There comes a point for most businesses when they realise that it’s time to get serious about their sales management and start to investigate a CRM system. In our experience in Dubai, this realisation either happens to brand new startups that want to get off on the right foot, or companies that are around three years old and sinking fast under the weight of excel spreadsheets.
Whichever position best describes your position, we have a tried and trusted way to get you up and running.
There is usually a one overwhelming motivation for a business owner to invest time and money in a CRM system. This is usually based around gaining visibility and control of their sales pipeline, but could also include marketing automation, access to mobile applications or improved collaboration between the teams.
Whatever the driver for the project, make sure that the initial phase of your implementation is focused on solving this problem. The danger is that you try to achieve too much too early. Even for SME’s, a Salesforce implementation can be a long term process rather than a short term project.
Identify the problem that you want to fix and then develop the CRM system to meet this challenge.
If your business has been trading for some time, it’s likely that you will have customer data in multiple places and in various formats. Typically this includes Outlook, mobile devices, simple database applications, and of course, Excel spreadsheets.
Getting this data into one place can often be a bottleneck with an implementation project, so its a good idea to start working on this as early as possible. Tenacre will be able to help you a lot here. We have templates that will use to store all your data in initially, and then we use admin tools to clean up the information so that there are no duplicates or corrupt files. Remember, gaining access to good data quickly is one of the main reasons that companies undertake these implementations.
Start asking your team to provide their data as soon as possible to avoid delays.
When was the last time that you took some to check that your business has a set of processes for sales and marketing? When was the last time that you checked to see if the team are actually following these processes? Before you get stuck into a CRM implementation project, it’s a really good time to do a quick internal audit of your sales processes and decide if they need a revamp based on the feedback from the team.
What you really want to avoid (as we do, your implementation partner!) is to be reviewing these processes in the middle of the system implementation. When this happens it will cause delays in completing the project, and possible force you into a process review when you don’t really have the time for it.
Try to get your key sales processes written down on a single A4 sheet, if it takes more than 1 page you need to simplify.
A Salesforce system should give the business managers access to real-time information that shows precisely where the company is at that moment, and also historical trending information that can be used to make management decisions.
Producing reports is a relatively straight forward exercise for us, but it’s important for us to know in advance what data you need to see in reports so that we can build the data fields into the core Salesforce objects (Accounts, Contacts, Leads and Opportunities plus any custom – objects that may be required).
Remember that the you will need to have similar but different reports for groups of users. For instance, your sales reps will see the sales and pipeline data for their own accounts, while the management team will see all sales reps data, plus aggregated information that shows total sales and total pipeline.
Remember, start with the end in mind. Define your report requirements at the beginning and let Tenacre build the system to deliver it to you.
This is the easy bit – we do this for you. For each project that we undertake we publish an online (cloud – based) project plan and resource centre. We break each project down into it’s component parts and allocate responsibility to one of the project team members.
Our project plans are well oiled machines at this stage, we have used each version dozens of times and incorporated updates or changes whenever we learn something new. Everybody involved in the project, both on the Tenacre team and the client team, has real time access to the online plan, and we upload all tasks, messages, files and issues to the project center. This approach means that we all work as a team with a focus on delivery of the project within the agreed lead time.
Tenacre project plans work, and brings organisation and structure for our clients so that they can see the system take shape over the lifetime of the project.
These five steps are not exhaustive, there are a lot of critical elements that we could have discussed here. However, we know from experience that when a client asks how to set up Salesforce, they are looking for the bigger picture and a framework from which they can work. We believe that our process is honed and efficient to deliver CRM projects for Dubai SME’s.