Customer relationship management software is big business. Designed to facilitate the process in which leads become prospects, prospects become customers, and customers become satisfied customers, CRM has long been a staple of the marketing and sales world—with good reason.
But why is it only sales that benefits from CRM use? Shouldn’t the entire business benefit from the visibility, understanding, and readily available information that is provided by this powerful tool? Of course. The problem, however, exists when CRM exists in a silo. Unfortunately, this siloing of information is what gave organizations the impression that CRM has always been just a sales tool.
Tighter Integration, Broader Use: How Integrated CRM Helps Everyone
In today’s software landscape, it’s easier than ever to connect systems. Open APIs, common languages between software, and workflows have allowed organizations to connect CRM to a variety of tools ranging from ERP to inventory, field service management, and more.
In turn, organizations are able to do more with the information they have, improving customer satisfaction, reducing costs, and gaining control of the way the business works. With connected CRM, everyone from the legal team to the warehouse manager gets to see the right information at the right time. Here are just a few of the business processes that are made easier when you move to integrate CRM with other solutions.
Forecasting Meets Inventory: Reducing Inventory Costs with Accurate Information
Inventory control is all about knowing how much you have, when you need to reorder, and ultimately staying ahead of your customer’s needs. Stockouts can be dangerous, overstock can be costly, and it pays to avoid either of these. Luckily, by integrating your CRM solution with ERP and inventory management, you can stay ahead of customer orders by tracking a customer’s buying trends and getting an even clearer picture of when you need to reorder.
Bring Everyone into the Quote-to-Cash Process
Over the past few months, we spent a bit of time exploring the quote to cash process, discussing how everything needs to flow perfectly to ensure customers are happy. Getting through all the steps will require you to understand customer credit limits, quickly generate an accurate quote, pass the transaction on to your legal team for review, and get the accounting taken care of.
An integrated CRM solution delivers this connection, automating the steps that go into building, negotiating, and finalizing a sale—all while keeping necessary parties in the loop.
Simplifying the Subscription Model
In addition to the Quote-to-Cash process, many companies have made a foray into the subscription model for certain goods. A model that can deliver consistent and predictable revenue for your organization, running a subscription program is often a challenge. In this, you not only need to rethink the accounting methods for subscription billing, you also need to understand customer behaviors and be proactive.
One of the biggest benefits to using an integrated CRM is this proactivity. Say you wanted to understand some of the risk factors that go into customer churn. Connecting your CRM with a business intelligence tool could help you to identify the common signs that a customer is going to let their subscription lapse. By connecting data across your organization, you can keep your sales team even more informed.
Customer Service and Field Service Made Easy
It’s likely that your customer success teams already gain a lot from the use of CRM, but how can you take this further? By putting the information you have about the customer to good use. Say a customer calls about a product issue. Maybe they need a technician out there immediately, maybe they just have a question. Either way, integration can put you in control, helping you to see exactly what equipment they have, matching the right person to the job, and ultimately getting from call to dispatch in much less time.
Many More Benefits Await: Connect Your Business with Help from MIBAR
Businesses of all sizes have turned to CRM software to track, organize, and improve their customer relationships. But those who connect this powerful application (or select a CRM built into the ERP) get even more from their efforts and investments.
As a leading provider of business management software in the New York Metro, we understand how to help your business do more with ERP and CRM solutions customized for your unique business. Get to know more about our company, the work we do with CRM, and contact us for more information.