Last week in Qobrix (July 2 – July 8)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

Last week we continued our streak of the new feature releases and fixes for some recent regressions.  Here are the six versions we published:

As always, stay tuned for more, and have a great week ahead!

Last week in Qobrix (June 25 – July 1)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

Last week we focused on the development of some long awaited features.  Some of these are too early to release and need more effort.  Some are ready and were released.  Yet others are almost done and are in the last stages of testing.  Here are the versions that we have released last week:

The day to day work is important, but it’s also good to pause for a second sometimes and recognize the milestones and achievements.  On June 30th, we have celebrated the second birthday since the release of Qobrix v1.0.0.  It’s only been two years, but it feels more like that release happened in a galaxy far far away.  Even looking at just the last year, there are 10 major version releases, dozens of new features, and hundreds of improvements.  Qobrix is as good as it ever was, and we keep pushing it further.  So, here’s a cheer for the next year, and another after, and one more, and many more!

Last week in Qobrix (June 18 – June 24)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

Last week was an interesting one.  A few things that we’ve been working on for a while were finished, merged, and released.  Here are the four versions from the last week, which are full of new features and improvements:

As always, there is a lot more in the pipelines.  So stay tuned and have a great week!

Article in Game Changers Magazine: “The key feature of a successful CRM – Flexibility”

Posted on | Published in Featured, General, Qobrix News

We’re very excited about having our CTO, Leonid Mamchenkov, feature in the latest edition of Game Changers magazine with his article “The key feature of a successful CRM – Flexibility”. You can either view the article on the Game Changers website or you can read it below:

 

The key feature of a successful CRM – Flexibility

BY LEONID MAMCHENKOV

CTO of Qobo

 

Q: Very briefly, can you please describe what Qobo and Qobrix are, and what is the difference between the two?

A: Qobo is a company. A group of companies actually. Qobo is the main developer of Qobrix. Qobrix is our software, which comes in a variety of shapes and forms. To begin with, Qobrix is a software development platform for rapidly building business applications. We have developed a number of products and solutions based on the Qobrix platform:

  1. Qobrix CRM and Qobrix Member’s Area/Trader’s Cabinet for the Forex Industry
  2. Qobrix CRM, Client Portal and Agent Portal for the Real Estate Industry
  3. Qobrix Intranet

And of course, the generic version of our CRM System plus other applications.

 

Q: What are some of the features of the Qobrix CRM for the Forex industry?

A: Qobrix CRM comes with all the usual features you’d expect in any CRM, such as leads and accounts management, customer activity tracking, and document storage. However, we have extended and optimized a few of the features specifically for Forex. For example, funds management, trading accounts and trading history handling, KYC and AML processes, and more.

We have also integrated Qobrix CRM with a variety of external tools and services, such as trading platforms, payment gateways, mass mailing solutions, telephony and more.

 

Q: Which feature do you consider to be the key for a successful implementation of a CRM System in a company?

A: Companies vary considerably, even in the same industry. So, do their needs and requirements. What works for one, is often completely useless for another. The one feature that we therefore consider to be an absolute necessity for a successful CRM is flexibility.

 

Q: Can you provide examples of the CRM flexibility that you have had to deliver?

A: Sure. Here are a few areas where we’ve seen significant variations between different companies: marketing channels, onboarding process, partners, management, fund management, trading, support, document management, etc.

 

Q: Let’s dig deeper. For example, what are some of the most significant differences that you have seen in the onboarding process?

A: Most retail Forex companies use marketing campaigns to bring in potential clients (leads) who register on the website and then follow a particular process, during which they are assisted via automated emails and telephone calls from the sales team. In this scenario, a CRM system needs a solid API for the integration with the website. It also needs email automation and tools for lead assignment. Reporting is an important part of such a system too. Integrations with telephony systems, calendars, and other tools are important as well.

But that’s not the only way, of course. We’ve seen many younger companies put more focus on their partnerships. Introducing brokers and affiliates, in this case, are responsible for bringing in leads and help during the conversion process. A CRM system for such setup needs tight security and improved controls for batch processing, as leads are often imported periodically (once or twice a day), instead of coming in one-by-one.

A further variation are companies that provide a VIP-like service. Each client is hand-held through the process, and the company works only with a few clients, but provides them with a much more personal service. A CRM system for a company like this does not require importing or a complex API. Instead, it

should provide more control for managing non-structured data and extended customer information. Having to manage fields like “Wife’s birthday” and “Child’s name” would be a major annoyance for most retail Forex companies, but it’s crucial for the VIP service.

 

Q: How does such flexibility apply to funds management?

A: We’ve seen a number of variations in this area as well. Starting with the simple fact that there are countless payment gateways available for integration. All of them do the same thing – handle the transfer of money from and to the client. But each service provides a different API, with different

features, rates, and quirks. There are significant variations in what a company can and cannot do based just on which payment gateways it decides to use.

Furthermore, there are different approaches to how to handle deposits and withdrawals internally, within the company. Some Forex brokers transfer funds directly to and from clients’ trading accounts. Others work with wallets, which provide a layer of control and flexibility. Internal transfers or transferring of funds between trading accounts is something else to think about. Some brokers don’t offer it at all. Some allow such transfers only within the same trading platform. Others expand the functionality to support all kinds of transfers, including not only the transfers between trading accounts of a client, but between the client and an introducing broker.

Over and above this, we are seeing many Forex companies experimenting with the cryptocurrency world, which brings its own challenges and benefits. CRM flexibility is a vital component to all this. Not only does the modern world provide many options to choose from, but it continues to change and any successful CRM system needs to adopt and change with it.

 

Q: What are, in your opinion, some of the future challenges to CRM flexibility?

A: These are plenty. In our view, CRM systems are moving away from being solely useful for sales and marketing functions. Instead, they are becoming more of a centralized system for the entire company, all of its departments, and even expanding further into a tool for partners, vendors, and even clients.

Also, the market is becoming more and more dynamic, with significant paradigm shifts happening every few months or years, instead of decades, so CRM systems need to adopt faster and to a wider range of problems. That also brings the challenges associated with larger data sets and an increased number of active users, meaning that CRM systems need to continuously improve the performance and security that they offer.

 

Q: How are you approaching these challenges? How do you make sure that Qobrix stays flexible, secure, and fast?

A: We have a number of approaches that help us with this. Firstly, we follow best practices established in software development. We use a number of tools and processes to help us stay on track. These vary from code management and testing tools to project management and documentation.

Secondly, we build Qobrix as a modular system, where each part is as independent and autonomous as possible. We rely on a lot of Open Source Software to make sure that we don’t reinvent the wheel. We try to minimize custom development that we do for each client, and instead build reusable, flexible features which we iterate over and over. We favour convention over configuration, and configuration over development.

Thirdly, we utilize a lot of the cloud infrastructure that helps us with scalability and security. Amazon AWS is an integral part of our development process and is crucial even for projects which are hosted on the client’s infrastructure.

Lastly, we focus a lot on the integration of Qobrix with available tools and services. Qobrix provides a full featured API, so it is easy to plug it into an existing company’s infrastructure. And it also comes with a variety of connectivity options to common and widely used solutions.

 

Q: Are there any challenges, current or future, where CRM flexibility is important, but where the technology alone is not enough to solve the problems?

A: One particular challenging area in the Forex industry is regulatory compliance. There are many regulations which are already in place, and a few which are changing or upcoming. Stricter compliance for the KYC (Know Your Client) and AML (Anti-Money Laundering) procedures, as well as the upcoming GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) come to mind.

This is one area where CRM vendors will need to work more with compliance officers, lawyers, and specialist from other professions in order to adopt and adjust to these ever-changing rules.

Last week in Qobrix (June 4 – June 10)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

Last week not much has happened within the Qobrix platform development.  We have only released a single patch version:

However, quite a bit was done with some of our Qobrix applications.  Forex CRM, for instance, got the most changes and improvements.  We have adjusted the fields in some of the core modules, like Leads, Accounts, and Trading Accounts.  We have also slightly improved the Campaigns module.  And we have significantly improved the Partners functionality.  There is now a separate module for managing Partners (replacing the old functionality with multiple fields).  Partners module supports hierarchical relationships (partner, sub-partner, sub-sub-partner, etc) and provides an easy way to track incoming requests via the partner channels.

We have also improved the synchronization of data between the Forex Member’s Area and the Forex CRM.  New registrations are now tracked against the Partners and Campaigns, account and document statuses are updated in both directions, and the document files are pushed to the CRM correctly, irrelevant of the file type and size.

We have also prepared a few fixes and improvements that will be released this week.  These are now in the final stages of testing.

As always, stay tuned and have a great week ahead!

Last week in Qobrix (May 21 – May 27)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

As we mentioned earlier, last week was mostly all about the iFX Expo and GDPR.  It was a pretty hectic week with all sorts of requests and issues, coming in between the “we changed our privacy policy” emails from each and every website and service that we ever used.  Among all that, we’ve done quite a bit of work, which should start showing up on your radar shortly.  For now, we’ve only released a single version:

We have also managed to sneak into this month issue of the Game Changer magazine for the second time, with the following up article on the subject of flexible software, CRM, and financial service.

As always, stay tuned for more updates and have a great week ahead!

Last week in Qobrix (May 14 – May 20)

Posted on | Published in Qobrix News

Last week was a little bit hectic for us in the office.  Most of our clients are preparing for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) kicking in this week.  Many are also getting ready for the iFX EXPO International 2018, which is probably the largest and most important event in the Forex industry.  Yet others are pushing out new marketing campaigns, getting ready for the summer business.  So, most of our time was spent on the client projects again.  However we managed to release the following Qobrix versions:

As always, stay tuned for more updates and have a great week ahead!