The Importance of Having an Online Customer Management System

Customer Management System

The Importance of Having an Online Customer Management System

Even though the Ecommerce sphere is still expanding and is rather healthy the next milestone is yet to be reached. While the entire idea of e-commerce is based on being able to buy things online without having to go to a real shop consumers still want personalized offers that are tailored to their needs. The only way online shops can do this is to grow their database of information about their leads and adapt based on that data which is what a customer management system is designed for.

As your business grows, so does your data

Sure, a lot of SMBs may use some alternative approach to gather and share data about their customers, Excel spreadsheets and similar solutions, but they surpass that phase in no time at all. Simply, the data becomes too robust to handle on a day-to-day basis without a specialized software solution. See this as an example: www.bpmonline.com/crm/customer-management-software

Being that a lot of businesses are moving to a multi-channel approach, in order to enable their customers to reach them through channels they are most used to, the data gathered becomes more complex. Your data shouldn’t be a burden on your business organization, it should be a basis for easier decision making and better customer service. A CRM can help you gather the most relevant information instantly as well as help you manage it regardless of its rapid growth.

 

Real-time data access and cross-departmental benefits

Being that CRMs use cloud technology your data is always available and updates are instantly available to every individual team member. This is very important because all departments can benefit from the accessing this data. The sales department is the obvious example but also marketing, development, customer service, etc. All of these departments will also add to your data base and improve the overall awareness of the team about who their customers are and essentially, what they want.

Furthermore, by working with the same data different departments will have a chance to collaborate more closely and have a better understanding of the overall goals. Coordination between departments improves and therefore gives a better experience for the customers.

An Online Customer Management System helps avoid data loss

Online Customer Management System

We don’t mean to say that sales teams are blind to who their customer are without a CRM. Far from it, but gathering this information in a proper manner and utilizing in through your entire business process is something that is more of a team effort. Customer insight doesn’t just come from one place and a lot of the times valuable information can get lost in the sea of day-to-day tasks and correspondences. This kind of data loss can leave a business blind to issues that are ailing their business organization, new markets, sales opportunities, better marketing, etc.

Customer experience

On the customer side of things, the application of this kind of approach is reflected in increased loyalty, more purchases and improved brand awareness. A personalized approach to sales is a message to the consumer that you are ready to go the extra length to meet their requirements. A more organized and in the loop, so to speak, customer support is also a direct benefit of having a well implemented CRM. There is less time wasted getting them updated with the issue and as time goes by, there are fewer situations where they don’t know how to deal with in a reasonable amount of time.

E-commerce is becoming more customer focused and companies are struggling to provide the best possible experience to, sometimes, very large number of people. Without a CRM it would be very difficult to deal with success in e-commerce.

Business Process Management Myths That Need to Be Busted

Business Process Management Myths

Though everyone’s talking about business process management, it’s clear that this practice tends to take various meanings, application methods, and directions in different organizations. Everyone’s either implementing it or thinking about doing so, but nobody’s actually certain what exactly BPM is.

To remove all confusion, we’ve compiled a list of common myths associated with this discipline. Hopefully, it will help you understand BPM better and employ only those strategies that will skyrocket your business to a whole different level of productivity. Here’s what BPM isn’t, and what it should be.

Business Process Management is Undefinable

The true meaning of business process management has been debated for almost a decade before it was finally enveloped by a concise and complete definition. In 2014, experts from all industries and professions have come to a mutual conclusion – BPM is not some kind of a product, but a discipline.

According to the official definition that can be applied to all operations, “Business Process Management (BPM) is a discipline involving any combination of modelling, automation, execution, control, measurement and optimization of business activity flows, in support of enterprise goals, spanning systems, employees, customers and partners within and beyond the enterprise boundaries.”

Sure, the practice of BPM can and should be custom-tailored to specific business needs, but that still doesn’t mean that it is undefinable and open to interpretation. A process must always be considered in the scope of interrelated activities that holistically cooperate in order to meet a business objective.

Furthermore, modelling doesn’t imply a single standard that all organizations must comply with, but the very existence of a model that encompasses the process. The same uniform variable can be dedicated to automation, execution, control, measurement, and optimization, which always have a conjoint goal.

BPM Is Complicated to Implement and Maintain

BPM sounds complicated, but it’s anything but. Being designed as a discipline that streamlines business operations, this practice should by rule facilitate every activity and process within the organization. Its main purpose is to make things easier, not to bring more confusion or stem difficulty.

At McDonald’s, “Everything has a system and a process. They tell you exactly how to pick up a bag of French fries and hand it to a customer. It is a very specific way, and if you do it wrong, you are corrected by a manager”, according to their former employee. “They have a reason for everything they do.”

This is a very simplified, yet very accurate way to explain BPM. It is about identifying the reason – something that makes work less time-consuming and more cost-effective, while also improving the quality of end result at the same time – and finding the best method of realizing it in everyday practice.

Business Process Management Equals Automation

While some entrepreneurs wrongly believe in the utter complexity of implementing and maintaining BPM, others consider it as the mere equivalent of automation. The introduction of automatic technology to the office is a huge part of business process management, but it is still only one part of the equation.

In BPM, automation refers to all those activities that are completed beforehand to assure a smooth execution of the process. It can be manual in a sense that the aforementioned activities can be done by employees in advance and scheduled for later; in most cases, though, it is allocated to BPM tools.

With this in mind, we must stress out that BPMs as software system cannot manage business processes on their own – it’s up to organizations themselves to establish the best models. They are, however, essential for the execution of BPM as a discipline, which is why we equate them in the first place.

BPM Is Way Too Expensive to Be a Necessity

BPM

BPMs used to be very expensive, but many of today’s solutions are designed for the little guy and made affordable to startups and SBMs. When on the cloud, they are completely installation and maintenance free; the only cost of implementing one is the cost of software, and that’s pretty cheap.

Moreover, these BPM solutions are very intuitive, flexible, and easy to use, which means that they yield high ROI even when they don’t fall into the low end of the product spectrum. Also, you can choose to buy individual tools and make your own suite or to opt for a customizable all-in-one system.

BPM Requires Complete and Thorough Overhaul

It’s true that BPM requires some restructuring, but isn’t that what all ambitious organizations need to do when they start scaling? This practice will make you revisit the way you’ve been doing business for a long time and thus determine what needs to be fixed, accelerated and optimized for better results.

Small Businesses Don’t Have the Need for BPM

Again, not true. Business process management is for everyone, regardless of how small or understaffed they are. A department of one may not have any problems with collaboration and productivity, but three is already a crowd. Without BPM, the mistakes always lurk behind the corner.

Even if your organization doesn’t require real-time connectivity or process performance, it is in great need of efficient operations that contribute to the quality of products and services it provides. It is the only way of meeting your day-to-day goals, staying ahead of the curve, and growing at the stable rate.

In simple terms, BPM is the ongoing practice that asks and answers the most important questions in any business – what do you do, why and how do you do that, who does which part and for what duration, and when must it all be done. The sooner you demystify it, the sooner it will be able to help.