The End User CRM Perspective

Not only do I sell Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, I am also an end user. As a salesperson, I find that CRM enables me to optimize my sales efforts with ease. With a few clicks, I can view my contacts, my accounts, my pipeline, my results. On a day-to-day basis, I can view my scheduled activities, including customer call backs or proposal tasks. I can view the current response to marketing’s campaign of the month and see which of my customers are interested. Add in a little customization, and not only am I viewing all of the above, but I can also profile my lead companies, search for new connections, view prospects on LinkedIn, and more. Yes, I find that CRM provides me with access to everything I need to do my job and more.

As a salesperson, I often talk with companies that enjoy all of the functionality provided by Microsoft Dynamics CRM, but then ask for a simplified view for its users, because of the overwhelming amount of information available. I find that reminding them of two things: role specific environments and activities, helps to keep users efficient, on task, and engaged with customers.

Role Specific Environments

Microsoft Dynamics CRM has many applications to many different departments in your organization. The flexibility and functionality is great to serve many different peoples' many different needs. For each individual, though, it could be overwhelming. Imagine if you were looking at your computer daily with information that did not pertain to your job. You would either ignore it, or most likely, start exploring those areas to see what they are about. This exploration, while well meaning, is a time waster that many companies cannot afford to have happen at the expense of their customers. So, during our CRM implementation consulting, we work with you to identify and create role specific environments in which your users can work. This can include removing the “clutter” that prevents you from working efficiently and effectively. It also includes customizing the functionality to meet each role’s needs, minimizing steps to get his/her job done. Bottom line: Combine “Less Is More” with “Work as I Work” to increase user adoption and satisfaction.

Activities

Another area that will keep your users efficient, on task, and engaged with your customers is activity management. With any customer or prospect interaction, there are next steps to be completed. For example, if a message is left, a scheduled call back is needed; if we speak to a customer or prospect, next step or action items are determined. Creating CRM activities – phone calls, appointments, emails, faxes, tasks, etc. – provides a quick and easy way to schedule these next steps and set a reminder for when they are due. With activities, I no longer need to remember what to do; I schedule it and forget it. The best part of tracking activities includes the capability to associate them with the Account, Contact, Opportunity, or Lead, respectively. Creating activities keeps me on task and engaged with my customers, as I promised them I would. The activities also create efficiencies for an organization and an individual.

As a user, having just these two capabilities makes my ability to work efficiently and effectively a breeze. I am not a fan of task management, but when I make a commitment, it is my responsibility to follow up as promised. Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps me stay on task and can help you as well. The ROI for you: increased productivity, efficiencies, and effectiveness of your staff.

By Kevin Brown, Ledgeview Partners – Wisconsin based Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner serving the Midwest and Heartland regions

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