The rise of CRM in Central European markets

500 IT professionals gathered this September at Palaç Zofin in Prague, Czech Republic for Salesforce Essentials where it was announced that a “Customer Revolution” was underway in the Czech market.

Michel Mayor and Dalibor Dymak, CRM & Czech Market Experts at blue-infinity attended the conference and shared their thoughts on what this event represents for CRM in Central European markets.

Opportunities  

The move to the Cloud

While cloud technologies have been around for a while, many Czech students, universities and companies have been reluctant to make the move to the cloud. As an indisputable leader of the SaaS world, Salesforce is uniquely positioned to drive that revolution and transform the industry in the Czech market.

Favourable market structures

The technology industry in Czech Republic has been growing rapidly. Service centres and manufacturing companies need to stay connected to this rapidly evolving environment. Many service providers and parts manufacturers work for large companies that integrate market structures. The demand for seamless integration is therefore very strong and Salesforce has a compelling value proposition. There are large local players like PPF, J&T, and CEZ that have a wider network of companies from start-ups to old fashioned companies, and have financial capabilities to operate not only in the Czech Republic but internationally.

Financials

Salesforce has long focused on successful mature markets to sustain its two digit growth but can this approach be sustained on the long-term? No one knows, but the choice of moving to unknown markets will certainly allow the CRM giant to rapidly achieve wins and gain market share.

Limitations

IT professional recruitment

The Czech market faces an unemployment rate around 5%; in the IT Technology sector it is close to 0%. The demand for qualified professionals has increased as many western European companies have decided to open their business centre activities in the country.

Company size & internal governance

Most of the Central European markets are structured in a fairly similar way. They are specialised in manufacturing industries and mostly composed of mid-sized local companies with revenues that rarely allow for premium cloud solutions such as the ones offered by Salesforce. Large companies that are present in Czech Republic are very often governed by their regional HQ; leaving relatively limited freedom in terms of “local IT creativity.”

A Microsoft driven nation

The CRM market place consists of home-made solutions that are developed on demand or through the use of MS Dynamics solutions. Some customers are stuck in the past and still use MS Excel and Outlook to meet their CRM requirements.

Salesforce’s announcement is a wise and strategic decision. Its success will depend on its ability to adjust its traditional selling model to the Czech market reality. At blue-infinity, we are delighted to be a Salesforce partner and will be looking forward to leveraging our Czech experts as well as helping Czech customers implement their new CRM solution.

Pictured: Palaç Zofin in Prague

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About the author

Michel Mayor

Passionate about Marketing & Sales, I particularly enjoy tackling the complexity of customer-facing processes and always thrive to enhance customer’s experience. Creative yet analytical, my preference goes to projects & roles addressing unsolved challenges that require out-of-the-box ideas & cross-functional synergies.