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Stepan Ovchinnikov

Implementation of self-hosted Bitrix24.

How many customers use the self-hosted Bitrix24?

More than a million companies use Bitrix24. I believe there are at least 60% of them are inactive or just trying B24 for testing.

Therefore, consider 400 thousand of them. Let's drop those who are completely satisfied with the cloud version and do not want anything more.

Let it be 200 thousand. Let's drop those who do not want to spend money and energy on the boxed version (the financial costs at the initial stage for the cloud version - at least 20 times less).

So, there are 20 thousand customers left. These are companies that have bought or are ready to buy a self-hosted version and invest in the development of the system "for their needs." These are serious customers. They are waiting for a good job.

Bitrix24 software improvements are complex. To fulfill them, you must understand the tasks of the business, know the structure of the system and be able to solve problems. Competent developers are few. There are even fewer active developers.

The market is promising but empty. We develop and support corporate portals on a self-hosted version of Bitrix24. Our goal is to take a larger share of this growing market.

An important step towards this goal is to have a broad outlook and deep competence in how to create extensions for Bitrix24, how to evaluate this work and how to properly do it. The price of the error is high.

The article gives an overview of the tasks of extending the functions of Bitrix24 for the summer of 2016. Each task is commented and evaluated.

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Bitrix24 implementation & customization

Who are the customers?

Basically - these are serious industrial or commercial enterprises. Less often - start-ups and creative companies. Usually they have 50-500 "computerized" employees, as well as "field staff" and production.

Who sets the task of updating Bitrix24? There are three options: the head of sales, the chief of IT, or "the one who brings order." Tasks usually correspond to the size of the organization and to the "project leader".

Who solves the problems of implementation and improvement of Bitrix24?

Web integration is the creation of large information web systems that are deeply integrated into the customer's business. It allows to reduce the cost of working with customers, increase sales and automate processes.

INTERVOLGA – is a competent web integrator. We can solve all the problems of web integration on our own. Most of our projects are integrated and integrated. 

Our principle is to benefit the customer business through intelligent use of web technologies. 

Bitrix24 - one of the key platforms by which we solve integration challenges.

What customers want?

The tasks are very different and depend little on the sphere where the company operates. The tasks rather depend on the "dominant process", on what needs to be improved in the organization.

The profile of the future project can be understood by the position of the contactee. An IT service representative is interested in technical support and automation of inventory accounting, a businessman is interested in CRM and call processing, the boss needs the company to work more energetically.

We identified 50 topical problems of development of the self-hosted version, which were encountered during the summer of 2016. We should say that demand is changing, six months ago the tasks were slightly different.

All tasks we estimate in "hours of work" of the expert. Usually it is a consultant-designer-manager and developer. And there is almost no front-end and designer works in Bitrix24 projects.

First - small tasks, with which all begin. They are quite simple and often do not require preliminary research and design.

Small tasks. Up to 50 hours.

Installing the Bitrix24 self-hosted version on the server

We do everything according to the instructions: we take the server, run the "web environment" or the "Bitrix virtual machine" on it. Then we deploy the self-hosted portal through "restore.php" script. It takes a few hours.

Another few hours take up the configuring. It usually includes delegating the domain, configuring the internal email or connecting the external mail, "opening ports" on the server and solving different system administration problems.

We always check that the portal is running fast. Fast work means 30 to 50 points in the metric of Bitrix.

The server must run fast at once, because with a large number of employees and actions, the speed will decrease. The amount of stored files has little effect on performance.

Estimate: 8-20 hours.

Important notice: the server must have 16GB of memory (or more), SSD drive and modern CPU. Preferred operating system is CentOS. Order a consultation on the purchase and installation of Bitrix24

Transferring fr om cloud to self-hosted edition

The transfer of the cloud portal Bitrix24 to a self-hosted version is performed as follows:

  1. Buy the self-hosted version 

  2. Prepare a server and deploy there the self-hosted B24 (can be a trial version). See the task "Installing the Bitrix24 self-hosted version on the server".

  3. Ask at Bitrix technical support to prepare your portal for transferring fr om the "cloud" (it takes 1-2 days, only on working days). As a result, you will receive a "backup" of files and database of the portal. Its size can be from hundreds of megabytes to several gigabytes.

  4. Deploy the backup on the server.

  5. Do not forget to turn off the cloud portal or "fire" there all employees there. Otherwise, someone will definitely continue to work "in the old portal".

Estimate: 8-20 hours.

Important notice: you should check the server in advance and "mobilize" the system administrator. This must be done, because within 1-2 days until the unloading is done, you   you will not be able to use the cloud portal (data will not be saved), and the self-hosted portal will not be ready yet.

It is wrong to turn these 2 days into a week. Order the implementation of Bitrix24

Training of employees and consulting

As a rule, all new customers are concerned with the topic of "training" employees and ask questions.

But most often, training is not necessary. All people who are familiar with office programs and social networks, immediately ready to use the portal.

It is enough to show 1-2 presentations by the instructor for employees and demonstration of the basic principles of work in the system. After this, it is necessary to develop and implement regulations or an instructions with screenshots (7-10 pages will be enough).

Large and bureaucratic companies may require complex usage regulations. They need consulting.

Estimate: training rarely takes more than 15 hours.

Important notice: training is much easier if you can qualitatively "sell" employees the idea of using B24 in work. How to do it - read in our articles: Bitrix24 implementation manifest and World creation in the organization.

Storage of contracts, registers of applications, journals

Note: do not confuse this task with "Document management", it is described next.

If you need to store templates and scans of contracts, invoices, complaints, maintain lists of "something" - this is solved by setting up Group Disks, Lists and Regulations.

Software improvements are needed to improve the search and additional access restrictions.

Estimate: setup, regulations, training - up to 15 hours. With improvements of the search it can be up to 50 hours. And more.

Important notice: first simplify the processes, then automate them.

Business processes: "Leads processing", "Negotiation of contracts", "Payments", "Handling of complaints" and "Planning an advertising campaign"

Business processes are in demand if you need to collect a chain of steps from the existing tools of the B24 and consolidate it.

Steps are tasks, chat messages, document status changes, files, lists, contacts and CRM transactions.

As a rule, any business process, which consists of standard steps, requires 10 to 50 hours for implementation. Typical labor costs - about 20 hours.

Estimate: 20-50 hours.

Important notice: you first need to write the terms of reference for the business process. This 2-5 sheets of description of requirements. Change the terms of reference is much cheaper and easier than changing the business process.

Not everything that you consider a business process can be realized by this tool in Bitrix24. Sometimes it requires a separate development. About this further.

Batch processing of data in CRM and in Bitrix24 projects

It is a rare but interesting task. It occurs in the process of using CRM or managing projects when a lot of data is accumulated with which "something is wrong."

For example, if the source of the CRM lead is defined incorrectly. Another example: information about the customer was written in the comments to the tasks, and not in a special field.

Or you need to remove a lot of appointments.

If the system has accumulated more than a few hundred records with such errors, they can be processed with program code.

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: this task can be solved in the cloud version of B24. By the way, a customized business process in CRM will improve the quality of lead processing.

Getting leads in Bitrix24 from the website, email, calls. Source tracking

All of the above can be customized. Leads coming from web forms, from sites on Bitrix, from Open lines are formed by themselves. Integration with the mail is working.

In this case, the solution of the problem is almost free.

But sometimes you need to organize getting leads from some unusual system (the simplest example is a site without pre-installed integration).

It is necessary to investigate the source, determine the format, program and test. 

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: Bitrix24 email-tracker can facilitate the acquisition of data. Automatic addition of incoming messages to Bitrix24 Document management using an email tracker.

Common task. 50-300 hours of the programmer's work

Now let's look at the tasks of the next level - up to 300 hours of work. They are aimed at solving key business problems. For each such task, a preliminary investigation and a technical task are needed.

Migrating data from another CRM (SugarCRM, Megaplan, two others Bitrix24, tons of xls files)

There is a regular import of companies and transactions from csv-format in Bitrix24. And it works.

He has flaws. This import:

  1. creates records again. The old data is NOT updated, duplicates can be obtained;

  2. does not create relations between entities (for example, leads will not be linked to deals);

  3. requires data of a certain structure and does not work with others.

If you can unload the desired structure from your system or use an xls file, the whole import process will take 20 minutes. But most likely, standart import tool will not suit you.

There are no ready-made "migration masters", this task should be solved through research and development. You can rate this: 10-15 hours for each complex data type and 2-10 for each simple (for example, product reference).

The complexity will depend on how your data structure differs from the Bitrix data structures. If you can't directly compare the fields, you will have to do conversions and additional operations.

Such migration is always an exploration and an adventure.

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: Bitrix24 email-tracker can facilitate the acquisition of data. Automatic addition of incoming messages to Bitrix24 Document management using an email tracker

Exchange Bitrix24 with SAP, Microsoft Dynamics CRM and data with Google Apps

Integration of Bitrix24 with SAP, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, any self-written system is possible. It requires a self-hosted version of B24, designing and development.

Possible exchange methods: writing modules for each system, transferring files, using web services, using a buffer database.

We can go on any of these path.

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: when integrating your system with Bitrix24, be prepared to provide many technical details: data types, protocols, direction of exchange.

Specific division of access between branches and divisions

Bitrix24 has a special version for companies that have many branches, departments and subsidiaries. It is called "Holding" and costs $8500.

By the way, the implementation of "many departments" in the "Holding" edition will suit not all. In particular, a common list of employees and unified CRM - is something from which many people want to leave.

Settings of staff access to tasks, files and CRM records Bitrix24 allow to solve most tasks. But not all.

The tasks of "clever sharing of accesses" can be the following:

  1. To forbid employees of branches to see each other and write messages in chats (we must say, it contradicts to ideology of an openness and transparency Bitrix24, but customers often want it)

  2. Share access to CRM records in a way that standard settings do not allow

  3. Share a live feed, some services and chats between departments (this can be done by holding)

  4. Remove some capabilities for some employees.

  5. Implement the "double subordination" of an employee or unit.

To solve such problems (if the standard access separation is not enough), it is necessary to make changes at a low level: edit modules and pages Bitrix24.

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: If you plan to change the system of rights - be sure to start with analytics and design.

Non-standard reports in CRM

Standard reports, sales funnels and the Bitrix24 designer are able to do a lot. But often you need non-standard reports, specific calculations, and sometimes access to external sources.

One simple report can be done in 10-20 hours.

But as a rule, customers want flexibility and versatility. As a consequence, the size of these tasks is very different.

In 2016, we had to implement similar systems of "non-standard reporting" three times. The complexity was 120 to 380 hours.

The same group includes attempts to "make as in another CRM". Most often, customers ask non-standard sales funnels for leads "as in bpm online": comparison of funnels, trigger mailings, advanced segmentation capabilities, geolocation in CRM.

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: The data storage structure and its source are primary. It is necessary to think carefully wh ere to get the data and wh ere to put it. Reports should be done when there is a lot of data and it can not be analyzed by "eyes".

There is a well-known sad case, when a rather complex system of operational reports on deals was developed. But the number of deals did not exceed 20 per month. Automation helps the head of the organization, and does not replace it..

A phased, configurable business process. Construction, store opening, multi-step transaction

The business process is often a sequence of steps. Fixed steps with a certain length.

If the process is always the same in structure (along with forks and conditions), then it is easy to do it on the basis of the designer of business processes.

20-50 hours and everything will work.

But sometimes Bitrix24 has to manage multi-step projects with variable terms, composition of stages and with relations. At first, the plans are agreed, then, when executed, the time frame is constantly updated. During this process, we track "Do we get into the schedule?".

Not standard settings, notifications, task transfer logic and change of responsible.

Examples of such processes:

  1. Construction of a residential building or commercial object

  2. Website development or a major advertising campaign

  3. Opening a branch or starting a new store

  4. Multistage deal (for example, with real estate)

The required pre-settings, reports and analytics require something more than the Bitrix24 business process designer.

Such tasks are solved by developing a special software module for managing a special type of business processes.

During the summer of 2016, we twice faced such tasks from customers and we are struggling with the temptation to automate the project management "for ourselves."

Estimate: to get an estimate of the solution of this task, please, share the article in social networks and fill out the form at the bottom of the article. We will send you a file with the estimate.

Important notice: before automation, it is necessary to "execute" the process many times on the basis of paper checklists, manual tasks and so on. We'll have to redo too much, if initially mistaken with the chosen path.

In the next part of the article, we will consider the most difficult tasks of modifying Bitrix24 and their cost. Keep for updates.

Integration of Bitrix24 with a call-tracking system (comagic example)

Commercial offers in CPM

Refinement of search on a disk, filters

“Calendar on the leads”, "planning the loading of specialists”

Installing updates on the modified corporate portal Bitrix24

Huge tasks. Starting from 300 hours of programming.

Solving the problems of this group affects the very foundations of the Bitrix system, it is extremely difficult to combine them with future updates. Their labor intensity is extremely high, and the accuracy of the estimate - low.

Such problems should be solved by the manufacturer of the system (1C-Bitrix) at its architectural level.

If this is not in the plans of the manufacturer, and the customer really needs - you can do.

Business automation

"We like the portal, we need to add these 50 sections". And 16 external integrations.

Redesign B24, we do not like the standard design

"We just like the design, and we need other functions"

CPM for retail

Resource accounting for tasks and projects, load forecasting for 3 months in advance

New entities in CRM and logic of working with them

Salary calculation, smart analyst

Automation of the call center (calls in queue, change the routing logic)

Document management

Billing (client's personal account, statements and details)

To get estimates of the complexity of all the described tasks, share the article in social networks and fill out the form below.
We will send you a file with the estimates.

You might be interested:

Bitrix24 implementation & customization

  • 19.09.2016