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Summary

With the acquisition of Optevia, IBM has taken steps to bolster its ability to work with public sector clients, both in the UK and further afield, that are making investments in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. This will allow it to help support transitions and bridge the gap between Microsoft Dynamics CRM and its other cloud offerings.

Support for Microsoft Dynamics CRM gives IBM the opportunity to grow cloud services

Public sector digital transformations can be complex, and understanding the business processes and when and how to change them is fraught with risk. When adding in an IT estate that is increasingly being shifted to the cloud and a lack of skills it is no wonder this is leading to an increase in demand for consultancy support. It is against this backdrop that IBM's acquisition of Optevia, a consultancy that specializes in Microsoft Dynamics CRM in the public sector, should be viewed.

Over the last couple of years, usage of Microsoft Dynamics CRM has increased across the spectrum of government bodies in both the UK and the US. While the larger government departments have stuck with the likes of Oracle or SAP, most smaller government agencies, or those looking for something familiar and out of the box, have tended to go with alternative providers.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM has found traction in local government, as authorities shift to supporting communication with citizens (311 or 101) across traditional and digital contact channels, and for a range of other services from HR through to grant management and funding. A sure sign of its popularity is the number of services based on Microsoft Dynamics CRM that are listed in the Digital Marketplace catalogue in the UK.

Optevia is one of those providers that have been able to carve out a footprint in this increasingly busy marketplace. No doubt the acquisition will help IBM to bridge the gap between its other cloud-based offerings being taken up by government and the growing Microsoft Dynamics CRM base. Now IBM will be looking to take that and apply it to other regions that have also seen significant interest in Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

Appendix

Further reading

"Accenture and Capgemini kick off year with Salesforce-focused acquisitions," IT0019-003533 (January 2016)

2016 Trends to Watch: CRM, IT0020-000168 (December 2015)

Author

Chris Pennell, Practice Leader, Public Sector

chris.pennell@ovum.com

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