The development of new digital solutions over the past few years has allowed manufacturers to stand out amongst increasingly fierce competition. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is one popular solution for optimizing customer relationship management. What’s a CRM for manufacturing? What are the benefits associated with this software? This article will address these pressing questions.
What’s a CRM?
Every business, corporation or organization now appreciates the key role that the customer relationship holds in the development of professional activities. While it’s crucial to have productive teams, the use of digital solutions is also recommended for numerous reasons.
A CRM (acronym for Customer Relationship Management) addresses numerous issues related to this invaluable customer relationship.
What are the main features to look for?
CRM software comes with many useful tools. Regardless of the nature of your business, corporation or organization, some functionalities are more helpful than others for properly managing your customer relationship.
CRM software allows you to create online campaigns to maximize your return on investment by:
- Identifying the best textual content while analyzing the ideal periods for sending messages
- Integrating sales and analyses to target and convert every prospect
- Assisting in the creation and sending of messages based on specific channels that track target customers
The centralization of data naturally allows crucial information to be shared. Sales team members can then benefit from a comprehensive overview of the performance of a business, corporation or organization. Additionally, CRM software makes it easier to identify “good buyers” (customer relationship development). Lastly, the integration of artificial intelligence within CRM software allows professionals to identify ideal strategies and to implement them during the sales process.
Optimizing customer service
CRM software also serves to optimize customer service. This is evident in the following characteristics:
- Establishment of contact via your clients’ preferred equipment and channel
- Presentation of detailed analyses where cost reduction and service optimization are visible
- Decisive visibility of the clientele to guide your staff during proposals (personalization of proposals)
Organizing your technicians and distributing tasks are other sought-after functionalities in CRM software. Once again, the centralization of data in an online storage space allows employees to quickly access critical information. Improving services (deliveries) will inarguably strengthen clients’ trust.
Furthermore, the automation that comes with a CRM allows you to effectively match the skills of each technician depending on your needs. Lastly, geolocalization and live dissemination of information during an intervention strengthen the internal organization of a business, corporation or organization.
Optimal project management
To maximize the results of a business, corporation or organization, it’s essential to choose a CRM that includes project management functionalities. This way, you’ll be able to:
- Efficiently plan your projects and allocate resources
- Determine how time will be managed for each task
- Track billing and spending
- Generate reports
- Access a portal for collaborative purposes
Other equally essential functionalities
Besides the above-mentioned functionalities, CRMs offer other digital tools that are useful for professionals.
The automation of manual and repetitive tasks is a perfect example. This functionality offers convenience while also limiting entry errors and improving the reliability of analyses for each department (this is especially true for the sales team).
Intelligent management of sensitive data is another functionality offered by some CRM software. The identification of critical information allows customized strategies to be reviewed and applied.
Depending on their profile, a business, corporation or organization may prioritize other functionalities. Again, choosing CRM software is a crucial step towards guaranteeing optimal results.
How can I benefit from using a CRM?
What can a CRM bring to my business, corporation or organization? This most pertinent question has many answers. The following is a non-exhaustive list of benefits linked to digital solutions that are now considered essential.
Better client management with CRM software
Your relationships with your prospects and clients are optimized thanks to information provided every time a client is contacted. By displaying complementary data, a CRM allows you to personalize your clientele and gain their trust, all while giving them greater responsibility during buying decisions.
A CRM centralizes your data and makes it easier to access information
The centralization of pertinent data naturally makes it easier to access this information. With a few clicks, each department can quickly find accurate data that’s updated in real-time.
Optimized overall management
Functionalities related to marketing, customer insight, field service and sales, as well as other essential elements for every business, corporation or organization improve your sales and your brand image.
An ideal solution for increasing productivity and agility
Besides the many functionalities previously discussed in this article, you could also ask yourself the following relevant question: What are the concrete benefits of a CRM for my business, corporation or organization? Again, several answers may be noted:
- Better communication between each department and your prospects/clients
- Significant amount of time saved thanks to the automation of repetitive tasks
- More efficient employees
Maximize your sales figures and benefits
As you can see, the many features of CRM software offer significant benefits. Deploying Customer Relationship Management software will quickly boost sales while ensuring that costs are properly managed.
Specifics of CRM for manufacturing
Representing one-quarter of all global economic activity, the manufacturing industry is characterized by a continual need for re-invention and for increasing efficiency. To achieve these goals, it’s worthwhile to set up a CRM of manufacturing that’s tailored to this particular sector.
Build and strengthen relationships
Good business is built on solid relationships—with your clients such as distributors, or your partners. Choosing a CRM for manufacturing will enable you to maintain and strengthen these crucial business relationships. Furthermore, you’ll benefit from improved time management, allowing you to focus on growing your business. With a CRM for manufacturing, you can automate repeat orders, set reminders to schedule courtesy calls and follow up on new leads. You can also track emails and send automated newsletters. Streamline your customer relations via secure, confidential data sharing. Need a customizable, “big-picture” 360-degree view of your customer? A CRM for manufacturing can do that too!
Empower your sales team
The manufacturing industry is known for its long sales cycles, with high-value orders from repeat customers. This makes it all more important to maximize visibility into the sales pipeline—one of many features you’ll get with a CRM for the manufacturing industry. This tool will allow you to better visualize information, shorten your sales cycle and deal with unexpected issues as they arise.
The ability to instantly access records showing how reps solved similar problems means your sales team is better equipped to resolve cases faster, keeping your customers happier. Implementing a CRM for manufacturing is like getting a customizable, centralized switchboard that facilitates communication between your marketing, sales and customer support teams.
Give your marketing strategy a boost
A CRM for manufacturing has all the bells and whistles you need to propel your marketing strategy and grow your customer base. You’ll be able to sell faster while safeguarding quality through automating your sales processes. Tracking opportunities, digitalizing your content and catalogues, and managing your marketing campaign are some of the biggest benefits of implementing a CRM system. You can even set reminders for follow-up and manage new inquiries to solidify new leads more quickly. Increasing cross-sell and upsell opportunities will also help you maximize customer retention.
Clean up your field game
Once you’ve got your product out in the field, your job doesn’t end there if you want to maintain customer satisfaction. Selecting a CRM for manufacturing will help nurture your future sales by streamlining your processes, making product and distribution tracking easier. Ensure personalized customer service anywhere, anytime by improving support and service requests. Gaining easier access to your data means that you can dispatch support services to make problem-solving even smoother.
Harness the power of automation
Let automation do your work for you! By selecting a CRM for the manufacturing industry, you’ll reap the benefits of automated analysis and reporting thanks to AI (artificial intelligence). What’s more, you can integrate Power BI to get live analytics based on your CRM data. This allows you to anticipate your clients’ needs, track leads more easily and forecast customer demand and sales.
The various levels of data visualization that come with a CRM for manufacturing are one of this system’s major benefits. Users can get an overview of their entire pipeline or zoom in on specific accounts to analyze their data by customer or by product. You can also use performance analysis to identify your top performers as well as those that need more support.
How can I choose the best CRM for my business, corporation or organization?
Without any specific knowledge, selecting CRM software that’s customized for a business, corporation or organization can turn into a complex process. Therefore, it’s worth highlighting several characteristics that will help you decide and to choose the best CRM for your business.
To achieve the best results, you should have the option of personalizing every “detail” and feature of CRM software. While some solutions come with restrictive limitations, others properly fulfill this requirement (the Microsoft solution offered on our (Gestisoft’s) website is a perfect example).
Choose extensible CRM software
Dealing with deployments via the cloud or on-site can satisfy certain needs that are particular to a given business, corporation or organization. Additionally, a CRM must be compatible with other platforms and software, such as your architecture software, your ERP software, etc.
Set security levels for each user
An effective CRM system allows you to set security levels for each user. By assigning them a specific “role”, you are authorizing the user to access, integrate or modify centralized information, or denying them these permissions.
Choose a scalable solution
Expanding a business, corporation or organization is obviously a major priority for professionals. Your current needs may therefore change. Effective CRM software will assist you as you scale up your professional activities while also allowing you to streamline every process on a daily basis.
The CRM ecosystem
The CRM ecosystem (or stack) consists of the set of tools that are directly (or indirectly) connected. For optimal results, this set-up should evidently be constructed gradually. Safeguarding client data (and prospects’ data) is essential to fully benefit from a CRM stack. Again, a CRM ecosystem will be shaped by your choice of software.
Entrust Gestisoft with implementing your CRM
When you’re ready to choose a CRM for manufacturing, keep in mind that you’re making a long-term investment for your office. Your choice of software needs to be a well-informed decision. At Gestisoft, we make this easy with our team of CRM and ERP experts who will guide you in making your purchase and support you in implementing your software. Contact us today to discuss your needs, we’ll work together to find the solution that’s most suitable for your professional situation.