The Times, They Are ‘A Changin’

5 Minute Read

It’s not news that the world of technology is changing. Anyone who operates in our society today is very aware of how technology continues to evolve and become increasingly integral to our lifestyle, professions, and even our health. The article below walks through some situations that you may be familiar with and highlights how modern Customer Relationship Management systems (CRMs) are able to enhance typical business operations.

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One Location for ALL your Client or Account Information

The Situation: Sally from Sales is wooing Larry, a new lead, but doesn’t record their multiple calls and emails in the CRM. Mark in Marketing is unaware this conversation is happening, so includes Larry in the next marketing campaign. Larry receives an email asking him to reach out and begin a conversation.

The Problem: Larry is confused and unimpressed, because the conversation has begun, he’s been talking with Sally. Sally is annoyed that Marketing is confusing Larry. And Mark thought he was just doing his job.

The Solution: Modern CRMs link to your communication platforms, like Outlook and even your phone system, and instantly log communications or activities with people in your CRM. With the click of a button, you can track all communications, appointments, and even phone calls to that contact’s record from that moment forward. Then, when any person – or any Marketing campaign builder – references that contact record, they will have the full story of what has happened with that client and can act with the full picture in mind.

Headquarters is Where the Heart Is

The Situation: Sally from Sales was promoted to District Manager and inherited a sales force of 50 people, all of whom work out of the office, constantly on the move. Luckily, they have a solid sales process built within their CRM. The catch: salespeople need to log into their computers and use a specific browser to update client information within the CRM to move a sale through the process.

The Problem: Sally’s CRM is too clunky to operate in a mobile environment, forcing her sales team to carry around laptops and constantly pause during their day to find an internet connection, log in, and update their sales data.

The Solution: Modern CRMs seamlessly allow for mobile integration and customization. Whether you need access to the entire CRM on your phone, or just a single process or view, they allow for it. Further, modern CRMs provide this functionality “out of the box”, meaning that the additional cost to “get mobile” is nominal to non-existent.

Automation – It’s Not Just For Marketing Anymore

The Situation: Sally from Sales is amazing at her job and needs to send Larry, her lead, a new client contract. She navigates to the folder on her computer, opens the last contract she created, updates it with Larry’s information, and sends it off to him in an email. When the signed documents are sent to Andy in Accounts Payable, he notices that the address on the signature page is incorrect. Sally didn’t get it right. Now she must re-send the documents to Larry and request a fresh signature.

The Problem: Sally is not a computer, she’s human. And humans miss things. It happens all the time. We create a document from a template, update it incorrectly or miss something entirely. It could be as simple as dropping one character during a copy and paste, or a larger problem like Sally’s situation above. In any case, it does not need to be a problem anymore.

The Solution: Modern CRMs allow you to automatically create Word and Excel documents fully populated with client-specific information at the click of a button. Generate perfect quotes, contracts, and reports every time. Automation = Amazing!

Reporting That Will Blow Your Mind

The Situation: Charlie the CEO wants to know everything there is to know about his business and has a report from each department provided to him weekly. Report preparation takes time from each department every week, reading the reports takes Charlie’s time every week, and by the end of it he still has specific questions for the individual department leaders.

The Problem: Charlie should be able to talk to the data and have it provide the answers, along with charts, graphs, and projections. Generating reports takes time, and they may not address the current timely questions pertinent to your business. Generally, they’re also static, in that someone needs to run them at the appointed time. This is literally the opposite of dynamic, and does not provide a complete picture of what the business is doing at that moment in time.

The Solution: Modern CRMs easily connect to Business Intelligence (BI) tools, allowing businesses large and small to gain valuable insight from their operating data. These tools provide multiple ways to view business data and, once “taught”, can even answer your specific questions, such as, “Which sales manager closed the most leads in April of last year?” Yeah, it can literally do that.

Conclusion

CRMs have evolved to do much more than simply house all your client and account information. Yes, they are still excellent at that, but today they are much more comprehensive and can manage all your business operations, reporting, and even financials. The possibilities are endless, especially as these modern CRMs continuously update their capabilities at a delightfully rewarding pace.

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