5 Things You Need To Know Before a New CRM Implementation
Now that your business is growing and reaching out to a greater customer base, certain questions are likely to cloud your mind. For example, "how do we clearly understand the needs of our customers?", "is there a way to streamline business operations?", "can we have an integrated platform to track all our processes at once?" and "how are our services faring in the market; is there any room for improvement?”. Fortunately, the answer to all these questions could be “yes”, if you have a powerful CRM system to rely on.
The Importance Of Implementing the Right CRM
Going with the trend and choosing the most popular CRM used by industry leaders could backfire in your case. This is because, even though your target audience is the same as your competitors, your company goals, long-term mission, experience, and core competencies could be very different. In order to fully capitalize on the capabilities of a CRM solution, you must have a clear picture of the reasons why it is being implemented in the first place. According to reports, about 70% of CRM implementations fail because companies aren't clear about how they can be used most efficiently.
Unlike traditional software, CRM systems can automate every single task that is delegated to it on a single platform. This implies that you will no longer have to maintain multiple standalone systems and applications to ensure that every operation is running on time and devoid of any mistakes. Investing in a costly CRM system doesn’t guarantee success. It is only through solid planning and understanding of your business goals that your CRM implementation will start reaping benefits.
5 Things You Must Know Before Implementing a New CRM
#1 - The Processes That the CRM Will Be Handling
First things first, you must know if the CRM is implemented successfully, what are the processes that it will tackle, and the ways in which it could be helpful. Determine the metrics for generic tasks such as lead qualification process, tagging leads as opportunities and delineating services and warranties. After you have a transparent picture of these factors, analyze whether or not the CRM system you have your eyes on is fitting in well.
The initial focus of a new CRM implementation might be automating and streamlining tasks but, in the long run, the aim should be improving the overall operational efficiency. This is fairly why CRM experts suggest companies recognize the processes that can be effectively simplified if the system is implemented. A trustworthy CRM expert can ease your day-to-day activities and concerns related to the functionalities of the system post-implementation.
#2 – Integration With Existing Applications
Implementing a new CRM system that standardizes operations and offers a 360-degree view doesn’t imply that the existing systems will have to be replaced altogether. In fact, integration of the existing applications must be on the top of your mind. Without this, you would have set aside a higher chunk of resources for additional maintenance and compliance and run the risk of losing crucial files and data, therefore, compelling you to start from scratch.
A robust CRM such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 is capable of integrating with the existing Office 365 applications that most organizations commonly use. It can automatically sync all the data available with your company, present them on interactive dashboards, and allow access to the reports in real-time from anywhere and at any time. One of the biggest factors that influence operational sustainability and resilience is business continuity. Losing track of the customer information recorded in your databases and inventory could make way for irrevocable financial pitfalls.
#3 – Learn About the Key Features Of the CRM
When there are innumerable options to choose from, the best way to ensure that you are implementing the right system is by learning and comparing the key features of the CRMs. In most cases, these are some of the features that characterize CRM systems.
- Data Standardization
- Data sorting and analytics
- Demand Forecasting
- Customer Engagement
- Lead management
- Collaboration and communication
The good news is, you can customize your company’s CRM system in the most suitable manner possible. The bottom line is, all these features, when combined, will boost the productivity of your business operations, and accelerate lead conversions and improve customer engagement and retention rates.
#4 – Know If Your Team Is Ready
One of the biggest reasons why organizations are failing to make the most out of digital disruption is that their employees are not familiar with the newly implemented technologies. Thus, it goes without saying that you should have a CRM system that offers equal access to information to everyone in your team and spares them the necessity to juggle between multiple data points.
Acquiring a CRM system that can be configured with different solutions with little to no coding at all can be a plus point for your workforce. Instead of calling for external support every time there is a change in plan, your employees can set it up themselves. A potent and scalable CRM such as Dynamics 365 can take automatically take care of all the afore-mentioned tasks and much more sans the technical complexities.
#5 – Clean Your Data
Before implementing and switching to a new CRM, it is preferred that you browse through your existing database to ascertain that there are no unnecessary shreds of information. Cleaning and sorting data might appear to be a time-consuming process but, this will save you a lot of time and resources in the near future.
Get your entire team on board and start improving data accuracy before moving to the new system. Implementing a CRM system that is equipped with the latest data means your organization is capable of operating the system at its highest potential.