Zlatyslava Topchyi

Single Source of Truth About Customers in a Complex IT-Landscape

Discussion created by Zlatyslava Topchyi on Apr 9, 2020

In August 2019, 80% of Forrester survey respondents saw a single source of truth about the customer as a "significant" or "indispensable" factor to ensure the seamless customer experience. 43% stated that its creation across a complex IT-landscape is their top CX challenge.


We are going to show you how to quickly and effectively address this challenge and related ones, using the solutions from the SugarCRM ecosystem.


Register for the webinar "How to Create a Single Source of Truth About Customers in a Complex IT-Landscape"


As the first example, we will take a provider of a platform for trading on Forex.


Data on customer behavior and experience is accumulated in different information systems:

Mission-critical systemsSales&marketing management systemsService management systems
  1. Trading system
  2. Fraud detection system
  3. Compliance management system
  1. CRM system
  2. Web-site
  3. e-mail marketing system
  4. webinar holding system
  1. Ticket management system

To create a single source of truth, we have to provide user-friendly access to the data, various in structure and content, including not typical one for Sugar out-of-the-box:

  • Data on demo and active accounts (opening, closing, the status of the opening procedure, etc.)
  • Experience in using a trading system with specifying duration, number and amount of transactions, used tools
  • Data on fraud incidents
  • History of marketing communication (e-mailing, clicks on links, visits to a website, website materials download, etc.)
  • Interaction with training service (registration and participation in webinars, review of recordings

To successfully solve the task, we should overcome a few challenges.

Challenge 1. Tight IT-budgets

To decrease the burden on IT-budget, we apply the approach that minimizes, and under certain conditions, excludes programming for collecting sensitive business data.


Instead of full or significant duplication of relational data from other systems in the Sugar database, we will apply the approach based on transferring business events: informative and easy-to-interpret insights based on source data.

For example, instead of displaying in Sugar data on demo and active accounts and related data on trading and transactions, we will transfer only a set of the business events important for a user.


This picture presents an event about the first trading on a demo account. An informative icon and description help to grasp the essence and to get all details without looking through reports or subpanels.


Of course, different users will need various events: New Application; Application Progress; Application Declined; Demo account opened; First Trade on Demo account; Withdrawal; Margin Call; etc. It is also evident that as time passes, the number of events, as well as data set describing them, will change.


Thus, it is crucial to ensure the possibility of managing the content of the event and its display flexibly.


What suits best to solve this task is TimeLine Viewer, an add-on from a catalog of certified extensions Sugar Exchange, which provides configuring, collecting, and displaying data as a timeline.


To provide a collection of data, one more challenge with system integration needs overcoming.

Challenge 2. Overburdened IT-teams with limited resources

To get data from external systems, it is not necessary to involve programmers and write code, which will call REST API Sugar. If the system-source can export data to the file or to perform trigger e-mail sending with structured content, it will be sufficient.


For example, the transfer of data on visits to the web site via e-mail notification will look like that.


Regardless of the chosen approach, it is possible to minimize the involvement of developers of third parties. Moreover, you can transfer only raw data to the CRM. Sugar Admin will interpret them according to the needs of CRM users with the help of Logic Builder (low-code service from Sugar Exchange), which allows creating algorithms of Sugar data processing with no programming.


Apart from reducing the load on the IT team, this approach positively influences one more important aspect.

Challenge 3. User Adoption

Processing of data on the Sugar side allows responding faster to the changing needs of business users, which is mission-critical for User Adoption. You can easily present insights over time and show not only the current state of data but show how data changed. You can highlight the essence of changes to save time for the user and make their work more comfortable and efficient.


Displaying data of external systems as useful and easy-to-interpret insights together with no-touch viewing of Sugar CRM data increases the usability of data analyses from the dashboard.

The access to events feeds on list-view' dashboards turns list-view mode into a powerful discovering tool. A user just chooses a filter and gets all related insights to a selected portfolio.

The configuring of automated user responses to the event with SugarBPM and Logic Builder reduces information pressure, which positively effects User Adoption. A full history of essential events together with users’ reactions creates a necessary base for applying AI to generate recommendations for users about the best possible next steps.

In the nutshell

The SugarCRM ecosystem has all the necessary tools to quickly and effectively create a single source of truth about the customer in a complex IT-landscape. Business-event based approach, together with Sugar’s low-code capabilities to configure business processes and data processing algorithms, helps to get a result even if you have tight IT-budgets and overburdened IT-teams with limited resources.


To create a single source of truth about customer, you need to do the following:

  • to define the set and properties of sensitive business events for each system of the IT-landscape
  • to configure sensitive business events in TimeLine Viewer
  • to choose and configure the way of transferring raw data to Sugar (RESTAPI, e-mail, datafile)
  • to configure with Logic Builder algorithms of transforming raw data into TimeLine events
  • to add TimeLine dashlets on dashboards of List and Detailed View of Account, Contact, Lead modules and configure according to the specific needs of users
  • to automate actions on events in SugarBPM or Logic Builder



In the next articles, we are going to show the examples of solving specific tasks, which come up when creating a single source of truth about the customer.


If you are willing to work on your cases, leave a comment and we’ll work it out together.


Find out how to easily create a single source of truth about customers at our webinar: