Kind of old news (it’s from January last year) but BDO Seidman has implemented commercial open source software to manage their nationwide network of member firms. Open source software is software whose underlying source code is openly available and is usually licensed under the GNU GPL.
What I like about open source is that the software is generally more stable and lightweight than closed-source software. This is due to the open nature of the code, which allows anyone to submit bug fixes or more efficient code.
Firefox, for example, is much more stable and reliable than Internet Explorer, and allows the user much greater control of the browsing experience. So it comes as no surprise that BDO Seidman chose SugarCRM for its adaptability to their specific needs.
[BDO] had never dealt with SugarCRM before, but she said that the lead project manager for the migration project was familiar with open source software. Helping matters was the fact that BDO Seidman’s IT team was very open to the SugarCRM application and regularly volunteered time and effort to work closely with the vendor’s own team when it came time to integrate the product into the environment.
This is where open source can be used more effectively within organizations with specific needs. Getting people from both the customer and supplier to work together to make sure the software fits the organization like a glove.
I wonder whether they would have considered open source if the lead project manager wasn’t already familiar with it. There is still a lot of FUD out there when it comes to open source, so it will take someone like the project manager did at BDO to take the reins and get everyone on board.
As well, BDO looked at other options before deciding to use open source. They even considered going with Microsoft CRM (now Dynamics CRM), but in the end chose something a little sweeter.