DAASI International brings Crust to Univention Corporate Server

Cork, 22 January 2020

We’re excited to announce that Crust, the open source Low Code, CRM and Service Automation platform is now available on the Univention Corporate Server (UCS) via the Univention App Center.

UCS, created by Univention, provides companies with a complete solution for the administration of IT infrastructures, applications, resources and users. With the addition of Crust in the Univention App Center, UCS users can easily add the entire Crust suite to their UCS instances. This includes:

Additionally, DAASI International, a German and European leader in Open Source Identity and Access Management has seamlessly integrated their didmos Single Sign-On offering with the advanced UCS Management system. DAASI International will be responsible for distributing the Crust platform on UCS and supporting all Crust customers.
 

We are delighted to welcome the Crust platform to our App Center familysays Nico Gulden, Product Manager Apps at Univention.We’re always on the look out for open source alternatives to major proprietary vendors that increase the options of choice for our users on their way to Digital Sovereignty.

As not just a partner of, but also an investor in Crust Technology, releasing the platform on Univention is a notable step for usadds Peter Gietz, CEO of DAASI International.It is becoming increasingly important that major applications treat the subject of identity as key to their success. Being available on UCS opens doors to markets that appreciate both customer and digital sovereignty by default.

Crust is very excited about this launchsays Niall McCarthy, CEO of Crust Technology.Univention has been a leader in providing self-hosted technology in Germany and further afield for a number of years. A key strategic goal for Crust is to build and evolve to satisfy the growing and ever-more complex requirements of enterprise customers who demand feature sets which match traditional cloud providers while protecting their digital sovereignty.

How to get Crust on Univention Corporate Server?

A free Crust trial can easily be installed via the Univention App Center inside UCS. If you don’t have UCS yet, you can visit https://www.univention.com/downloads/ to download it. A Crust subscription, starting at 24 euro per user per month (discounts are available), is needed after the free trial. For more information, please contact Crust at www.crust.tech/contact

About Crust

Crust Technology Ltd, headquartered in Ireland, is the driving force behind the open-source Unified Work platform Crust, providing a flexible, self-hosted platform for your organisation to work and communicate internally while engaging with its customers, suppliers, partners and other third parties externally. Its integrated approach to identity, messaging and business logic delivers a simple-to-use yet extensible means for managing users and the applications they require every day, whether in the cloud, behind the firewall or a hybrid of the two. For more information, visit www.crust.tech or follow @Crusttech on Twitter.

About DAASI International:

DAASI International is an expert in federated Identity and Access Management based on open source. Since its founding in 2000, the IT service provider from Tübingen, Germany deals with identity management, access control and directory service technologies for universities, public authorities and companies. In addition, DAASI International is actively involved in the field of Digital Humanities and participates in national and international research projects, including the digital research infrastructure DARIAH-DE. DAASI International’s range of services covers consulting, support, hosting, and software development.

About Univention:

Univention GmbH is a leading European manufacturer of open source products for the operation and management of IT infrastructure, headquartered in Bremen. Univention Corporate Server (UCS) can be used as a classic server solution in the cloud or in hybrid scenarios. UCS is an economical alternative to Microsoft server solutions and includes comprehensive Active Directory capabilities and an App Center that integrates and operates more than 90 enterprise solutions into existing IT environments.

Companies are replacing Salesforce with Crust and Corteza – with use cases scaling to hundreds of thousands of users. Here’s why:

Crust Technology strives for feature-by-feature equivalence with Salesforce. While some parts of our feature set are different (and, we believe, superiour!), the ability to migrate from even complex Salesforce implementations, and immediately realise performance, control and cost benefits, makes the Crust and Corteza platforms the more attractive choice.

Modern Code and Modern Architecture

The backend of Crust and Corteza is written in Golang, a multi-threaded processing language. Designed with performance in mind from the outset, it’s extensively used by Google to power its data centres and applications. Salesforce themselves are even recent converts to Golang.

The frontend of Crust is delivered in Vue.js, a lightweight JavaScript engine which also focuses on performance, reusable components and optimized re-rendering. The frontend should always create an outstanding experience for the users.

The majority of open-source CRM’s are written in PHP, an older, single-threaded processing, web programming language. Reaching up to the hundreds of thousands of users demanded by modern-day customer scale applications should not necessitate complex optimisation efforts on an older codebase – performance should be there by design, as it is in Crust and Corteza.

While Crust’s architecture allows it to be shipped as a “monolith” bundle for smaller sites, it can be split into microservices for larger sites, allowing components with heavier workloads to be fed and watered individually according to their processing needs.

Compose Low-Code Platform

“Compose” is Crust’s answer to Salesforce Lightning, the cloud vendor’s low-code platform. Compose allows businesses to customise Crust CRM quickly and safely, augment its functionality or create entirely new applications (e.g. Crust Service Cloud is also built with Compose).

Intuitive, yet comprehensive in its approach, Compose delivers a “building block” method for designing and implementing your key business applications. With Corredor you can add automation scripts, increasing the efficiency of your application.

With powerful API’s Compose also enables businesses to extend safely beyond the borders of their Crust implementation and integrate with third-party systems – either within the boundaries of their firewall or outside.

User Experience (UX)

UX is crucial, but it is not always about creating unique UX. While some of our features necessitate innovation, much of our approach at Crust is driven by what businesses expect to see from their enterprise applications, especially if they’re seeking viable alternatives to solutions proposed by the likes of Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics365.

Control

With Salesforce you are stuck to their cloud. You don’t know exactly where your sensitive business data is stored, or who has access see it. In Crust and Corteza however, you have full control over all your data. You decide where you want to store it: in the cloud of your choice, behind a firewall or as a hybrid of the two.

Cost

Not everything revolves around cost, but Salesforce prices do hurt. The full Salesforce suite can cost up to an eye-watering USD 300 per user per month and even that does not include the costs of other applications in the appexchange.

Crust and Corteza products are and always will be 100% open source and the cost of support is a fraction of that of Salesforce. Our commitment to quality is sky high and we will always chase feature equivalency with or superiority to Salesforce.

We’re Growing

Crust Technology has ambitious growth plans. We’re already the premium open-source CRM vendor for enterprise-scale deployments, but we’re aiming for outright market leadership. We’re excited about this journey. If you are too, please contact us at recruitment@crust.tech.

Crust 2019.12 brings new applications and features

11 December 2019
Cork, Ireland

Crust Technology is excited to announce a new release of Crust, the open-source Salesforce alternative. This is a major release of Crust which includes new applications, such as Crust Service Cloud, and a long list of new features and improvements.

What’s new in Crust 2019.12?

Crust Service Cloud home page

 

  • New Crust CRM features:
    • Optimized CRM pages layouts
    • Improved quotes layouts
    • Updated automation scripts, so that they work with the new Crust Corredor

Optimized CRM layout

 

  • New Crust Compose (low-code platform) features:
    • Record import and exporting
    • Improved module builder, with a 2 step process helping to create pages for a new module
    • Improved layout in the page builder
    • Improved calendars that now supports multiple event feed sources, colour coding, and filtering
    • Improved reporting with new charts and chart options
    • New options for automation scripts, including:
      • New settings (including “run in the browser or Corredor”, “run asynchronously”, “run with a timeout” etc)
      • New script tester
      • Easy selection of triggers
      • Scheduler
    • PDF previews
    • Namespace selector (allowing you to quickly go from one Compose application – a namespace – to another)

Improved module builder with checks if list and record pages have been created

 

 

New options in automation scripts

 

 

Namespace selector on the left, allowing you to move quickly from one namespace to another

 

  • New Crust Enterprise Messaging features:
    • New Messaging settings:
      • Enable or disable emojis
      • Enable or disable notifications
      • Notifications template
      • Enable or disable attachments
      • Enable or disable attachments upload from the gallery and/or camera
      • Set max file size for uploads
      • Set file type whitelist
    • PDF previews
    • Improved messaging and rich text input areas with tiptap

New messaging options

 

 

PDF preview and the improved input area

 

  • Other new features:
    • Redesigned admin area with:
      • Improved layout and menu
      • Change permission settings with a click
      • Searchable and filterable lists
      • Dashboard with the current status
    • Improved login page layout
    • MinIO integration for High-Performance Object Storage. This enables Crust to use standard storage backends (list Amazon S3), data-encryption etc.
    • YAML export of CRM and Service Cloud namespaces
    • New documentation site: https://docs.crust.tech

New admin area with dashboard

Bug-fixes

Over 100 issues have been solved since the last release, including enhancements and bug-fixes. The detailed list is available in the repository on Github.

Corteza Project

In June 2019, Crust Technology contributed all of its software intellectual property to the Commons Conservancy, an independent open-source foundation. In doing so, we created Corteza, “The Digital Work Platform for Humanity”. Corteza has been featured on sites like opensource.com, and the Corteza Community recently hit another milestone by growing to over 2000 individuals and companies from all over the world.

New features are added to Corteza continuously, and it often gets updated a few times a week. Crust is an enterprise product based on Corteza source code. It is stable and thoroughly tested, and major releases come out every three months.

Getting Crust

Crust is the open-source Salesforce alternative for businesses and organisations. To learn how to get Crust, or how to migrate from your current solution, please contact Crust via the contact form or via sales@crust.tech.

Online Demo

There is an online demo of Crust available at https://www.crust.tech/demo.

About Crust

Crust Technology Ltd, headquartered in Ireland, is the driving force behind the open-source Unified Work platform Crust, providing a flexible, self-hosted platform for your organisation to work and communicate internally while engaging with its customers, suppliers, partners and other third parties externally. Its integrated approach to identity, messaging and business logic delivers a simple-to-use yet extensible means for managing users and the applications they require every day, whether in the cloud, behind the firewall or a hybrid of the two. For more information, visit www.crust.tech or follow @Crusttech on Twitter.

Why Crust is Ideal for Not-for-Profit Organisations

For many, either being part of something bigger than ourselves or standing up for closely held principles are important. In June 2019, Crust Technology contributed all of its software intellectual property to the Commons Conservancy, an independent open-source foundation. In doing so, we created Corteza, “The Digital Work Platform for Humanity”.

Corteza

The objective of Corteza is clear – to deliver a 100% free, open-source, self-hosted cloud platform for growing your organisation’s productivity. It enables relationships and protects the work and the privacy of all those concerned.

This effort began by producing a fully-featured alternative to Salesforce – the cloud leader in CRM – and an alternative to Slack Enterprise Messaging. All of this is presented via a unified interface on the frontend, joined up with automation on the backend. Very recently, we also released Service Cloud, a self-hosted enterprise-grade alternative to Salesforce and Oracle Service Clouds.

Everything is delivered with modern, hyper-efficient code. Organisations can benefit from the impressive low-code development facilities to build their own custom apps, reducing costs and lowering time to delivery.

The publicly stated values of the Corteza project are as follows:

Public Good:

Corteza’s software and other offerings are designed and provided as a public good for the public benefit.

Open and Transparent:

Corteza’s governance and operations are open and transparent. It uses the best practices from across the not-for-profit, private and public sectors.

Diverse and Inclusive:

Corteza’s members, policies and programmes are designed to actively foster diverse, inclusive and non-discriminatory participation.

Built for Humanity:

Corteza’s software and other offerings have a real impact on people’s lives. As such, they are designed, built and provided with a strong emphasis on quality, privacy, security and usability.

Crust for the Not-for-profit sector

All Crust software is built 100% on the Corteza code-base. Professional versions of Crust software are made freely available to the not-for-profit sector, including all professional software maintenance.

On top of this, Crust is beginning to push development of Corteza’s outreach Programmes, which range from Humanitarian through Ecological to Privacy Programmes.

Delivering a standards-based public good, then constantly striving to push those standards higher is a lot of work. Being part of something bigger than us is key to the Crust team’s identity and to our brand. Since the launch of Corteza, we discovered that the more we give and the better we give, the stronger our business gets.

The Not-for-Profit sector deserves an approach to building software that is inclusive of its requirements and which ensures organisations in the sector do not fall out-of-step with developments in the private and public sectors. Crust and Corteza successfully deliver this approach, feature-rich and with ever-reducing economic barriers to entry and participation. Our low-code philosophy is central to this ethos and we go out of our way to ensure that, where coding is required, it’s limited to well-supported and inexpensive JavaScript skills.

The cherry on the cake? Crust Essential Support subscriptions are completely free-of-charge for Not-for-Profit organisations and their customer bases – subject to the condition that the organisation is fulfilling its purpose by using our software. Digitally transforming and managing your relationships with your donors, advocates and volunteers have never been easier.

Try out Crust

Are you working in a Not-for-Profit organisation? Get your free online Crust demo here.

 

 

 

Is Salesforce Copying the Crust and Corteza Product Strategy?

Is Salesforce Copying the Crust and Corteza Product Strategy?

Last week brought us the news that two of the most significant players in the CRM market, Salesforce and Microsoft had struck a deal. Salesforce Marketing Cloud will soon be hosted by Microsoft Azure. At the same time Microsoft Teams, a Slack Messaging alternative, will be integrated with Salesforce Sales CRM and Service Clouds.

When we were first designing Crust and Corteza’s product strategy, our research showed that Salesforce Chatter, the internal messaging system on the cloud-only platform, was the most disappointing element of its portfolio. In its place, we decided to implement a core Messaging system inspired by Slack’s architecture and feature set. This feature set is already included in our Sales CRM and Service Cloud.

Why was Slack-like Messaging of such interest? At Crust, we believe that openness, consistency and standardisation of data architecture are critical to the healthy long-term functioning of a business. Cobbled-together data architectures are expensive to maintain, and it’s always the customer that pays. Crust and our community project, Corteza, avoid such complexity by default. Our Messaging can suck in data from thousands of different sources if we wish and standardise that data for use across our various applications. Try to do that with email…

At Crust, we believe that openness, consistency and standardisation of data architecture are critical to the healthy long-term functioning of a business.

It remains to be seen what Salesforce’s decision to hold hands with Microsoft means in terms of businesses’ data sovereignty. Recently, Google’s been accused of health data stockpiling, and one of the concerns is that data from one service will be used to promote others. Is it possible someday that Microsoft buys Salesforce outrightly, giving it unfettered access to all activity on the powerful trio of Salesforce, LinkedIn and Skype? That’s a lot of sensitive trading data and intellectual property, and it highlights the big question of a data grab where Microsoft may find itself wandering into antitrust territory once again.

However, let’s face it; this is all about money. The real costs of Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics365 already border on extortionate. How much more customers can be “locked-in” by dependence on the vendors’ closed business logic implementations and hoisted with new charges remains to be seen. If history is any measure, then they usually find a way.

Crust and Corteza will always aim to include market-leading features, will always provide familiar UI’s and UX and will always be 100% free and open. Our strategy to offer a robust, self-hosted alternative to Salesforce looks more aligned than ever.

So is Salesforce copying Crust and Corteza’s strategies? Maybe just a little wink in our direction with their Microsoft Teams integration, but for the rest, we’re a whole lot safer and less expensive a bet 😉

Online demo

Want to check it out for yourself? Get your free online Crust demo here.

Crust or Corteza?

At Crust we often get asked the question as to whether an organisation should use Crust or Corteza? If your deployment is in a professional setting, then we always recommend Crust. If not, Corteza is a good option, as it usually has some extra features. We often use the analogy of Fedora’s relationship to Red Hat Enterprise Linux to explain the differences. However, that’s an over-simplified comparison, and we usually need to explain in more detail. The following are some useful questions and answers:

What’s the difference between Crust and Corteza?

Corteza is fundamentally a development and testing platform. We’re continually adding new features to it, and it often gets updated a few times a week. This “rolling-release” approach means you need to know your way around Corteza to support it reliably.

Best think of Crust of as an enterprise product based on Corteza source code. It is stable and thoroughly tested. The versions we sell are based on major releases which only come out every three months (the next major version release is 19.12 this December). Crust also doesn’t contain everything in Corteza, for apparent reasons.

Are There Other Differences?

Yes, and they’re essential differences too! They primarily concern intellectual property.

Corteza is released under an Apache 2.0 license. It is 100% the property of the Commons Conservancy Foundation. Crust, while based on Corteza code, has its proprietary binaries and a proprietary user subscription model.

One reason Crust takes this approach is to offer more flexibility to enterprise customers who may not want to work with an exclusively open source license. Customers may wish to add on their proprietary extensions or business logic.

The other main reason is that open-source software licenses are distributed “as is” without warranties or assurances of any kind. The “as is” condition is often unacceptable to enterprises, with good reason. Businesses need to know someone’s going to take responsibility when software throws up bugs and other surprises.

Will Long-Term Support Ever be made Available for Corteza?

Yes, we certainly hope so someday. The stronger the community gets, the more likely this will be. Corteza counts many great organisations amongst its users to date, and exciting new developments are happening almost by the week.

Long-term support is a big responsibility for a community to bear and maintain. However, with enough determination, we’ll reach that goal, for sure.

Any Plans for a SaaS Service?

For those who don’t want to self-host their deployments and wish to leave all support and management to the team here at Crust Technology, we will be delivering a Crust Cloud in 2020. Watch this space for more information!

Online demo

Want to check it Crust for yourself? Get your free online demo now.

How CRM Software Can Change Your Online Business

When you hear the word CRM, what comes to your mind? Do you see a software that helps you keep customer data or do you see an application that provides actionable insights? If you think of it only as a customer information repository, then you may not be taking much advantage of the capabilities of a CRM system. If you think of it as a way to grow your business, then you are on the right track.

But a CRM application is not just for your sales team only. It can also work for your marketing and customer service units. When you align your customer relationship management (CRM) strategy with other departments’ workflows, you can uncover more information about your customers, thus giving you a holistic view of them. Then you can have a better understanding of them, which can help you gain their trust and continuing business.

That is not all. A CRM solution has other benefits for your business such as the ones we discuss below .

1. It can help you understand your customers

The main purpose of CRM is right there in the name: to build stronger relationships with customers. This is preferable to finding new leads and prospects because they cost 5 times more than to maintain your business relationships with your current clients, according to an infographic by Invesp.

Finding new customers is more costly than keeping existing ones.

When used correctly, a CRM can boost your business with existing customers because it helps you see who is making purchases, who is engaged with your marketing activities, and who you need to watch to make sure they stay with your company.

The insights you gain from a CRM software can also help you personalize your interactions with your buyers one-on-one. It can be something as basic as using their names on emails or it can be something as complex as curating content that is tailored to their needs and interests.

2. It empowers you to appreciate your clients

When you store all of your customer data on your CRM system, you can see with a glance who among your patrons provide you with the most revenue. You can use this information for creating targeted marketing campaigns that can entice this percentage of customers to spend more.

You can do that by reaching out to them individually via a personalized email. This is when you can tell them how much you appreciate their business and give them offers and discounts exclusive only for them. You can also generate special coupons or codes for their use and enter those in your CRM platform to make sure that they are honored upon checkout.

3. It can aid you in making good use of your data

Big data is big. It is not just in size but in impact as well. Since your CRM process requires that you collect information from customers at every turn, it becomes a data mine that you can exploit. You can get insights from this dataset through reports and dashboards. The latter offers you a comprehensive summary while the former can provide you with in-depth information.

Additionally, you can utilize your CRM data to determine the performance of your sales team. Once you have the numbers, you can determine who the top performers are, who are lagging behind, and the areas where you need to work on.

That is not all there is to data, though. Modern CRM solutions are now capable of connecting with third-party software. You can take advantage of this by integrating it with a BI/analytics solution so that you can uncover more insights that can help drive business growth.

4. It automates tasks and boosts efficiency

If you started doing business without advanced software, it can be challenging to make teams use CRM. However, once you show them what such a system can do and ease them into adopting it, then they may embrace it fully in no time.

But what exactly can a CRM software do to make your workforce accept it?

For one, it can automate redundant tasks like data entry. Nobody likes inputting the same information over again into a system. With a CRM armed with automation capabilities, your employees can save time and energy because it enters the necessary information into relevant fields.

Moreover, this application relieves your employees of the task of having to follow-up with customers, leads, and prospects. That is because your CRM solution can trigger follow-up emails when it meets certain conditions (that you can set when you configure it the first time).

5. It lets you take your business wherever there is internet

The beauty of cloud-based applications is the way they offer mobility. This can only mean that you can work on the go, from home, or even in a cafe or another setting. Because of this, you can answer the queries of your staff and step in to resolve issues anytime.

What’s more, your being able to access your CRM technology from anywhere helps you stay in control and make sure that business is running smoothly even when you are not present in the office.

Putting customers first

A customer-first approach can help you put your business operations perspective. That is something a CRM can assist you with because of its rich data regarding your leads and purchasers. With the insights you uncover, you can enhance your engagement and marketing strategies to make them more attractive to your entire audience or to specific segments. Therefore, you can inspire loyalty and retain your best customers.

Cross-Application and Federated Automation with Crust Corredor

5 August 2019
Cork, Ireland

Crust Technology has announced the impending release of Crust Corredor, its new backend technology for cross-application and federated workflow automation.

The original philosophical intent behind Crust was for the platform to be a seamless three way marriage between identity, communication and business logicsays Niall McCarthy, CEO of Crust Technology.While Crust’s flexible and scalable micro-service architecture helps make it the ideal private cloud technological alternative to Salesforce’s centralised public cloud, Corredor delivers on our philosophical intent”.

What is Corredor?

Corredor is a trigger-based automation plugin designed specifically for the Crust platform. Corredor adds more safety, resilience, consistency and flexibility to the existing front-end javascript automation engine that ships with Crust CRM and Crust Compose by default. Extending your key CRM and Service Cloud workflows across your entire Crust deployment and beyond is about to become a reality.

Automations Across Crust CRM and Crust Compose Applications

Corredor will enable customers to build automations and CRM workflows across any Crust Compose-based component or namespace, reducing duplication of effort and maximising synergies between your Crust applications.

Federated Automation Across Instances of the Crust Platform

Via Crust API’s it will be possible to generate automation actions across different instances of the Crust platform, opening up a world of opportunity for efficient third party collaboration. With Corredor, your organisation can share native Crust data anonymously and securely, decouple critical records-based systems gradually and smoothly, or simply deploy multiple free-standing systems with tight data inter-relationships.

System and Messaging Triggers (Coming Soon!)

Corredor will soon extend to all parts of the core Crust platform, delivering automation capabilities for both the Crust System and Crust Messaging services, thereby ensuring the marriage of identity, communication and business logic is complete.

Version Control with Git Integration (Coming Soon!)

To help protect your organisation and deliver clear version control over your automations, HTTP support for Git-based repositories will be included with Corredor. The truly flexible enterprise needs to be able to examine, re-use, evolve and even roll back its business logic easily and safely. Combined with Crust Compose’s unlimited namespace feature, Corredor delivers the complete business logic automation solution.

In line with Crust Technology’s open source policy, all software code for Crust Corredor will be contributed to the Corteza project at https://www.cortezaproject.org where it will be freely available to users on a permanent basis.

Crust Corredor will be released in early September 2019. For Proof-of-Concept trials please contacts Crust at sales@crust.tech.

10 Reasons why Crust CRM is the True Salesforce Alternative

Many CRM applications claim to be an alternative to Salesforce, the cloud-only market leader, but very few can actually justify this claim. Crust CRM has been designed to be superior in many ways to Salesforce whilst delivering a competitive feature set. If you’re looking for a Salesforce alternative, here’s why Crust CRM should be the top of your list. Read more

Crust Technology Announces “Crust Service Cloud”

16 July 2019
Cork, Ireland

Crust, the most advanced open source CRM in the world and the No. 1 private cloud alternative to Salesforce, has announced the upcoming release of Crust Service Cloud.

Crust Service Cloud will deliver the following feature set:

  • Agent console with 360 degree view of any customer
  • Advanced Case Management with integrated omni-channel communications
  • Attachments Management
  • Products Module
  • Service Level Agreement (SLA) Tracking and Monitoring
  • Knowledge Base
  • Integrated Response Templates
  • Dashboards
  • Escalation Automation
  • Scripts Module
  • Self-service Portal
  • Integration with the Corteza Application Ecosystem
  • Skills module for intelligently and automatically assigning tasks to the most appropriate staff member
  • Complete integration with Crust CRM and Crust Messaging
  • Mobile ready

Read more