Manage customer relationships | pdl-inc.info
Customer relationship management and analysis of complaint-handling process of Norwich Union. Recommendations for improvement are also included. CRM or Customer Relationship Management is a strategy for managing an organisation's relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers. This includes: general customer-manager relationship training, how to handle customer complaints, customer service code of practice, and further resources to .
Off-the-shelf solutions Several software companies offer CRM applications that integrate with existing packages. Cut-down versions of such software may be suitable for smaller businesses. This approach is generally the cheapest option as you are investing in standard software components. The downside is that the software may not always do precisely what you want and you may have to trade off functionality for convenience and price.
The key to success is to be flexible without compromising too much. Custom software For the ultimate in tailored CRM solutions, consultants and software engineers will customise or create a CRM system and integrate it with your existing software.
However, this can be expensive and time consuming. If you choose this option, make sure you carefully specify exactly what you want.
This will usually be the most expensive option and costs will vary depending on what your software designer quotes. Managed solutions A half-way house between custom and outsourced solutions, this involves renting a customised suite of CRM applications as a tailored package.
This can be cost effective but it may mean that you have to compromise in terms of functionality. How to implement CRM The implementation of a customer relationship management CRM solution is best treated as a six-stage process, moving from collecting information about your customers and processing it to using that information to improve your marketing and the customer experience.
Stage 1 - Collecting information The priority should be to capture the information you need to identify your customers and categorise their behaviour.
Customer, Partner and Stakeholder Management and Relationships Training - pdl-inc.info
Those businesses with a website and online customer service have an advantage as customers can enter and maintain their own details when they buy. Stage 2 - Storing information The most effective way to store and manage your customer information is in a relational database - a centralised customer database that will allow you to run all your systems from the same source, ensuring that everyone uses up-to-date information. Stage 3 - Accessing information With information collected and stored centrally, the next stage is to make this information available to staff in the most useful format.
Stage 4 - Analysing customer behaviour Using data mining tools in spreadsheet programs, which analyse data to identify patterns or relationships, you can begin to profile customers and develop sales strategies.
Stage 5 - Marketing more effectively Many businesses find that a small percentage of their customers generate a high percentage of their profits.
Customer relationship management
Using CRM to gain a better understanding of your customers' needs, desires and self-perception, you can reward and target your most valuable customers. Stage 6 - Enhancing the customer experience Just as a small group of customers are the most profitable, a small number of complaining customers often take up a disproportionate amount of staff time. If their problems can be identified and resolved quickly, your staff will have more time for other customers.
Potential drawbacks of CRM There are several reasons why implementing a customer relationship management CRM solution might not have the desired results. There could be a lack of commitment from people within the company to the implementation of a CRM solution. Adapting to a customer-focused approach may require a cultural change.
There is a danger that relationships with customers will break down somewhere along the line, unless everyone in the business is committed to viewing their operations from the customers' perspective. The result is customer dissatisfaction and eventual loss of revenue. Poor communication can prevent buy-in. This CRM article is provided by Ellen Gifford, who specialises in helping organizations develop excellence in CRM, and this contribution is gratefully acknowledged.
- 6 steps from Customer Service
- Benefits of building relationships with customers
- Andrea Brown's specialist subjects
Customer Relationship Management concerns the relationship between the organization and its customers. Customers are the lifeblood of any organization be it a global corporation with thousands of employees and a multi-billion turnover, or a sole trader with a handful of regular customers. Customer Relationship Management is the same in principle for these two examples - it is the scope of CRM which can vary drastically.
Focuses Successful organizations use three steps to build customer relationships: CRM is a new concept to many organizations. If it's new to you, here's why most forward-thinking organizations devote lot of energy and resources to the set up and management of a CRM capability.
CRM can have a major impact on an organization through: In the case of CRM this is achieved mainly by providing a better service to your customers than your competitors. CRM not only improves the service to customers though; a good CRM capability will also reduce costs, wastage, and complaints although you may see some increase initially, simply because you hear about things that without CRM would have stayed hidden. Effective CRM also reduces staff stress, because attrition - a major cause of stress - reduces as services and relationships improve.
Understand your customers Understanding your customers is crucial in knowing how and why they buy from you. Customer profiling and market research can help you in better understanding your customers. Read our tips on understanding your customers for ideas on how to build relationships with customers to better meet their needs and wants.
Communicating with your customers is a good way to build up trust and improve customer satisfaction. If they have subscribed to your social media channels, calling them may not be an appropriate or welcome form of communication.
Read Communicate with customers for more tips on keeping in touch with your customers. Focus on service Providing a high level of customer service is important in building customer relationships and to keep customers coming back.
As part of implementing good customer service practices in your business, you may decide to develop policies and procedures to help encourage a customer focused culture amongst your employees. This includes procedures for greeting and serving customers to resolving customer complaints. Remember to train your employees in good customer service practices when they start with your business - and throughout their employment - to ensure a consistent experience for your customers.
Head to our Seek customer feedback page for ideas on how you can gain feedback. As part of good customer service, remember to thank your customers for their business and for any feedback they provide.