BCM 2007: Get it? Good question.

BCM 2007: Get it? Good question.

Microsoft is trying hard to compete in the CRM (contact/customer relationship management) market. Its entry-level product, designed to compete with software such as ACT! and GoldMine, is the Business Contact Manager add-on for Outlook. I’ll probably have more to say about the actual features and benefits of this software later. This post serves only to point out a big ball-drop on Microsoft’s part with regard to the marketing and licensing of the product.

Office 2007, which is just now hitting the market, is available in about as many different varieties as Starbucks coffee. Unfortunately, Microsoft is making it very difficult for folks like me to figure out which variety to recommend to small businesses that might want Business Contact Manager. Take a look at this product grid. You’ll notice that Business Contact Manager is not included in the two suites at the upper end of the spectrum: Professional Plus and Enterprise.

But now read this language from Microsoft’s December 2006 Product List (emphasis added):

Microsoft Office 2007 Professional Plus
A License for Microsoft Office 2007 Professional Plus consists of the following: Microsoft Access 2007, Microsoft Office Communicator 2007, Microsoft Excel 2007, Microsoft InfoPath 2007, Microsoft Outlook 2007, Microsoft Outlook 2007 with Microsoft Business Contact manager, Microsoft PowerPoint 2007, Microsoft Publisher 2007, Microsoft Word 2007, Microsoft Publisher 2007, Microsoft InfoPath 2007, Microsoft Office Communicator 2005.

Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise
A License for Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise consists of the following: Microsoft Office Access 2007, Microsoft Office Communicator 2007, Microsoft Office Excel 2007, Microsoft Office Groove 2007, Microsoft Office InfoPath 2007, Microsoft OneNote 2007, Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 with Microsoft Business Contact manager, Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007, Microsoft Office Publisher 2007, Microsoft Office Word 2007.

I believe that the Product List carries more legal authority than any marketing document that might appear on a Microsoft web site, so I think that businesses who own one of these two suites will be safe in installing BCM. If I get further clarification from MS, I’ll let you know.

Meanwhile, stay tuned for another post soon about the real problem with the Office 2007 suites for small businesses.

Posted in All, BCM, MS Licensing, Office 2007, Software, Technology on Dec 12th, 2006, 11:22 am by David Schrag   

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