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5 Steps to Improve Utilization of Your CRM System

5 Steps to Improve Utilization of Your CRM System

ATOLLO_ARTICLE | Obchod a marketing | 18/04/2012


Did you purchase a CRM system, only to have your colleagues not use the system often enough or as it was originally intended? Are you having trouble motivating people to take advantage of your CRM system? Do you suspect that you are not benefiting enough from your CRM system?

If you want to raise the efficiency of your CRM system, below are five tips on how to improve the use of CRM tools as a support element in increasing customer turnover, improving customer service, and more efficiently executing contracts and projects.

1. Familiarize users with how the CRM system works.

Often the use of a CRM system gets stuck at the very beginning. Some users may not be as computer-literate as necessary to navigate the system. Even if users do not have a problem with using the software, they may not be clear on what is expected from them in regards to the use of the CRM system. In this case, it is advisable to draw up scenarios for the use of the CRM system, including possible creation of an operations manual or simple application wizard.

Creating a Business Case

Instructions should indicate what is expected to be filled out within the application (e.g., what data are required). Of course, if it is practical and appropriate, set required fields to allow for appropriate information to be monitored.

(Instruction example: business-case creation)

Meeting Arrangement/Presentation

Instructions should show the user how to schedule a presentation, whether some preparation is needed, whom to invite, and whether to monitor the verification of a meeting or whether the system will do it for them. It is also appropriate to indicate what form of reports is expected.

(Instruction example: entering the report from a meeting into the CRM system)

When creating a manual, using a simple ScreenSteps application has proved successful and is highly recommended. Manuals, as such, need not be limited to the separate use of applications, but can also describe (for example) conditions for successful communication with a client, an explanation of selected items, and information entered, etc. Users should not be overloaded with excessive details.

2. Base your evaluation of your colleagues’ activity on data from the system.

Arrange regular meetings with colleagues, at least once a week. Use those meetings to summarize the previous period, as well as to set new goals. If you want to keep an eye on the development of your firm’s business activities, such as the execution of contracts, billing, etc., it is a good idea to take reports from the CRM system with you to all meetings. These report overviews objectively measure the activities of colleagues during the selected period.

Your colleagues will after some time get used to your evaluation based on data received from the CRM system. You can report the “hard” data, such as the value of business transactions or the number of sent price calculations, the number of presentations, etc., as well as information about the business case progress, such as the number of meetings based on meeting reports. It is appropriate to show their own activity, monitor corporate communication, and assist or appropriately intervene into the communication with the client (on a daily basis).
You can also use the Dashboard to more effectively involve users, including informing your colleagues about new contracts and projects. This helps everyone create a unified vision, thus allowing all colleagues to provide input on effectively acquiring clients, selling products, etc. Performance metrics included in the Dashboard provide complete activity transparency, which positively affects team motivation and performance. 

3. Use an integrated e-mail communication.

Using integrated e-mail communication is a great asset for business and customer relationship management. Integrated e-mail communication is an integral part of CRM solutions, as it facilitates archiving e-mail communication (both incoming and outgoing) in support of the business case. This makes it possible to intervene during the course of business cases, even before a problem arises. In this way, you won’t lose the customer because of “tampering” by a trader, technician, or consultant.
Integrated e-mail communication also facilitates the involvement of all team members in various roles during customer acquisition. Anyone who has access to a business case has an idea of the entire business transaction or contract and may respond to certain project requirements and contribute to the project’s overall success.

4. Direct all client requests into the CRM.

Whether a client request comes by e-mail, telephone, the Web, or during a meeting, it is necessary to document client requirements in the CRM system, allowing for detailed progress tracking.
Within the CRM solution, it is possible to build performance measures around specific tasks and then track specified solutions. If a request leads to a new contract, users can create business opportunities from the request. The portal helps to aggregate all the requirements heading to the firm. The Atollon portal, which is easily connectible to your CRM system, also allows your clients to follow the requests.

5. Stop the user from working outside the CRM.

Try to avoid having CRM users create records in Excel or other tools outside the CRM system. If complete transition of data to your CRM solution can’t be completed immediately, work on this process gradually. Users should not have an alternative for the CRM agenda. If your employees continue to maintain their customer database in MS Outlook or other personal contact databases and tables and the majority of communication with a client goes beyond the CRM system, you cannot expect your CRM system to perform to its fullest potential.

A first-rate CRM system will support trade, provide information for staff evaluation, and keep company data in a clear format within one place. In particular, your CRM system should allow for the provision of excellent services involving all parties, including your clients and partners.

In addition, if your company currently utilizes several solutions that incorporate multiple systems, it might be a good idea to replace multiple instruments with a single system. A comprehensive, consolidated CRM system will help you support marketing, sales, service, and billing and operations, in some cases. By bringing all your teams into a single system, you will be better able to focus on the needs of your customers.
If you want to learn how Atollon can help, do not hesitate to contact us, we will provide you with information about our customized CRM approach.