Many organizations at first are excited to receive RFPs or RFIs because they know they have an interested prospect and the potential to close a deal. However, the act of collaborating and responding to the RFPs can be quite painful and time-consuming, especially if a firm does not have stored content and templates in place to more efficiently search and respond to common, yet complex and lengthy questions. Though a firm may successfully scramble to return the RFP, there is still no guarantee that it will win the business. In particular, asset management firms are typically flooded with RFP requests on retail, institutional, and alternative investment products. In many cases, the name of the interested party may not be disclosed to the asset manager until it has been thoroughly screened for possible conflicts of interest and deemed to be suitable enough from an investment strategy and performance perspective. Often, the prospective shareholder may not even be revealed until well after the initial RFP stage and into the semi-finals or finals. Due to the RFP’s tight deadlines, extremely long, detailed questions, and numerous named and unnamed stakeholders, asset managers do struggle at times to effectively track, prioritize, and monitor the progress of the RFPs they receive.
Incorporating the RFP process into the Opportunity pipeline management functionality of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 is a great way to ease the burden of tracking numerous RFPs across multiple divisions and investment offerings. Firms that are currently using Excel for RFP tracking will experience significant gains with CRM, some of which I have highlighted in the following table.
Common Asset Mgmt RFP Tracking Pain Points
MS Dynamics CRM 2011 Solutions/Advantages
|Executives have to request that someone email them a pipeline spreadsheet report, which may not even be up to date||Real-time pipeline results can be viewed by executives whenever they so desire in CRM – even directly within their Outlook.|
|IT has to recover the pipeline spreadsheet that was mysteriously deleted from the “G drive” on the corporate network.||Real-time pipeline results along with supplemental charts and role-based dashboards are available in a centralized CRM solution for all users without the help of IT.|
|Sales management is frustrated at not knowing what is going on with all of their RFPs and all of their other high-profile deals.||All deal details and forecasted information is immediately available in CRM. Opportunity pipeline lists and charts allow for easy filtering and drill down by prospect, sales rep, product, deal size, source firm, or location, among others.|
|Sales reps type in the name of the targeted product in 5 different ways due to numerous typos, conflicting abbreviations, flip-flopped words, and missing names, thereby distorting report groupings.||CRM option sets and lookups guide and ease the user experience and facilitate more consistent data entry and flexible customization going forward; sales reporting results are more accurate.|
Overall, CRM gives all users real-time visibility into the current status of the RFP and more details on the client/prospect, estimated AUM, estimated fees, estimated revenue, and sourcing firm as those are learned and forecasted. Marketing and Client Service personnel, who receive and predominantly respond to the RFP early on, can then further qualify the deal and reassign it to the appropriate channel and sales rep so that they can work the deal going forward and prepare for the finals presentation. Furthermore, sales management and executive leadership will have immediate access to the pipeline lists and charts at any point in time as seen below.
If you are an asset management firm looking to reduce your manual tasks and improve your operational efficiencies in the areas of RFP tracking and pipeline management, please contact [email protected] to speak to one of our dedicated Capital Markets account executives. In the meantime, feel free to visit
by Customer Effective, Florida, Georgia Microsoft CRM Partner