A large database on a CRM solution contains a massive amount of information. To sort through this and filter and search for records you need potentially means a lot of work. This is where using Views and Reports come into effect.
Views are essentially pre-saved searches, offering the results you need without having to go through the search motions. This means you can create endless numbers of views and filter the data as precisely as you need.
Want a list of invoices that are due this week? No problem. Does your sales rep need a list of all accounts in his catchment area that he hasn’t spoken to for the past six months? No problem. Does your Support agent need a list of all new helpdesk tickets that have come in and are labelled "urgent"? No problem.
The parameters used to create views are very similar to those used on reports – so you are able to create and use reports to show the exact analysis of data that you need. Do you want to receive a report showing all opportunities you need to chase up, every Tuesday morning at 9.00? No problem. Want to see sales figures for each rep from the previous calendar month? No problem.
As you can hopefully see, you are able to define and redefine the data sets for your own individual, group, team or organisation use. This is such a powerful feature and one that each of our customers love, so it is worth mentioning and giving you a reminder on here every now and again. Make your CRM solution work for you, so that with a minimum amount of effort in set-up, you can produce data sets that give you the exact results you need.
Sales Pitch: To learn about creating views and for a demonstration of how this tool works in OpenCRM please watch this video tutorial: http://opencrm.co.uk/crm-knowledgebase/kb625872/How-can-new-views-be-created.html
With each passing customer interaction, the helpdesk and support teams gain additional knowledge about customers and their interaction with your products and services. Using a CRM solution gives you the ability to capture this valuable data. This information can not only be used by the support team, but as it builds up a richer customer profile this means it can also be used by the sales and marketing departments when directing future campaigns and pitching sales.
Using this data to report on customer queries also means you can start to anticipate future enquiries, working out which customers, services or products are likely to generate the most support issues. Just some of the benefits of this incident tracking include being able to pre-empt when your support desk is most liable to be busy, and to predict which type of enquiries come in.
One key result of this is saving time and therefore money in the Helpdesk department as well as increasing customer satisfaction. A further way in which your Helpdesk becomes an interactive tool and even a selling point comes when you have established a Knowledgebase – the place where your FAQ are held online. This effectively becomes your self-service helpdesk, as you build up the knowledge and provide answers that are available 24/7 to the questions your customers are likely to ask.
Sales Pitch: At OpenCRM we have a commitment to supporting our customers and ensuring they get exactly what they need from their CRM solution. Our in-house support team receives on-going training to keep up with development and ensure they are knowledgeable in all areas of OpenCRM. Please click on the following link to find out more about the levels of support we currently offer: http://opencrm.co.uk/plans-a-pricing/support-options.html
The Helpdesk module within OpenCRM offers our customers all the tools they need to run a successful support department and offer their client base a high level customer experience. To find out more please click on this link http://opencrm.co.uk/features/helpdesk.html
When we speak to salesforce.com subscribers, particularly the ones that are looking at adopting the subscriptions for their businesses and considering the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) I am always surprised at the amount of confusion that can exist around their pricing particularly what is included with the various subscriptions.
Here are some things that you really should be aware of before you 'jump off the salesforce.com cliff'.
One of my key decisions is to use my CRM data to send email blasts from salesforce.com, surely this is easy to do?
Well the honest answer is no, its quite a complicated and misleading process and one that comes with a number of strings attached. The most obvious caveat is that you cant send more than 500 emails a day or at least you can but you need to upgrade to the Enterprise or Unlimited Editions where you will get 1000 email allocation.
Its only £45 per user (only) I can get away with the lower priced edition cant I?
Again, whilst technically correct there are some things to note when looking at pricing for salesforce editions. Firstly, what has already been discussed above - if you want to send more than the allocated 500 emails per day then you need to upgrade.
Also consider if you need any level of integration, either now or in the future, because if you do need to integrate your subscription (that includes adding any of the app exchange addons) or just get access to any of the data in a one way link, you will need to upgrade to the Enterprise edition (at least) and that is going to cost you a minimum of £85 per user per month.
Lastly but in some ways most important is getting an understanding of what data storage quotas you get with the additions you are looking at, this article (Size DOES count after all) is a good place to look to gauge how important your consideration of data storage can be and also this article (How do we stack up) gives a comparison of what is on offer and how OpenCRM stacks up.
So to summarise : salesforce.com does have some attractive 'low rent' options but be careful that you appreciate what you are getting into. As we all know, its the people & opportunity cost when changing your CRM solution that can easily add up so getting it wrong can be very frustrating and costly, getting your team to 'buy into the project' once is a challenge, getting them to buy into the second iteration of your project with a new supplier could derail the project completely.
Why not take a look at what we do here at OpenCRM : Turning hosted CRM on its head.