3 Easy Ways To Improve CRM Use
One of the common battles we see organizations face when implementing or adopting a new CRM system is determining the correct way to use the system. One of the best ways for companies to improve CRM adoption is to effectively contour the system to the company. This means allowing the CRM system to fit sales and service processes, and work in a manner that supports proper organizational processes. However, many organizations fail to realize several key practices when doing this; which often leads to poor adoption and misaligned software.
Many businesses assume that once they purchase the CRM software licenses that they can simply install the software, and that it will perform all of it’s intended functions naturally inside of their organization. While this may sound naive; it’s actually the way that most popular CRM software publishers, like Salesforce and Dynamics CRM, market the software to organizations. Unfortunately, popular CRM software will not provide your organization with what it’s typically looking for out of the box. Organizations must improve CRM by modeling it inside of their organization to get it to work optimally.
Most businesses purchase CRM with the idea that it can support and uncover new sales opportunities, provide a record of truth for executives, and support service functions. But, consider this. How will a software system like Salesforce know to align itself to a sales process that best fits your organization and eliminates redundant and counter-intuitive processes? How will it know what to track and what to monitor to ensure records are kept in a way that reveals truth about opportunities and business practices? How will it inherently know what process your service department uses, or should use to best optimize it inside of your organization. The answer is, it won’t.
Below are three key tips to improve your CRM that take these questions in to account.
3 ways to improve CRM
Align CRM to your sales process and eliminate unnecessary practices
- Think about how a sales person operates. What is their primary motivation? It’s to sell; not utilize software. It’s imperative that the CRM operate easily, so that it feels more like a tool, and less like big brother.Now, ask yourself: Are you using CRM system as a digital babysitter? Are you asking your sales team to record every single action, conversation, phone call, and stop they make? If so, chances are that you didn’t mean to; however this is incredibly common, and leads to poor adoption and improper use among many companies that we see operating today.
- Here’s the way one of our executives, Bryan Sapot, recently described this anomaly, “If your quotas are based on the number of dollars added to a pipeline each month, does it really matter how those dollars (assuming they are real) got there? If you have a salesperson who is better at building relationships and closing deals face-to-face, do you need to track the number of cold telephone calls they made, as long as they are making their numbers? Probably not. By using the CRM to track minutiae that may not matter to your actual sales process, you are probably frustrating your salespeople, and driving yourself crazy policing inconsequential behaviors. Salespeople will begin to game the system, filling their activity logs with junk. This will erode your trust in any of the data they enter.”One recurring theme that we have seen in successful implementations of CRM is that firms track only the necessary information, not every single action. In fact, at Datix, we only start behavioral tracking with “significant conversations” that have a compelling reason for further communication with the potential client. It doesn’t matter how many meetings or calls the sales team makes to achieve the number of significant conversations in their quota, so we don’t bother keeping track of those small details.
Build dashboards that executives can use
- Gone are the days of IT pulling all the reports and printing them for executives. When it comes to sales and service, leadership needs to be able to monitor how the things that truly affect business are operating on a day to day basis. Having dashboard that are easy to understand makes this a reality. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for organization to offer no executive dashboards to their leadership, or ones that are both complicated or unhelpful. Find out what information is vital on a daily/weekly/monthly basis to executives and build dashboards around this material.
- Often organization won’t even know what information is vital; which is the reason they are installing CRM in the first place. If this is the case, it should create an even greater urgency around defining the sales process and aligning it to the CRM software. They will create a general layout for what makes actions successful. These metrics can be used as an analytical starting point. Organizations that are struggling in this area should consider reaching out to a partner to aid in this process.
Train each department accordingly
- This seems intuitive, right. Of course you’re going to train the employees on how to use the software. However, there’s a big difference between capability and competency. Your employees may be trained to effectively accomplish tasks within the system, but can they do the things described above? Do they understand the why behind the way things are done? Do they understand that many of the tasks aren’t data entry.
- The tasks in the system are actually the process that your organization uses to accomplish it’s business outcomes?If you’re employee’s don’t understand why the system is being used and why it improving or supporting new business processes, how will they know if they are effectively using it correctly? If no one ever taught you how to dance, imagine what you might come up with in the name of effectiveness?
These tips are very simple, and are really just a starting point. Many businesses struggle with these common steps simply because it’s inherent to make these mistakes. Starting with the information above can be a good start that can improve CRM for your businesses.
If your business is interested in getting the most out of your CRM, or is considering implementing a new system, speaking with a Datix expert could prove extremely help. Feel free to reach out today.
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