REDMOND, Wash., and SANTA CLARA, Calif., March 19, 2003 — Microsoft Business Solutions (Nasdaq:
“MSFT” ) and Network Associates®
“NET” ) today announced a relationship, based on a letter of agreement, to provide innovative solutions for customer relationship management (CRM) and help desk customers at Convergence, Microsoft Business Solutions’ customer conference in Orlando, Fla. Network Associates will provide a new help desk offering that integrates the company’s Magic Solutions HelpDesk IQ™ product, also announced today, with the Microsoft®
Business Solutions CRM (Microsoft CRM) platform. The combined solution is designed to provide additional help desk functionality for businesses, which are experiencing an increasing demand from customers and business partners to conduct more business processes electronically.
“Advanced help desk and CRM solutions will enable businesses to increase their level of customer service while enabling them to support the company’s overall business strategy and operational efficiency,”
said Karen Smith, research director, customer relationship management, at Aberdeen Group.
“In the past, help desk integration has been one of the missing components in many CRM strategies. Today, Aberdeen sees growing interest in new, integrated approaches — that are easier to implement and maintain — to help companies automate and improve many business and support processes.”
Integrating Magic’s best-of-breed help desk functionality into Microsoft CRM Customer Service Professional Edition, Network Associates’ offering will provide the tools needed to increase customer satisfaction levels through greater visibility into the productivity of processes, people and services. By allowing IT and help desk information to be instantly available via the self-service portal, help desk administrators can easily and quickly reduce problem resolution times, facilitating increased productivity and lower cost of ownership.
“I have spent an extensive amount of time evaluating Microsoft’s CRM solution as well as a host of help desk solutions,”
said Charles Baker, vice president of operations for Sunset Direct Inc., a sales and marketing support company located in Austin, Texas.
“Magic HelpDesk IQ seems to have the feature set best suited to fulfill my needs in a help desk solution. When you pair that with the ease of Microsoft integration, the decision becomes automatic.”
“We are looking forward to this relationship that will bring together Magic Solutions’ best-of-breed service desk technology and Microsoft’s solid brand recognition within the industry, as it will eventually enable us to offer our customers a one-of-a-kind industry-leading product,”
said Terry Elton, vice president of business development at SteelCloud Inc.
“We are confident this new combined solution, once available, will provide our customers with the required functionality they need to meet their increasing business and organizational demands.”
Network Associates’ Magic HelpDesk IQ, designed to work in sync with Microsoft CRM, extends customization capabilities for administrators, making data entry quick and easy. Network Associates’ Magic HelpDesk IQ also enhances Microsoft CRM e-mail integration so end users can send e-mail messages directly to the service management system. A simple e-mail message addressed to a company’s help desk now can be instantly converted into a help desk ticket that is automatically routed by the workflow engine. Network Associates’ Magic HelpDesk IQ also offers self-service Web automation, inventory tracking and enhanced audit capabilities for complete visibility into the process of each service request.
“Midmarket customers need best-of-breed solutions designed for their specific needs. Microsoft CRM’s customer service functionality combined with the Magic Solutions HelpDesk IQ will provide top-notch functionality for the help desk industry,”
said David Thacher, general manager for CRM at Microsoft Business Solutions.
“Our relationship with Network Associates will help our joint customers build the type of customer relationships needed for enhanced profitability and long-term market growth through increased efficiencies across their service.”
Microsoft CRM makes it easy for businesses to provide consistent, effective service and increase volume capacity without adding head count. Service employees can easily view, share and update customer and product information, helping ensure efficient, up-to-date sales and service. Automated routing and queuing of support requests helps ensure that customer service representatives serve customers efficiently from initial contact through resolution.
“We are bringing together award-winning technology from Magic Solutions with Microsoft’s CRM platform to offer the strongest industry solution for small and medium-sized businesses,”
said Jeff Honeycomb, president of Magic Solutions.
“The HelpDesk IQ solution is designed to provide small to medium-sized businesses with advanced customer service help desk capabilities, enabling these organizations to maintain the highest levels of customer service and retention while simplifying complex business processes and reducing overall support costs.”
Network Associates’ Magic Solutions HelpDesk IQ offering integrated with Microsoft CRM Customer Service Professional Edition will be available June 2003 through the Microsoft Business Solutions channel and Network Associates channel partners.
About Magic Solutions
, a division of Network Associates, is the leading provider of browser-based service management solutions. Magic Solutions provides integrated, process-oriented e-business support solutions for organizations across the enterprise to deliver the highest levels of service and great efficiency. Magic products are based on a zero-footprint client deployment, which delivers the highest levels of service with the most cost-efficient business model. The Magic Solutions suite of products includes Magic Service Desk; Magic Change and Configuration Management, Magic Service Management Integration Engine, Magic Client Services; Magic Self Service Desk, Magic Business Administration; Magic Management Center; Zero Administration Client (ZAC); Remote Desktop 32; and Event Orchestrator, Magic Call Computer Telephony Integration, Magic Systems Management Server Viewer. For more information about Magic Solutions, please visit http://www.magicsolutions.com/ .
About Network Associates
With headquarters in Santa Clara, Calif., Network Associates Inc. (NYSE
“NET” ) is a leading supplier of network security and availability solutions. Network Associates is comprised of three product groups: McAfee® Security, delivering world-class anti-virus and security products; Sniffer®
Technologies, a leader in network availability and system security; and Magic Solutions, a leader in innovative service management solutions. For more information, Network Associates can be reached at (972) 308-9960 or on the Internet at http://www.networkassociates.com/ .
About Microsoft Business Solutions
Microsoft Business Solutions, a business group of Microsoft, offers a wide range of integrated, end-to-end business applications and services designed to help small, midmarket and corporate businesses become more connected with customers, employees, partners and suppliers. Microsoft Business Solutions’ applications optimize strategic business processes across financial management, analytics, human resources management, project management, customer relationship management, field service management, supply chain management, e-commerce, manufacturing and retail management. The applications are designed to provide insight to help customers achieve business success. More information about Microsoft Business Solutions can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/businesssolutions/ .
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq:
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.
Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
Microsoft Business Solutions ApS is a subsidiary of Microsoft Corp.
Network Associates, McAfee, Sniffer, Magic Solutions, Magic Service Desk, Zero Administration Client, ZAC, Remote Desktop 32 and Event Orchestrator are registered trademarks or trademarks of Network Associates Inc. and/or its affiliates in the United States and other countries. Sniffer( brand products are made only by Network Associates Inc. ( 2003 Networks Associates Technology Inc.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
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