Customer Relationship Management, or “CRM” as most people know it, is that little acronym that loosely brands a wide array of software packages under the same, very large umbrella. The watered down “CRM” category is comfortably applied to a wide range of business applications which can range from sales force automation, call center management software and even to e-commerce storefronts.
“Front Office” CRM is the more classic depiction of a CRM application; and one that businesses are most familiar with. These “Front Office” CRM applications serve the masses in terms of addressing standard business-to-business (B2B) sales, marketing and service operations. The concept of “Front Office” CRM has served some businesses well, but in the same breath it has also failed many organizations resulting in costly implementations and the all too common negative return on investment.
A new era of CRM has emerged; one that is focused on relationship management. Some people in the industry call it “XRM” because the X factor (X = anything) can mean any relationship important for a business to manage information around. This paradigm shift from CRM to XRM takes the focus away from the vendor defined software application and squarely on a business solution form-fitted to an organizations specific need. This allows organizations to define the people, money and things as they relate to their organization. More importantly, organizations invest in a software platform where they can define the underpinnings of their business solution - one that works the way their business works, streamlines their unique operational workflows, and manages the specific relationships pertinent to their organization.
Microsoft is one of the few CRM software providers that will emerge as a market leader in this new era of relationship management. Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 embodies the concept of XRM since it’s ultimately a business platform that includes the feature rich CRM functionality for Sales, Marketing, Service and Analytics.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 is built on a very powerful and flexible platform that allows businesses to define their own “X” factor. For example, an Insurance agency focused on brokering employee benefit solutions would need to manage the relationships between clients, quotes, policies, carriers, policy rates, producers and commissions. A Christmas tree broker would need to manage the relationships between farms, trees, truck distributors, retail locations and orders. A Wealth Management firm will need to manage relationships between clients, portfolio accounts, legal instruments and family relationships.
With Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, businesses are able to cost-effectively configure a rich business application in line with their own specific needs, internal nomenclature, and unique workflows. This will result in a significant return of investment (ROI) across the organization, not just within department silos.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 is also seamlessly integrated with Microsoft Outlook. Interacting with the information stored in CRM / XRM right from within Microsoft Outlook improves communication, increases productivity and creates a connected organization so you can best manage the relationships most important to your business.
This next generation of CRM is highly flexible, affordable, and familiar and