Previously on this blog, I’ve outlined some of the ways project managers can benefit from Microsoft Dynamics CRM and an XRM approach. So I thought it might be useful to give you a real world example of how CRM has been implemented in a civil contracting company and, with the help of IPM, is now providing very real results.
In 2010 an Australian based civil contracting company approached us looking for a better way to track projects, progress claims, and documents. Civil Contractors Australia Pty Ltd manages the construction of earthworks, roads, hydraulics services, stormwater, potable water, sewage, and conduits for power and telecommunications and needed
We showed them IPM, which is built on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM framework and encompasses all of CRM’s features, such as Outlook integration, workflows, and email tracking. They were impressed with the combination of IPM and CRM which would be able to help them manage document control, version control, and consolidate all their documents in a central database, while at the same time providing access from desktops, laptops, and hand held devices.
Having now implemented both IPM and CRM, one of the main benefits the organization has found with IPM is cost control. As IPM is built on Microsoft CRM, it can also make use of ERP integration to integrate all the financial information stored in the IPM database with the accounting system. As Civil Contractors Australia Pty Ltd has found, all the cost information in IPM is accurate and fully synchronized with the accounting system, so they can easily call up what costs are going through, where they are, cost forecasts, and projected final costs – something that has proved very valuable to the organization in managing its business.
The use of IPM within Microsoft Outlook has also proved invaluable to the organization in implementing the software for engineers and project managers who had previously persevered with Excel. The user friendliness of Outlook integration has resulted in a large user adoption of IPM, and has also increased the effectiveness of IPM’s central database of project information as more employees are able to contribute to and retrieve information from the database.
Civil Contractors Australia Pty Ltd’s experience with IPM is a good example of how an XRM approach can help organizations in different industries not necessarily directly targeted by CRM. By customizing and building on top of Microsoft CRM, IPM Global has been able to provide companies in the AEC Industries, such as Civil Contractors Australia Pty Ltd, all of the fundamental elements of a project management software solution with the features of CRM.
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By Reef Fielding, IPM Global: the creators of IPM –