3 Reasons Why the COVID-19 Era is the Best Time to Move Forward with Your CRM Software Project
“Bear market”…”Biggest drop since the Great Depression”…”Unemployment at 35%”…”$2 Trillion added to national debt”… these are real excerpts from my news feed this week. It’s enough to get the staunchest optimist a little worried, and understandably, uncertain times often lead to indecision. However, this is not a message of worry, but rather a call to action. Here are three reasons from an insider on how economic contraction creates opportunity and is actually the best climate for your company to go full steam ahead with your CRM software project.
1: Boom times are not necessarily the best time for CRM software projects
The boom times we have enjoyed for the past decade make the decision to invest in enterprise software easy, but mostly because there is plenty of capital. From my perspective, the benefits end there. The other component that goes along with boom time CRM software projects is speed. You might have asked this question before: “Can we wrap this project up in 2 months?” This means your company failed to plan, and now the need for your company’s digital transformation has become red hot.
As a services company, we try hard to meet the implementation needs of the customer, including urgent timelines. However, when you consolidate timelines, you sacrifice other elements of successful software projects, like thorough testing and change management exercises.
Additionally, when the job market is hot, turnover of your employees and of the project team’s employees is higher, since competitors can entice workers with competitive offers. Turnover leads to project and company “brain drain” as well as reduced accountability for those on the project.
TAKEAWAY: Plan ahead; give yourself plenty of runway for adequate discovery, build, testing, and change management. All these things are easier to attain when your workforce isn’t running at 100% just to keep up with demand.
2: Your data can soften the blow of an economic slowdown
My career in CRM began at the tail end of a recession. I was impressed by my company’s steady growth through the recession due to their target market realizing they needed to do a better job of organizing and serving their existing customer base to stay afloat. They did this by investing in a solid CRM software solution and having a strategy to leverage their existing database.
What do I mean by that? If you have 10,000 solid customers in your database, what points can you research to understand and market to those who might have additional needs your company can help them with? Or, what can you learn from your data about where your revenue is coming from and where you should invest more?
We’ve all been told that it’s cheaper to keep a customer than to attract a new one, and during times like these, that is especially true. A recent Harvard Business Review article says it best: “Loyalty leaders grow revenues roughly 2.5 times as fast as their industry peers…Given the importance of customer value, leaders should track it as rigorously as they track other key assets…”
TAKEAWAY: Having a CRM software solution and then using it to find and take action from data points it holds will help you to drive more revenue.
3: If you weren’t thinking “digital transformation” before COVID-19, you are now…and it can start with CRM software
Let’s throw out a hypothetical: Your entire workforce is suddenly working from home…oh wait, that’s real. For many companies, it has become painfully apparent in the past few weeks where their digital strategy was lacking. This is the perfect time for digital transformation. CRM provides secure, collaborative, cloud-based access to information critical to running your business, from anywhere, using the internet.
If you were recently caught unprepared, there is still time to build a solution to assist your company to weather this crisis. And now that the precedent has been set, there will be ever increasing situations where a decentralized team will be essential or at least desirable to do business.
TAKEAWAY: The need for tools to access tasks and customer information remotely and the ability to collaborate collectively has never had a brighter light shined on it than it has over the past few weeks. This need will only grow moving forward.
Whether your plans are to expand a current system, switch from one platform to another, or adopt CRM for the first time, now is the perfect time to take advantage of a favorable CRM climate. Because you don’t have to face the “bad” that comes during boom times, you have the advantages of a buyer’s market and can transform your organization to be digitally prepared for the coming year and whatever else the future holds.
On a more general and personal note, take some deep breaths and enjoy the reminder that spring gives us: cycles of retraction are followed by new growth and expansion. This is not the first nor the last calamity to impact the world. We will adapt, we will adjust, we will get through it, and we will thrive.
Read this blog, The Top 7 Reasons Companies Choose Microsoft Dynamics CRM Over Salesforce.com, to learn why Microsoft Dynamics 365 is the CRM of choice over Salesforce, then contact us to start a conversation with our CRM team to discuss how we can help you meet your brighter future.