Choosing the right CRM for your business
When organisations decide that it is time to invest in a CRM or business management system, it is very easy to go in the wrong direction
at a very early stage.
Many know that they need to up their game in the area of sales processes; they may want to build the connection between sales,
contract management and customer success; they may want to tie in inventory management and invoicing.
So, what is the right approach to buying a Customer Relationship Management platform that works best for your company?
And how can you avoid making those early mistakes that can become very costly further down the road?
These are the key questions to answer before spending the organisation’s hard-earned cash.
1. What do you want to do with it?
It is important to look both short, mid and long term at how you see your business developing and what requirements there are likely
to be for a CRM.
Many start with the need to automate and optimise the sales teams’ efforts, by tracking and monitoring lead generation and management.
But when you understand that a great modular CRM platform can incorporate activities ranging from marketing to sales, through to ongoing
management of customers, invoices, and inventory, then it is worth building a plan – and buying the right CRM – to get you there over time.
2. What do you actually need?
The first step is to fix the biggest challenges you are facing and build your CRM strategy and implementation based on the business’s
requirements. Prioritise effectively, while always considering what the follow-on investments will be.
Think about the bigger picture, but then start small and go gradually.
3. Engage your key stakeholders
No-one knows your organisation’s problems, foibles, and inefficiencies better than your own people. Get the right ones engaged at an
early stage, to provide the guidance and feedback to help build the right solution, so that they can get their work done better. Employees
hate to work in an inefficient environment: they want to operate at the top of their game.
4. Engage the right consultants to help you make the right decisions
It is vital to work with the experts who know how different CRM systems work, how they can scale and grow over time to benefit your organization.
Many will be experts in your own niche area: the obvious examples would be legal and accountancy firms, where there are consultants with
specialist knowledge in those areas. But, say you are a veterinary company or chain: well, there are specialists for vets as well.
5. Pick a consultant and build an ongoing, long-term relationship
Getting the right CRM and installing it is not a quick-fix process and you should be looking to engage for the future, having an expert
who learns and knows your business and is able to make recommendations as you grow and expand. The only certainty is that your business
will change, so you want the right guidance to be able to move with it.
6. Pick the right tech stack
Working with the right consultant will help you pick the right tech stack. We are a Microsoft Dynamics 365 (and Power Platform) partner,
because we believe it is the best and most powerful business management solution on the planet, that can scale from a small number of users to 10,000+.
There are others, of course: Salesforce have built a portfolio of CRM products; HubSpot is well-known for marketing; Creatio is a low-code
CRM solution that is getting good traction in the marketplace.
Hopefully, this short guide on the right questions to ask, will help you go in the right direction at the start of your CRM journey.
Here at Solutions Shared, we are always happy to have a conversation with you about your CRM needs.
About the Author
Founder | Business Solution Consultant, Solutions Shared Ltd