So, for the last year or so, I’ve been testing various CRM’s and Project Managers out there in hopes to find one that handle my needs properly. I have checked out a few of the top premium ones, but I’m not interested in paying a company to use something that I either don’t have access to make modifications or I have to pay to have modifications. I’d hate to be tied to such an integral tool for business and time management, yet not be able to have it exactly as I’d like it. I also tried some premium self hosted solutions that gave me the access to them, but they were so far off from what I needed and wanted, that I didn’t want to spend tons of time rebuilding them to suit my needs. One of them, I liked for the most part, but in the end, the coder in me decided that I should just put my own together.
Being a WordPress Developer by trade, it was obvious where I’d start. And then I thought, you know what, there’s probably a WordPress CRM plugin out there that does almost everything I need. So of course, I checked. While the ones that I found in the repository (and elsewhere) were definitely functional, they simply didn’t suit my needs, and I figured that since they weren’t very close to what I wanted, I figured it best to just start from scratch.
And that’s exactly what I did. I broke out my Sublime Text 2 (halfway through the build, I switched to Sublime Text 3) and starting smashing. That was about a month ago. The night I started I was trying to be creative and come up with an alternative name for CRM yet based on the acronym itself. I came up with WP CR[a]M and scooped up the domain, so I can have a home for info, tuts, and update info – because of course I was going to have to throw it on git for everyone that wanted it.
Murphy’s Law kicked in the next day and reminded me that before that moment where I got that wild hair up my ass to start building this thing, I was about 3 weeks out from my beta launch of MyTeacherProject.com, a Social Project Sharing site that I built on WordPress with Bootstrap to help teachers find and share projects. This obviously pushed back WP CR[a]M, but I was able to get back to it about two weeks ago.
Since I started on the project I’ve released alpha 1.0 and am mapping out the project scopes for both alpha 1.1 and alpha 1.2. Since I built it to be a CRM with a built in Project and Task Manager, I’ve been buried in it since last night when I installed WP CR[a]M in my hub. I’m currently inputting all of my active clients, active projects and active tasks into it manually. I thought about writing an import script from csv to WP CR[a]M but I really want to get a feel of every aspect of the UX for a first time user so I can test and implement improvements before I drop the beta on git; which will hopefully be very soon. I’d like to get some other users ASAP so that I can get their feedback and ideas on what I can do to make it a better open source WordPress CRM plugin.
Anyhow, I’m pretty stoked because I finally got to build something that I will be using every single day to help me better my productivity.