Derek Major, Founder and President of Eligeo Business Solutions, describes some CRM applications commonly requested by his clients and shares a few examples of how CRM makes doing business easier.
Derek has worked in IT for over 18 years with expertise in business analysis, software development and project management. In 2008 he founded Eligeo, a full-service business consultancy specializing in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and customized technology solutions.
The following interview is comprised of excerpts, and the source material has been reorganized and edited for brevity.
Q: How do you determine which CRM applications are best for a particular client?
Derek: Just as you are interviewing me right now, that’s what we do with our clients. My role when first meeting a new client is to learn about them and their business and find out how they are doing things currently.
New clients are often not even aware that there is technology available perfectly suited to making tasks easier and freeing up time for other priorities.
By adopting new technology, they increase the efficiency of their business, which obviously drives up profits and increases revenue for themselves.
Q: What kinds of CRM solutions are most in-demand these days? What are clients asking you to help them with?
Derek: People are wanting to get more organized. They have work coming in, but they can’t manage it efficiently. They are looking for ways to manage workloads.
I have customers who, when contacted for support services, don’t have a good way of sharing information amongst employees. Maybe they are forwarding emails to each other, but nobody is keeping track.
We have a product for that. With a CRM system, every employee has access to all of your customer information.
Another example is salespeople that are having trouble tracking leads coming in from the website. CRM can help with that by organizing and storing those leads. You can even keep track of when they need to be followed up on.
Q. So your clients are wanting to stay better organized and improve efficiency?
Derek: Exactly. But there is so much more. Here’s another example that involves making a simple change to take advantage of the cloud.
If you’re a sales rep out on the road, do you really want to lug around your laptop? Or would you rather pull up information on your mobile phone, quickly, maybe snap off a receipt, take a picture of some documents your clients have and store them right on your phone?
Q: Is CRM primarily sales-oriented?
Derek: Sales are just one part of CRM. It also applies to marketing and service, the end-to-end lifecycle of a customer.
Marketing is feeding leads into the CRM. The sales teams are working in unison with marketing as the leads are coming in, qualifying them, calling them, quoting them and hopefully turning them into customers.
Once they are established as customers, that’s where the service side comes in. Service takes over the relationships, maintains them and helps them grow.
CRM ties together every operational system and activity, so you have a really holistic view of who the customer is.
Eligeo interviews new clients as a first step in determining which CRM applications will help their business:
- stay organized.
- improve efficiency.
- access information remotely.
- keep track of and store information.
- manage customer relationships in sales, marketing and service.