CRM Core, Trellon, and BADCamp

Submitted by matthew on Thu, 2012-11-15 12:29

Trellon LLCI had expected to get this blog post out far earlier. Unfortunately, I was one of the unfortunates that was stricken with the DrupalFlu this year at BADCamp. Turns out that quite a few people ended up getting sick. So, here we are two weeks out from the summits and I'm finally getting down to writing about what happened at the Camp.

CRM Core

I want to start out by calling out a community project I've been working on at Trellon. CRM Core has been piloted across multiple sites that Trellon has been working on. These pilots have helped the team really refine the framework and have led to a DEV release that the team is now using in public virtual code sprints.

CRM Core is a set of modules for managing contact records within a Drupal site, providing support for contacts, relationships and activities. It provides basic CRM system components and a framework for extending these components to build a custom system that will allow an organization to effectively meet their needs with respect to contact, relationship, and activity tracking.

Chang Xiao of Trellon has written up a couple of tutorials. The first, Building a New Feature for CRM Core , covers the basics of how to build a new feature. The second, Building an Online Petition feature in Drupal using CRM Core, covers how to build a simple petition feature and was the basis for the BADCamp presentation.

If you want to participate in the sprints, there is an IRC channel set up on freenode #drupal-crmcore and there will often be maintainers of the project hanging out. If you see xcf33 or pingers, just reach out. They're friendly. You can also fill out the mailing list signup form for more information.

The Event

I didn't attend very much by way of sessions. I spent a lot of time at the Trellon table talking with people about Trellon, job opportunities, and projects like CRM Core. I like Camps because they are much more intimate than full blown conferences. I was able to hang out with some old friends like Dries, Addison, Mike Meyers, Morten, Cyberswat, Ultimateboy, Todd Nienkerk, Ben Jeavons, Jeff Walpole, lots of the Examiner.com team, Mike Haggerty and Chang Xiao from Trellon, Megan Sanicki from the Drupal Association, and the list goes on and on and on. I was also able to make some new friends.

I did go to the Small Business Summit and was really pleased with the depth and breadth of the topics shared. A few of the talks really targeted challenges I'm having in my own professional life like a laser beam. Abraham Mertens talked about law, contracts, negotiations, and issues that face small Drupal shops today. Glen Hilton of ImageX talked about the recruitment and retention of top talent. Ben Finklea of Volacci discussed Marketing and Brand. John Faber of Chapter3 focused his remarks on Sales. Jeff Walpole of Phase // delved into scaling and making Drupal a sustainable business, touching on the passive income that can come from products.

The discussions were all relevant with the following points (one from each presentation) resonating with me.

  • Dave Logan's Five Stages - Google it and figure out which kinds of people you want to work with
  • Employee replacement is REALLY expensive - $50k - $100K per turn over when you consider all factors around losing a person
  • When strengthening your brand, "Figure Out Who Likes Us" and why. Then work with the people who already like you.
  • Make sales fun for the prospect. They will remember you.
  • When building products designed to sustain the company, for a time there is a cost that must be sunk into R & D and not to services. Are you willing to make that investment?

There were tons of other gems as well.

Unfortunately for me, I became unwell Saturday night and that has lasted until right this minute. I'm still coughing quite a bit. Even so, BADCamp rocked. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I'm looking forward to attending again in the future. Thank you Trellon for supporting my travel. Thank you to the organizers of the event for making it such a great time.

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