First part: Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a strategy for managing an organization‘s relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers. A CRM system helps companies stay connected to customers, streamline processes, and improve profitability.
Customer relationship management focuses on managing all of the ways that a firm deals with its existing and potential customers. It uses information systems that integrate all of the business processes that interact with customers in sales, marketing, and service. The ideal CRM system provides end-to-end customer care from receipt of an order through product delivery.
CRM software records customer contact information such as email, telephone, website social media profile, and more. It can also automatically pull in other information, such as recent news about the company’s activity, and it can store details such as a client’s personal preferences on communications. The CRM system organizes this information to give a complete record of individuals and companies. CRM software improves customer relationship management by creating a 360° view of the customer, capturing their interactions with the
business, and by surfacing the information needed to have better conversations with customers. The benefits of customer relationship management system include:
• Better client relationships – Good and accurate information about client enables the service provider to better serve the clients. This makes the clients feel that the organization cares for them, thereby enhancing loyalty.
• Improved ability to cross-sell – Better knowledge about customer needs enables the organization to provide a better solution to their next problem.
• Increased team collaboration – A good CRM gives better information to better align teams and their activities to enhance customer experience.
• Improved efficiency in serving clients – If related team is using the CRM to record their customer interactions, EVERY client interaction, then they are able to serve the client with the knowledge of what has been previously discussed with the client.
• Greater staff satisfaction – The more knowledge the employees have the more empowered and engaged they are. Having an accurate and up-to-date CRM that everyone uses and accesses helps employees solve client problems. Doing so makes employees and clients happy.
• Increased revenue and profitability – Once everyone learns, and uses, the CRM productivity increases, sales cycles decrease, the organization has the ability to provide additional products and services to clients and client satisfaction increases.
• Cost savings – While the implementation of CRM software is expensive and time- consuming, over time the benefits far outweigh the costs. Members of the sales team are able to better schedule meetings with prospects in the same geographic area. Client-service reps are better able to resolve a client’s concern. There is a central client and prospect database that everyone can access rather than everyone keeping a separate spread sheet or contact database on their computer.
• Less client attrition – When a client is engaged with only one member of a professional services firm, the risk of attrition is 40%. When five or more partners are involved in a client relationship, the risk of attrition falls to less than 5%.
Second Part: Abbreviated SFA, sales force automation is a technique of using software to automate the business tasks of sales, including order processing, contact management, information sharing, inventory monitoring and control, order tracking, customer management, sales forecast analysis and employee performance evaluation. SFA is often used interchangeably with CRM; however, CRM does not necessarily imply automation of sales tasks.