CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a tool used to improve a company’s relationship to existing customers, as well as reaching out to new potential ones. These communication improvements are designed to enhance the overall quality of the customer experience. A CRM tool can also be used in the communication between business partners, sales customers and colleagues. Gathering all contacts in one single platform will provide a clearer and better organized work surface, from which numbers and valuable statistics can be easily obtained. If used with a project management tool, a CRM can provide new and more effective sale strategies without having to invest large amounts of money in conventional marketing research strategies.
Is a CRM tool the right choice for my company?
If the services provided by a company rely on regular contact with its customers, the implementation of a CRM is highly recommended. Such a system can be applied to all, or individual parts of the workflow. There are different options that can be considered, depending on the specific needs of each company:
- A CRM software can be used as an analytical tool for collecting and processing customer information: in this case, the system will acquire and evaluate all customer data (such as transaction data) and use this information to establish specific target group characteristics or migration tendencies.
- This data can also be used for implementing further marketing strategies, such as market segmentation. In this case a CRM tool should be used as an operational system.
- Communicative customer management relationship tools are designed to facilitate communication within the company and outside of it. These tools help to bundle the different channels through which customer contact takes place, such as telephone, e-mail or any other online medium. This way all information about the current communication status will be available to all relevant employees.
- Collaborative CRM can be particularly helpful in facilitating communication between departments and other internal processes, such as information exchanges with outsourced instances and sales staff.
What is to be considered?
There are a few relevant questions that need to be thoughtfully considered before implementing a CRM tool in a company. Which particular areas of the company could benefit from the CRM system? For which of these is the implementation of the system definitely necessary and for which optional? Which new strategies would a CRM system allow? Who will be entitled to access the system and how should authority levels be assigned?
Companies without an own server or IT departments should consider a cloud-based solution when choosing the right CRM system. This way the reliable functioning of the system can be guaranteed. Cloud-based solutions also offer more flexible options when it comes to accessing information. All stored information can be obtained on the road, during business trips or meetings outside of the company.