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Acknowledgments

Acknowledgments

First, I want to thank John Gravely for his many contributions as coauthor. Without his network of Microsoft partners and the many contacts he has made among users and installers of Microsoft CRM, this book would not have been possible. I also owe a debt of gratitude to Jeremie Desautels, who reviewed and tested the technical aspects of the book, making sure our examples were not only correct, but also understandable.

The original idea for this book came from Angelina Ward of Que Publishing, and thanks go to her for the vision it took to recognize the opportunity that Microsoft CRM represents for small- and mid-sized companies, and the need for a book like this to help them implement the product. I also want to thank my agent, Danielle Jatlow, of Waterside Literary Agency, for her ongoing support with the business side of publishing.

Finally, thanks go to the clients, past and present, who have shared with me their requirements, experiences, and stories about managing customer relationships with automated systems. Without you, as the saying goes, there is no story.

—Laura Brown
lbrown@systeminnovations.net
www.systeminnovations.net

Nearly three years ago Jeremie Desautels (c360 CTO and cofounder) and I began hearing rumors that Microsoft was on the verge of entering the CRM market. It didn't take much to figure out that Microsoft's entrance into CRM was going to have a tremendous impact. What has been surprising however, is the incredible speed and tenacity with which this saga continues to unfold. As of this writing (early May 2003) Microsoft claims to have over 400 CRM customers with additional ones signing on daily. It has become routine to hear about multi-hundred user deals and even the occasional 1,000-plus user deal. In addition, over 100 Microsoft CRM horizontal and vertical solutions are currently in development by Microsoft partners. The community of customers and partners is eagerly demanding more features and increased scalability and Microsoft and its partners are listening.

The tremendous pace of Microsoft CRM has made the development of this book both interesting and challenging. As with any major project, there are many more people to thank than those whose names appear in bold print. First and foremost, I want to thank my wife Kim for putting up with the many long nights and weekends of research and writing that went into this. She has redefined what it means to be supportive in this as well as all of my many ventures.

Neither the book nor c360 would exist without the tremendous contribution of Jeremie Desautels, our Technical Editor and c360's CTO and cofounder. Quite simply: You da man. Jeremie and I are both very grateful to Laura Brown, Danielle Jatlow (Waterside Productions), and Angelina Ward and the rest of her team at Que for giving us the opportunity to contribute to this book.

The book has benefited tremendously from the group of content contributors who either coauthored or reviewed areas of content. Special thanks go out to Bill Patterson (Solonis), Frank Torres (Origin One), Tony Clayton (Acetta), John Moody (Dynamic Methods), and Lynn Harrington and Lisa Marino (Scribe Software).

As you can probably imagine, a tremendous amount of help, favors, and information came from the extremely hard working folks at Microsoft and Microsoft Business Solutions. Our thanks go out to Jen Strunc, Kate Kuchera, Jan Shanahan, Mike Bishoff, Tom Pertzborn, Paul Ledbetter, Heather Combe (bowling queen), David Thacher, Alex Simons, Ken Kranseler, Todd Baana, Ben Syltie, Greg Gawryluk, Nick 'Noah' Johnson, Cory Johnson, Kristen Paulson, Steve Schumacher, John Messelt, Chad Rexin, Dana Martens, Caroline Hinton, and Ryan Trudeau. We appreciate all the assistance and support you have provided.

Finally, I want to thank Randy Astle for the information gleaned as he and Jeremie Desautels developed SearchPac, the world's first Microsoft CRM add-on. My thanks also go out to Lance James (Complete Financial Solutions) for the many helpful tips he provided as he wandered through his company's installation of Microsoft CRM.

As our work around Microsoft CRM continues to evolve, I encourage the readers of this book to contact me with any feedback you might have. I can be reached at John.Gravely@c360.com. In addition, we will be providing ongoing information about Microsoft CRM through our newsletter available at www.c360.com.

Sincerely,

John Gravely

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