Since the inception of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) in the eighties, many businesses have thrived because they were successful in maintaining client satisfaction through this strategy. CRM has evolved, from simple collection and analysis of customer information used for future communication with potential clients, to a cloud-based, interaction-focused management of all business relationships.
In essence, the primary purpose of CRM is to provide a means and structure to gain information about customers to understand and satisfy them even more. But due to increasing business complexities, it was necessary to integrate several processes that are part of performance management, sales and marketing, and customer service to bridge the gaps in delivering the best product or service that would improve profitability. CRMs nowadays are customized according to business needs.
Many companies have benefited from such CRMs. One such company was DecisionOne, the biggest provider of technology support services in North America. In just a year, it has generated an ROI of 1150% because of customized CRMs that fostered not only automation and analytics but also of collaboration within the organization. Here are ‘before and after' scenarios.
- No real-time data available about customer and prospects
- Data not readily available that resulted in confusion and miscommunication
- Account teams could not collaborate effectively
- Real-time updates on client and prospect information became available
- Account teams were able to access data and collaborate as well as provide customer service in real-time
- Team efficiency significantly improved
- Senior management gained valuable insight on sales and leads, and leaders were able to make revenue forecast and other important decisions
- Tracking of customer information made possible and done in real-time
- A customized online training was made available to sales team
- 68% of deals with new clients closed
- Value of add-on deals increased by 78%
Another success story is that of a multinational company based in India called Dr. Reddy’s Laboratory, which also manufactures and distributes about a hundred types of drugs in the US and other countries. It also attested to CRM solutions fostering automation and collaboration that led to profitability. Here are ‘before and after’ scenarios in this company.
- Lack of management control among branches across the globe reflecting lack of collaboration and teamwork
- Details and results of interaction with prospects and clients are lost in emails or an employee's electronic file
- Increased tendency to be dependent on an individual for a particular information
A CRM provider was able to integrate performance management and sales analytics with their CRM, and the results are:
- User-friendly website for both customer and employees
- Comprehensive real-time data on customers made available through a unified electronic platform
- Collaboration with team members, branches and clientele alike became active, which led to long-term customer relationships
- Enabled the sales team to look into client problems and come up with customized solutions
- Increased number of leads
- Increased profit
These two companies have exemplified that CRM solutions can be an effective way for information to be entered, analyzed, interpreted and made readily accessible. When there are transparency and efficiency within an organization brought about by CRM, collaboration becomes efficient, and productivity and profitability follow suit.
The healthcare industry can learn from these companies. In our realm, when lack of communication is a gaping wound to patient outcomes, there is a need for a collaboration platform especially during transitions across different levels of care. Even different EHR systems employed by various providers and other electronic means become barriers as health care workers struggle to maximize the many applications and emails. A unified system similar to CRM solutions can improve work culture and foster safety, quality, productivity.