Creating a Culture of Constant Improvement with Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Interview with Kelly Roofing Part 2

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“We wanted our team to be faster at what they do so they would have more time to spend with the customer.  We looked for software that would allow us to manage our business and customer relations better. That’s when we found Dynamics CRM Online.”

- Ken Kelly, President, Kelly Roofing

Ken Kelly, President, Kelly Roofing
Ken Kelly, President, Kelly Roofing

In Part 1 of this interview, Ken Kelly, President of Kelly Roofing, explained his unique journey map exercise that forced his company to look at what their true processes were and how they could use technology to provide a better and more consistent experience for their customers.

Now find out how they chose the right software system for their needs, how they got customers involved and the tangible benefits Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online had on their business and their growth.

Editor: Why did you choose Microsoft Dynamics CRM over SalesForce?

Ken: I realized something about the SalesForce platform that scared me. What scared me was the thought of what happens down the road when we need to change our processes. All of a sudden it is thousands and thousands of dollars even to make the simplest change.  When I was doing the demos of Dynamics CRM there was a backend interface for customization that I understood, that anyone can understand. It was drag and drop and name the fields how they make sense. No calling in a developer just to change the name of a field. I could do it myself.

If business is truly a living and breathing organism that needs to be able to change and respond to the outside environment and to your clients, I couldn’t be held back and stifle innovation or progress because I was afraid of the cost associated with it. So that really pushed us into the Dynamics camp.

Editor: At what point did you bring in a Dynamics CRM partner?

Ken: After I had made the decision on my own to go with Dynamics CRM, then I started working with a partner for the implementation.

Editor: How have you gotten your customers involved with this project?

Ken: Now that we have passed the critical state of implementation,  we are on this journey to bring our customers into our fun little world -- which is kind of an interesting concept.

A lot of companies don’t want their customer to know that they are using software to help provide a positive experience. They don’t want to show the recipe; they want to make it look like they are just excellent.

Instead, we are eliciting suggestions directly from our customers,  asking them what they think of our systems, our automated messages. We simply call and ask. And we reward a lot. We give out $50 gift cards for local restaurants all the time for this feedback. Our staff has great ideas but ultimately this is all about the customers. We are deeply passionate about the customer opinion.

It is very funny, customers will actually send us ideas from other businesses outside our industry and say, “hey, you should do something like this too.” We are creating fans and cheerleaders that are going to spread the word about Kelly Roofing and the experience they had.

Customers know that the company they picked to do their work isn’t one that is just sitting on their laurels. This is a company that is innovating, a company that wants to be world class, a company that will be there down the road to honor the warranty we put on their home or their business.

Editor: How does providing a consistent customer experience help to lower your costs?

Ken: My father used to say that if you do right by clients you will never have to worry about getting work. And that has always proved true for us. 78% of our new leads come from past customers, referrals and jobsite signs. This is marketing I don’t spend money on.

To give you an idea: for a $12.5million company, our marketing expense last year was only $42,000 and that includes development.  When we estimate projects, we come in middle to low end of road, but we offer by far the best system because we can keep our overhead so low and because we are so efficient.

Editor: What tangible benefits have you seen from using Dynamics CRM Online?

Ken: It's funny because we're just a little local family owned and operated business, but I can't tell you how many times customers have the perception that we are a national company and the computer system helps that perception.

We have 85 employees, 12 office/admin/sales and the rest in the field.  We only work in two counties in Southern Florida – Naples and Ft. Myers. We estimate 4200 projects a year. We have a win rate of 62% overall which is up dramatically from just 43% 2 years ago.

In the last 3 years we have doubled our revenue and we haven’t needed to add any office staff to administer the level of projects we have now. In fact in our office we used to have 5 people do what 1 person does today, thanks to the automation in Dynamics CRM.

As the president the responsibility falls on me that we deliver what we promise. Having software that has alerts and keeps everyone on track helps me to have more time.

By using technology we can ensure that the customer receives the experience that they expect.

Editor: What are your plans for the future?

Ken: I feel strongly about the principle of Kaizen – the Japanese word for a life-long commitment to constant learning and improvement. If you can weave that into your culture and everyone feels that, nobody sits still. And if you understand how important it is to never sit still, to always be innovating, always be improving, then you understand that you need software that is just as maneuverable and agile as you are.

I have plans to expand, but I never want to lose intimate knowledge of our customers. And we will never stop improving.

Watch Wayne Morris’ interview with Ken Kelly at Convergence 2015

By Anya Ciecierski, CRM Software Blog Editor,

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