Hill Laboratories (R J Hill Laboratories Ltd) is an analytical testing laboratory and a 100% privately owned New Zealand company. Hill Laboratories has over 300 staff distributed amongst 6 sites in New Zealand with several key accounts as well as thousands of smaller customers which have varying frequencies and volumes of orders. Hill Laboratories identified the need for a best of breed Customer Relationship Management System to better engage and understand their customers.

The Challenge

Hill Laboratories managed the relationships with its customers through a home grown, custom built Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) called LabSys. LabSys is a critical piece of software which drives the  operational side of the business but had outgrown its ability to provide more sophisticated customer relationship management.

Because LabSys is the centre of their operations, Hill Laboratories needed a CRM solution which integrated seamlessly.

Providing a system which pulled together the pertinent information about a customer’s jobs and all touch points with a customer to include phone calls, emails, and case management.

Implementation and Solution

  • Hill Laboratories selected Sugar CRM as their system because of its ability to easily integrate with LabSys.
  • Several custom modules were created to surface important information in relation to sales totals, jobs, and job activities by job code.
  • Bi-directional synchronisation was implemented between Sugar CRM and LabSys to ensure that both systems have the most current information about the customer.
  • Phone integration to include on-screen information about the incoming call, automatic call logging, and additional data collection after the call terminates.
  • Email integration with Gmail ensuring that all pertinent client communication is captured and available.
  • Automatic case generation based on existing business process within LabSys


  • Provide greater ability to segment types of customers by industry, buying behaviour, for marketing purposes.
  • Shared understanding of key account history and the ability to quickly come up to speed on a colleague’s account.
  • Ability to access customer information remotely via mobile devices while customer service managers are on the road visiting clients.
  • Ability to meaningfully collect and store customer feedback.
  • Provide management reporting to assess and identify customer issues early and address them in a timely manner.