In order for a business to succeed, it needs to create the proper relationships with a variety of parties. From their clients and customers, to their vendors, to other businesses they work with, the average business has a lot of contacts they need to manage - which is why a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application is so valuable.
Let’s go step-by-step and examine a few different scenarios that a CRM can help you avoid.
Communication is critical, regardless of the business in question. Take a few minutes to consider how much communication is likely happening in your business, and the issues that could get in its way.
Naturally, a lot of this communication is happening between your business and your clients. Look at it from their perspective for a moment - have you ever worked with a business that, if you were to reach out to different departments, you would have to repeatedly provide them with the same information? Not to confirm it, but actually give it to them for their department’s records?
It can be a real pain to have to do so - and doesn’t exactly give the business your vote of confidence, does it? Internally, communication is crucial to keep information spreading appropriately, so all involved people have access to the information they need, such as when a client was last called, and what was discussed. A CRM allows your employees to access this kind of information, allowing them to provide a better service and generate a better impression.
Based on the products and services that a given business offers, they may work with the same clients over and over, or it may see a variety of different clients. However, there is one thing that they all share: each one of your clients and customers is seeking to have a given need or responsibility fulfilled, in a timeframe that is reasonable to them.
Therefore, part of your job is to spot these patterns and, as often as possible, use them to proactively meet (or prepare to meet) the expectations of the client.
A CRM can help, as you can use it to track your customers’ behaviors, identifying trends and timeframes as the data is captured. This allows you to anticipate the behaviors of similar clients and provide them with improved services. So, if Adam, Larry, and David all want to sign up for a given service after each of them experienced a similar event in their businesses, chances are pretty high that Paul will want to do the same. The CRM can help you predict when that will be, allowing you to prepare for it.
When a business is first getting started, chances are pretty high that it will be pretty small, which allows it to fall into habits that aren’t going to work once it grows a bit. Notes scribbled on scrap paper and buried in someone’s desk drawer aren’t going to be much help to someone else who needs that information to properly do their job. By implementing a CRM, you can avoid this issue almost entirely.
Assuming that it is put to proper use, your CRM can become your company’s very own database on the people you work with, built up and referenced by everyone with access. In this way, it’s a crib sheet that you can use to track your relationships and ensure that they are properly handled.
One more thing to think about - depending on the types of customers you do business with, you may fall under certain regulatory compliances. The GDPR, for example, empowers your customers to be able to request to be forgotten, which means you need to be able to thoroughly remove sensitive information you have on them. If you have been using spreadsheets across the company to manage your contacts, that it is going to be a lot harder to do. Most modern CRM systems have this in mind.
Walsh IT Group can help you put a CRM in place in your own operations. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, call (832) 295-1445 today!
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