You think it's time for you to implement CRM, and your company is not ready

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) - literally, this is a system that allows you to manage relationships with a client (but in fact, a client can mean both a sales channel and a channel for promoting goods and services of a company). In a broad sense, this is a kind of methodology, a tool that allows you to properly build the company's relationship with the outside world, leading to the desired business results. If you look from the point of view of software, this is an information system that provides storage and management of information, management of the company's relationship with the outside world.

To put it simply, with the help of CRM you can store manage and store information about leads, customer interaction history, orders, partners, sales channels, transaction sources, concluded contracts, sales territories, accounts, and generally about everything that relates to company interaction with the outside world. In fact, due to such a variety of customer requirements, business models, there are a huge number of offers on the market called the CRM system.

But first of all, at the beginning of the project of choosing a CRM system, you need to understand the processes of your own company and identify those areas of automation that the implemented CRM system should automate.

Why might your company not be ready to implement a CRM system?

A successful automation project means that business processes have already been invented and / or created in the company and will be invested in the form of software.

If your company does not have business processes and regulations, then automation may facilitate work in some way, but rather it will be the appearance that the company has stepped forward in its development. As practice shows, an attempt to automate poorly described, non-superimposed and undocumented processes leads to sabotage in the field. Sellers are reluctant to drive in information just to ensure that the manager receives reports on the "sales funnel" at the end of the reporting period, and in their hands CRM does not become a tool that makes life easier, but rather, complicates life.

If you try to automate the chaos, then you will have just chaos and an automated system.

Automation is needed in order to track data on the work of the sales, marketing, customer service, etc. departments in a convenient format and save time , as well as to make management decisions .

First of all, it is necessary to understand and describe what processes should be built up, how teams within the company should interact with each other, what reports should be summarized in order for this to serve as progress in the company, and then begin to search for a CRM solution provider.

You also need to understand that you can implement not only the classic version of CRM, which is more an accounting system - it stores a database of potential and real customers and the history of relationships with them, but also a more complex system, which is closer in functionality to the BPM system (more on that we wrote in the article ). Therefore, it is necessary to analyze the possibilities of integrating the process of managing customer relationships with other processes in the company. For example, you can not only track the request from the client, but also automatically invoice him, create a contract according to the template at a certain stage of the transaction or control the payment schedule .

In addition, it is worth thinking not only about data accounting, but also about their automatic management. For example, at a certain level of sales to a client, the system automatically transfers the client to new working conditions (an additional discount is provided), or a personal manager is assigned to him.

If a new employee has entered the post of general director of your client’s company, the system can automatically notify all employees working with documentation about this and, if necessary, create a task to receive the necessary documents from the counterparty (for example, approval of a major transaction).

It is also necessary to decide how and where you will place the acquired system. Least:

- You can buy a solution based on the SaaS model (this is usually called a “cloud solution” and mislead potential customers: the cloud is not only what is sold according to the SaaS model),
- you can buy a solution for placement on IaaS platforms (for example, Azure Market Place). And this technologically will also be a cloud solution in which you give the infrastructure to the provider, and the administration of the application is yours or you can transfer this function to the partner.
- Or you can deploy a private cloud at your place, and put the application there. It will also be a cloud solution - in this case you will have to administer both the infrastructure and the application itself.

“Cloudiness” is characterized by the way the application is hosted and the technology that lies beneath it, and not that the solution is available from the Internet or not, or you can go there through a web browser, or it is sold by the subscription model.

When choosing an application, you should first of all pay attention to how the provider offers the solution (the greater the choice, the less potential risks / business sensitive data), whether there is a possibility of migration between the SaaS model and placing the application in a public cloud.

When you need to implement a CRM system

If you can not cope with the data. You lose deals or cannot find information on customers or determine the most effective channels of attraction.

Spreadsheets, sticky notes with notes, notepads and e-mails will perfectly help at the stage of a nascent business, but only a flexible automation system can connect everything into a reliable information space that is convenient to use.

When you are inefficiently spending the time for employees to enter the same data into different systems. It will be correct if the data is entered into one system, and then transferred via the corporate integration bus to other systems. When planning the implementation of CRM, it is necessary to clearly distinguish systems that are systems with master data and organize integration.

You don’t understand how effective sales managers and your sales team as a whole are. It is important to be able at any moment to receive data on the results of the team's work (progress status of the process, sales funnel), regardless of whether the employees are in the office or not.

Employees do not have remote access to customer information. On the road, on a business trip or from home - you must have access to any information necessary for work.
To organize e-mail newsletters, employees spend a lot of time. The CRM system allows you to segment customers by various parameters, create intelligent sales territories and organize mailings according to certain rules, which significantly reduces the routine.

Your customer service department does not live up to expectations. It is quite difficult to earn customer trust, and if the customer service department is not working at the proper level, you will not be able to keep them and increase the customer’s life cycle.

Your marketing and sales teams do not work together. The two teams often blame each other, but it’s important that they work in tandem to build a business effectively. Management should know how much it costs to attract each client, on which transaction it pays off, which channels are most effective. This data allows you to get only the simultaneous automation of marketing and sales processes.

Your employees spend a lot of time reporting. Automation allows you to quickly upload reports according to specified algorithms and a customized schedule.

The company significantly increases the staff. Managing processes is becoming more difficult, transparency is decreasing. Scaling up is easier when the management model is compact, simple, and scalable.


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