14 Jun Top 5 Practices to get the most out of your CRM
We have covered the topic of individual stages of software development and implementation before. Today we would like to focus on the top 5 best CRM practices that are going to make your daily tasks much easier after the system is already working. In order to get the biggest ROI (return on investment), you should follow some rules…
#1 Expand the system’s functionalities together with the growth of your organization
It is natural that you want to embrace the positive scenario where your company does well. In order to have that vision come true, you need a system that supports it. Having that in mind, we recommend you an Open Source solution. Its code can be adjusted to meet your specific needs at the beginning. It is also possible to move things around later after your organization has grown. Together with an agile approach to software development, it is easy to focus on the progress without the fear of outgrowing your own business procedures or the tools you have just paid for.
Our advice? Take into consideration the possibility of changing the software together with the growth of your own organization. Make sure you are using a solution that could be modified as your requirements evolve.
#2 Use automatizations wherever it’s possible
One of the key CRM purposes is making your daily tasks easier. But how are you going to fill it with all the necessary information? This sounds like a lot of time-consuming work. Well, not necessarily. As long as you weren’t storing everything in the old-fashioned and very dusty archive, doing it all manually is pointless. Thanks to an application programming interface called API you can transfer your data from other kinds of business software (ERP, marketing automation etc.) directly to your CRM. This should take no longer than a couple of hours. The good news is that it does not require your attention or involvement. Everything happens automatically!
Another type of automatization comes handy while filling in single customer’s data. Some time ago eVolpe introduced its own plug-in that with just a taxpayer identification number and through integration with The Central Statistical Office’s database creates a complete company’s profile. It was done for the Polish environment but depending on the requirements, it could be translated also for the international purposes.
An interesting trend for modern software solutions is making use of Artificial Intelligence. One of the most impressive examples is the one by SugarCRM Inc. The mechanism is called Hint and it works as an additional panel to the system. It helps the user browse the Internet for more information about the client, everything without leaving the application. It is integrated with many different online data sources (LinkedIn, Twitter just to name a few). It means that you are only a couple of clicks away from getting the most comprehensive information right where you need it and without any hustle.
#3 Use the analytical functionalities of the software
The CRM software collects and stores a lot of valuable information. As it is equipped with a powerful Reports module it allows you to analyze basically every aspect of your operations. Thanks to it you can undertake rational and supported by previous experience decisions. Therefore the CRM system should be used not only for gathering information about your clients but also as a tool in the process of managing the company. To our clients, we also recommend extending the standard system’s architecture by attaching a custom Prognosed Revenue module. It helps to estimate the size and the timing of the future income, and by extend – makes the budget management much simpler.
#4 Do not clutter your system with unnecessary bloatware
While working with the system it is important to take care of the database purity. There are mechanisms, which prevent unintentional duplicates. They have its uses when saving a record with the same E-mail address, phone number, last name etc. When the system detects an attempt to save a duplicate it immediately pushes a warning. Ultimately the choice is yours. If for some reason it is necessary to have two records with duplicated information, you can get around the pop-up and agree to create the record. Still, in case that was a mistake, there is a possibility to merge it back together.
The tidiness is a wanted trait not only offline but also in the way you keep your IT infrastructure. Apart from simply saving your team a lot of time, an organized database helps to build a positive Customer Experience. Make sure you keep your system it neat!
#5 Use plugins and integrations to connect your CRM with other types of business software
Your CRM software should become a part of broader system infrastructure. Just as the teams within your company, also the tools they are using should complement each other and be properly communicated. The most evident example of such approach is the integration between the Customer Relationship Management and Marketing Automation software. It is worth mentioning, that there is a plugin by eVolpe which connects Sugar or SuiteCRM and Mautic. It is available for download from the Sugar Outfitters platform. More about the benefits of cooperation between Sales and Marketing departments and the combination of both types of software here.
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