CRM systems - should you have one?

Posted: 04/09/2017 00:00:00 by Rob Williams

In any business, the most valuable asset is argued to be the customer, but in many small businesses we come across, the management of the customer information is poor, often spread across multiple spreadsheets or worst still, on paper. As a business grows and increases it's customer base, and staff numbers, an inefficient system could bring you a whole host of problems.

In its most basic form a CRM is a database that contains all your customer information. It enables business owners to streamline their data, and ensure its available to all staff in their organisation.  Even if you work alone, a CRM is essential in knowing who your customers are, and keeping all their details in a single place.

A CRM should be the basis for all your communication with your customers and often a bespoke CRM will enable you to streamline and automate your processes to free up time to focus on gaining and converting more sales. Sending automatic reminder emails or texts is an efficient way to keep your customer informed, something you can really only achieve with a CRM system.

As an example, I've recently worked on a CRM system for Teachers to your Home - a large and talented team of over 3000 qualified teachers, who provide high quality home tuition across England and Wales. They started with spreadsheets, and as their business grew, processes started to take longer, with an average enquiry taking around 35 minutes to complete. We reviewed their manual processes and updated their CRM system to automate a large proportion of the enquiry process reducing the overall time to around 7 minutes. This has significantly increased their capacity to provide a faster, more efficient service to their customers, but also, has enabled them to process far more enquiries per day resulting in greater conversion rates.CRMs come in all shapes and sizes, and finding the right off the shelf package to meet your needs can be time consuming and often difficult.  A bespoke CRM is always going to be more expensive than using an off the shelf product, but the benefits far outweigh the cost difference and developing a bespoke product gives you total ownership and control over the development of your processes and the end product.

If you think you'd benefit from a bespoke CRM and are interested in how I can help you with that, please comment below or message me for an informal chat.

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