Written by Charlie Shaw on 27th March 2020
It’s been easy for businesses to convince themselves that they don’t need a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system; that lead marketing tools, social interaction or pipeline apps are simpler and easier to implement. However, the current global health emergency has forced your teams to become virtual and isolated. The lack of central customer or prospect relationship information has become real – and your customers are noticing. But implementing effective, integrated CRM can be quick, cost-effective and can energise your virtual business.
CRM is an essential component for an effective virtual business
The current global health emergency has exposed many businesses that have relied on traditional face to face processes. I still hear the old gem about “I don’t want my sales team using CRM, I want them to spend more time in front of prospects and customers”. The truth is that this model had already changed – your prospects and customers already preferred more efficient channels in most cases, but now the issue is more focused. And now, the workplace has moved to the home for many.
We have actually experienced an easier route to accessing decision-makers during the lockdown period. Perhaps the efficiency and control of a virtual meeting is attractive to them and may continue to be a preferred channel well after the current crisis subsides. Integration between the source of your data – CRM – and, say, Teams is ideal for personal productivity.
The technology required to run an effective virtual business has really come together in the last year or so. Key to a virtual office solution is that it is accessible from anywhere so that your team can always “be in the office” from wherever and on any device. But while the underlying technology is essential, the information and structure of a good CRM is an essential component.
What does CRM add?
Multi-channel customer sales and support access points:
CRM solutions are regarded by some companies as just a sales and marketing tool and not a business-wide tool. But when you introduce a CRM system that has been more widely integrated into operational processes then it serves the whole business as the central source of customer, prospect, project, and supplier information.
The trend towards website integration, Live Chat social communication and web meetings makes the process much slicker which is essential during times like these. Gold-Vision CRM consolidates the various points of communication that you have across the business into one Correspondence view, allowing your team to understand what’s going on and when – helping them to work and communicate effectively.
Point solutions, such as pipeline or project apps simply miss the crucial communication information, leading to potentially wrong decisions, dissatisfied customers or missed sales opportunities.
Streamlined virtual processes with defined workflows:
If your teams have been launched into isolated virtual working without preparation, it’s often the simple day to day internal interactions that become time-consuming and deviate your team from outward-facing and revenue-generating customer service activities.
Individuals can quickly lack the comfort and direction provided by an office environment. A well-implemented CRM, integrated with your core office systems will already have the key processes defined, perhaps with automation in place to work just as effectively when your teams are isolated. Leads get allocated quicker, sales are managed to closure, customer issues get dealt with faster and projects continue to get delivered using virtual technology.
Security and privacy of data:
Of course, putting data out there for your remote users to access requires the use of a proven solution with proper access controls – perhaps 2 Factor Authentication. But there are commercial privacy issues as well. Many contact management, sales forecasting or marketing apps don’t provide team structures to segment the data, making only the right data visible to the right teams, whilst still allowing overall views for management teams. An effective CRM solution takes this in its stride, removing concerns.
How long will implementing CRM take?
CRM has proven itself over the years to deliver tangible results, and it can be delivered quickly and efficiently. It will not surprise you that we have refined web planning, implementation and training services to get your business working effectively in a matter of days. Should you consider Gold-Vision CRM, you can rest assured that you’re working directly with the software author and their specialist implementation team. You will not have to go through partners and our implementation focuses on your specific business processes – not just a library of getting started videos! Our team has a proven track record of successfully delivering solutions remotely, but personally.