norm.

Additional Findings:

  • Data Accuracy and Consistency Key to CRM Systems Value: Businesses expect their CRM systems to have the ability to share data among key departments, and companies prioritize the value of CRM data integration in terms of its ability to drive accuracy and consistency of customer information
  • CRM Going Mobile: The majority of systems integrators (84 percent) and businesses (71 percent) rate Mobile CRM as either important or top priority for their CRM strategy in 2013
  • Financial Data Still Siloed: The lowest levels of reported between-systems integration are between CRM and ERP (13 percent) and CRM and Social (10 percent)
  • Widespread Do-It-Yourself Integration on the Decline: Custom code continues to be the way the majority (48 percent) of businesses report integrating their systems - but that is a significant drop from 2012 when 59 percent reported doing so
  • No Formal Process for Evaluating Integration: Most businesses (64 percent) still do not have a formal process for evaluating their CRM data integration progress, yet failure to integrate CRM with other critical business systems is driving 18 percent of respondents to switch to a new system in 2013


"Given the clear focus on the customer, businesses need to make comprehensive integration of customer data across all business systems a top priority in 2013," added Mark Sheridan, Vice President, Business Development, Marketo. "By connecting customer data across the enterprise, businesses will be able to empower line-of-business users with ready access to smart data - data that offers actionable business insights and drives solid decisions across the organization to better service customers and drive revenue."

Register today to join a live webinar on June 11, 2013, at 11 a.m. ET to get an in-depth look at the full survey findings and participate in an interactive Q&A with industry experts. A recording will be made available.

This online survey was conducted in March 2013 by Scribe with leading software providers and consultants (i.e., Marketo, Znode, ON24, Trillium, PowerObjects, Ledgeview and Slalom Consulting) fielding the survey among their communities. More than 920 technical professionals, business leaders, systems integrators, VARs and partners participated in "The State of Customer Data Integration 2013" report. Respondents came from a cross-section of industries and from more than 50 countries, representing all regions of the world. Various company sizes and levels of core business systems adoption and usage were represented. Respondents were comprised of C-level executives, as well as business analysts and IT professionals, who manage and support systems implementation and data integration function within their organizations. A comprehensive breakdown of respondents by industry, company size, geographic location, etc. can be found in the full report.

About Scribe Software
is an established global provider of solutions that easily bring customer data anywhere it is needed - regardless of IT infrastructure. Scribe's award-winning products help 12,000 customers and 1,000 partners use customer data - cloud-based, on-premise or a mix - to increase revenue, provide superior service, and create business value faster. Its easy-to-use, enterprise-ready solutions are backed by extensive support options and training, and service customers across a wide array of industries including financial services, life sciences, manufacturing, and media and entertainment companies.

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