How did a stack of sticky notes and a President dedicated to innovation bring a small family owned company double digit growth and raving fans? That is the question answered by 2015 Visionary Award winner
Editor: As a small company, what originally made you decide to add CRM technology?
Ken: What happens in business is that there is a version of how the business should operate and then there is the version of what is actually being done. Employees get struck in a rut, or you don’t have good processes or controls to make sure business is being handled the way you want, so things can just fall off. In our business, everything that could possibly cause an issue, we have come up with a solution for. And the only reason it comes back around again is because we stopped doing whatever the fix was.
I knew we needed software to help us keep everything under control and to ensure that processes we have are delivered to every customer so they all receive the level of service they expect from us.
Editor: How were sticky notes involved?
Ken: The first step was to make a “customer journey map”. We started with sticky notes. I gave a stack of sticky notes to each person in the company and told them to make one sticky note for everything they did. It was that simple.
Then we all got together in a conference room and put our sticky notes in the order of the customer journey, starting at the very inception of a customer contact. Then it kind of snaked through from opportunity creation to follow-through.
We started realizing that we couldn’t go to the next step because we still had to do this and that. So we started adding more and more post it notes until we had what the process should look like. We saw that this is what we are actually doing, but this is what it should look like.
Editor: What did you learn from this journey map process?
Ken: When we were finished with the journey map we realized that there were a lot of things that were being done out of order. The process would go here and then jump across to this person and then come back to the original person. There were huge inefficiencies.
So first we got “the right people in the right seats”. Then we made sure that the process was “with them once and then on”. We looked at what was providing value to the customer or the security of the company, and if it wasn’t we should not be doing it. We created a “stop doing” list. Then we asked which of the steps could be automated through software. Through that journey we streamlined and developed what essentially became the perfect version of our process.
Editor: What was the next step in your planning process?
Ken: Once I started understanding what CRM software was capable of I went back to each one of the key individual players and shadowed them for a day. I grabbed a chair and sat behind them and just watched. As I would see something that I knew the software could automate I would ask them to tell me what they were doing, why they were doing it that way. I’d ask, ‘if it could be better another way, would that be valuable to them?’ We really went into detail.
Then I did a rough map in Visio of how that would work, including workflows. That was our first implementation plan.
Editor: What was the value in involving your employees in this process?
Ken: People felt as though they were being heard; they were part of this plan from the outset and they got excited about the CRM implementation. They felt that this really would be possible and that helped user adoption.
Editor: When did you start researching the actual CRM technology?
Ken: To be honest, I didn’t even know what CRM stood for when I started. We had used Microsoft Access and Excel in the past. We were comfortable with Microsoft products so I looked at Microsoft Dynamics CRM and also SalesForce, SugarCRM and Zoho.
When I got an estimate from SalesForce the implementation costs as far as designing the system were about the same. The monthly costs were a little less expensive with Microsoft. But there was a lot of positive buzz around SalesForce; they just seemed to be everywhere and that attracted me to it.
But I realized something about the SalesForce platform that scared me……
Read Part 2 “Creating a Culture of Constant Improvement with Microsoft Dynamics CRM” to find out why Kelly Roofing chose Microsoft Dynamics CRM over SalesForce, how they got their customers involved and the tangible benefits it brought to their business.
By Anya Ciecierski, CRM Software Blog Editor, www.crmsoftwareblog.com