I am looking for software that has similar features to CRM software, but is focused on tracking purchasing rather than sales -- to handle the pre-purchase process.

When doing genealogy and family history, the researcher often has to order documents from archives or libraries. It's not unusual for people to order a document, only to discover once it arrives that they had already purchased a copy and had forgotten they had done so.

Many of the features listed in the article What is CRM software? are also needed for this task:

  • Contact management to keep track of the addresses and contact information for archives, libraries, historical societies, other genealogy researchers and correspondents, etc.
  • Reporting and dashboards e.g. to aggregate potential document orders from the same repository
  • Instead of Lead management to find customers, I need to seek out places where I might find something I want to purchase.
  • Deals and Tasks -- I need to create prompts for following up on requests for information that haven't been answered.

The ideal software would have hooks to email or allow me to archive copies of past correspondence with a contact, and have hooks to common office software so I could attach associate research reports or spreadsheets to action items. I might be able to achieve some of what I want to do with a document management system by pre-cataloging the documents I want to acquire, if there is a status field which I can change to show whether the document is on order or if it has been received.

I do not need the program to interact with any of my genealogy software. I can handle the task of running queries to find missing data, and to plan research and sort tasks by repository with my current software. I can enter the information from those reports into a project manager by hand.

My primary computer is Win 8.1 (which I plan to upgrade once Win 8.1 is EOLed) but I also have some familiarity with Linux. Unfortunately, I don't have the budget for a high-end package like Goldmine, which I'm already familiar with, or I would have bought it already and kludged for the purpose. I prefer a desktop-based solution to a cloud-based solution because I don't have reliable access, and I'd rather make a one-time purchase instead of having an ongoing expense. Something low-cost (less than $100) would be ideal.

Should I re-purpose a CRM made for sales, or does specialized software for purchasing departments already exist? Or would project management software be more appropriate for what I want to do?

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