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Preparing a SLA for CRM vendors

Read advice from SaaS expert Alan Winters, including implementation advice and how to prepare a service-level agreement (SLA).

We're currently researching CRM vendors. If we go with an on-premise CRM option, how often should we expect to need updates and upgrades? I am trying to get an idea of what information to include in a service-level agreement (SLA).
This is a good question and the answer is, "it depends" -- on the needs of your business. If your business is changing rapidly and has high growth rate, then you may require frequent updates and or changes to your CRM system. From a version perspective, you typically only need to update the version of the software you purchase on an annual basis. This is totally up to you, however you do not want to get too many versions behind and have to go through a major upgrade (more then two to three versions at one time). The good news is that you are thinking of this now and that you are including these issues in your SLA with the vendor.

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