It’s time for your business to get a customized CRM solution, but you’re not sure what you need. You’ve heard of customer relationship management workflows, but you aren’t sure how they can help you. So, in this article we’re going to explain how to think about customer relationship management workflows that works best for your business. Let’s get into it!
What is a customer relationship management workflow?
Before we go any further, let’s discuss what a customer relationship management workflow is. These are not pre-defined methods – your processes defined and enforced in your CRM. It’s not like you’re choosing between the Atkins and Keto diets here.
A customer relationship management workflow is the steps both you and your customer need to take to accomplish a goal. These goals are usually decided by the business, and if done properly, invisible to the customer. So, what are these goals?
What are customer relationship management goals?
What goals do you want to accomplish when you create a new customer relationship workflow? Let’s think around that question for the moment.
The idea behind a customer relationship workflow is to make your CRM system work for you. The goal of your CRM system is to be able to track the relationship life cycle between you and your customers. That relationship life cycle could include communications, sales, support requests, predictions about services, etc… So the goals behind your customer relationship workflows is to empower that customer life cycle process.
Let’s get more granular. The customer relationship life cycle starts as a lead. Leads are potentially new customers. One of the ways to collect new leads is by having people subscribe to your newsletter. You leverage these newsletters to eventually try to drive the leads into actual business – your goal. By reaching your goal, you’ve also likely allowed the customer to reach their goal by providing content that they have connected with.
That’s a customer relationship workflow. In this case the workflow describes the steps required for you to both convince a user to subscribe to your newsletter and the physical steps required for your customer to create that subscription. Then, you are able to determine if your content is sufficient enough for them to engage you for your product or services.
One More Example
Here’s another example. Let’s say that you run a service-based business like an HVAC shop. Each time you complete a service call, you need to figure out how to track both that sale and the details of that service call with that customer. How do you do that?
This customer management workflow is much more complicated. There are so many points of entry here. Does this workflow begin when the sale is completed or when the customer inquiries about the service call? Does the payment and sales system (like Stripe for example) start this workflow, or does it begin when the customer calls you?
How is the data entered into your CRM for that sale? Is the customer filling in a form from your website when they schedule the service call? Does your service tech enter that call in by hand?
If data is entered into your CRM by hand, how do you normalize that data? For example, if your service tech needs to track when your customer’s last maintenance was, what verbiage do they use to describe the services provided, parts used and the date the service was completed?
Why is this so important? It’s easy enough to find a customer in your CRM and look up the notes on their account, but what if you can’t find that customer’s account? How do you search for it? What if you just want to know how many of a particular service you dispatched on that month so you can track and predict inventory? How do you find and filter any customers that need their system serviced in next month so you can call and schedule those service calls ahead of time?
These are the types of questions you need to consider when constructing your customer relationship workflows.
How do I find my customer relationship workflow?
When push comes to shove, you need to figure out how to develop these customer relationship workflows so you can track your customer information in your CRM system. That data needs to be accurate, and your workflows can’t aggravate your customers. So, how do you choose the best customer relationship workflows for your business?
Frankly, the best answer is to find someone that knows what they’re doing. That isn’t to say that you don’t understand your current customers and current workflows the best. That’s the point.
Translating your current business workflows into a meaningful and transparent CRM system is not always easy. Improving those workflows is even harder. You need someone that’s been around the block developing these processes a couple times.
At the same time, you are the most important part of this process. You know:
- Your customers and employees the best
- The pain points and goals you have
- What needs to be done to make your business thrive
So, what you need is a person that can listen to you, make suggestions, and understand your business processes so they can translate them for you. It’s not hard creating customized CRM workflows. Anyone can do it. What’s difficult is finding someone that understands your business and can listen to you. Those soft skills are insanely important when you’re creating a customized CRM solution.
Would you like to know more?
Speaking about customer relationship workflows, we use our articles to both educate people as well as create new sales leads. Who doesn’t do that? So, when we write these articles, they need to be as evergreen as possible. Because, frankly, we have no idea if you’re reading this article the day after we post it or a year later.
So, here’s our sales pitch for those ‘year later’ readers. If you want more information on how you can improve your customer relationship workflows with a customized CRM system, give us a shout. Likewise, if you’re not even sure what a CRM system is and whether you can use one, call us. We’ll be happy to explain it.