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Why do small / ALL business need a CRM solution?

The short answer to this is because all businesses need customers (or clients). However, we are all human and therefore fallible. So we need some support to make this happen continuously and successfully.

What is CRM?

There are many answers to this question, but perhaps what is most important is to remember that CRM is far more than technology. In fact, although technology usually forms part of a CRM solution, it is never all of it. I like this model of CRM as it reminds us that CRM is about people and process.

CRM Model by Gill Walker

The technology is subservient to these.

The technology performs three parts of the overall process

  1. Holds the data in an easy to enter way
  2. Makes the relevant data easy to retrieve
  3. Does the repetitive work to save time for your people.

In summary, what CRM gives us is easy access to the information – both our own and colleagues – to enable us improve the relationship between our organisation and the prospect, and where relevant, their organisation. We should be able to see quickly and simply a history of communications, so that we can move the relationship forward, rather than going over old ground. We should be able to rely on the CRM to take on some of the repetitive tasks such as sending high quality emails and updating some data.

How CRM can increase the profit of your business

There are five ways that we can increase the profit of any business. These five ways are shown below:

Five Ways CRM Increases Profit by Gill Walker
What is particularly interesting in this model is the compounding. If you increase each of the lines by 10%, your overall improvement is not 10%, it is not 50%, but 61% !!

True CRM can help with all five of these improvements.

Increase the number of leads to the business

Structured marketing campaigns which take advantage of the metrics so you can see what is successful and what is not will form part of any true CRM solution.

Increase the conversion rate of those leads to actual customers / clients

Once someone has approached your organisation and expressed some interest, the improved interaction management will prevent these interested leads from falling between the cracks

Increase the size of an order

A true CRM should have enough information about your products to help your sales people upsell, not just the eponymous “Would you like fries with that?” as an upsell to the current order, but also showing all of the client’s order history.

Increase the number of orders placed in a time period

By alerting your sales team to when a particular customer has not had a call for a while, you can reduce the likelihood of that prospect moving to another supplier for products that you can provide

Increase the profit per order

The biggest hits to profit are often hidden in the overall cost of sale. By making the entire sales process easier, the profit per line goes up.

CRM is not just for sales

True CRM will give you one data repository for all of your client data – from the moment that they first engage with you, or a colleague at your organisation, to when the relationship comes to an end. This encompasses marketing, sales and support. Once a prospect becomes a client, they should be receiving communications that relate to sales and marketing as well as service in parallel, rather than sequentially. Organisations who are successfully using a CRM will be touching each of their clients and prospects at least 15 times per year – in a mixture of ways. Modern CRM solutions can also bring information in from social media and SMS communications to help you build up that big overall picture of the relationship.

True CRM will also enable to ‘slice and dice’ that data to see what is working, and perhaps more importantly, what is not working, so that you, and your organisation, can learn and grow.

How to make YOUR CRM implementation successful?

Understand the issues that you are trying to solve. These issues will be areas within the business where processes and / or data in the legacy systems cause the users, or customers / clients to work inefficiently, perhaps re-entering data, or hunting for information or performing manually tasks that could readily be automated.

Understand the technology in enough detail to see how much of the issues can be resolved out of the box and then design a solution that really takes advantage of the existing functionality. I have worked with many failing and failed projects and the underlying cause of he failure comes back to poor use of the selected technology.

Ensure that your implementation includes enough education so that the implementation maximises on the functionality that comes out of the box and the users know how to use the solution to make their own tasks simpler and more efficient.


This article was written for and originally published in Behind The Brand

Gill Walker's technique for succeeding in Microsoft Dynamics 365 exams

Achieving Success in Microsoft Dynamics 365 exams

In just under ten months during 2020, Gill Walker passed four Microsoft Certified Professional Microsoft Dynamics 365 exams and developed a technique to ensure that you have revised everything necessary for the exam. In this video she shares this technique, which has delivered her success in four out four exams.

Given the importance that Microsoft is placing on people gaining certifications and not just gaining the certifications, but really gaining the skills and knowledge, this video provides useful tips for you and your team members.

Although this video focusses on Dynamics 365 exams, much of the content is relevant to all Microsoft exams - and perhaps even more broadly.

If you have any questions, or would like some assistance with your own, or your team members, exam success, please reach out to Gill

What do the current and upcoming changes to Dynamics 365 CE mean to our implementations?

Newly renovated house - used to explain the changes to Dynamics 365

Recently I had to explain the changes – both the upcoming changes and the recent changes – to a prospect who is not a Dynamics 365 user and has limited familiarity with it. While the changes cannot and must not be ignored, they do only affect certain aspects of the product.

If we use the analogy of home renovations, we could describe the changes as follows:

whats coming cr 700x650

Microsoft Dynamics 365 2020 update Wave Two is rapidly approaching.  What does it entail and will you be ready?

The next update to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online will be here in a few weeks. Between now and it arrives in your production system – which will happen automatically – you have a chance to ensure that it rolls out to your users smoothly.  This is a brief overview document with links to Microsoft documentation where you can find more details.

What is included in the 2020 Wave Two update?

This release includes updates to most of the Dynamics 365 family. However, in this article I focus on the changes coming to Microsoft Dynamics 365 CE.

Great strategy, poor implementation, poor result; weak strategy, good implementation, poor result; great strategy, good implementation, fantastic result

How to ensure a fantastic result in your CRM project

Getting a poor result in a CRM – or in fact in pretty much any technology – implementation must be pretty easy.  After all, a large proportion – up to 85%!! - of projects are deemed to fail.  I have written and spoken about his failure rate elsewhere.

The two major parts to the project are the strategy and the implementation. If you want a fantastic result (and who doesn't?), you must get both of them right. And getting them right requires more than wishing or wanting.

What is....700x300jpg min

What is Microsoft PowerPlatform, what is Microsoft Dynamics 365?  And why should you care?

Over the past several months, I have seen several people asking about Microsoft PowerPlatform?  And asking what is Microsoft Dynamics 365?  What is PowerApps?  Where does BizApps fit in?  And how are they related? I also hear people wanting to know if Microsoft has a CRM product - which it does.  I also know that many people are curious about how any of these products will benefit them.  To remove some of this confusion, I wrote this blog.  If I can help you with your CRM needs, please do get in touch. 

Articles about these key concepts of Microsoft's vision for the future of business technology can quickly deteriorate into 'BuzzWord Bingo', so I decided to provide you with simple, overview answers to these questions.  I have also included some video overviews of how Microsoft Dynamics 365 CE benefits your business - before any configuration is completed.

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Opsis is an expert Microsoft Dynamics 365 consulting company. Our focus is your Microsoft Dynamics 365 success - not licence sales or billable hours. As Principal Consultant, Gill oversees all business operations and strategic planning and execution, yet she still believes in offering personal attention to each and every client, so as to understand their needs and offer tailored solutions.  We are based in Sydney, with clients in Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne, Brisbane and across Australia.  We offer Microsoft Dynamics 365 strategy, Microsoft Dynamics 365 scoping, Microsoft Dynamics 365 implementation, Microsoft Dynamics 365 technical support, Microsoft Dynamics 365 advice and guidance, Microsoft Dynamics 365 training and mentoring.