Use Workflow, Automation, and Templates to Streamline Operations with CRM

by | CRM Best Practices

Use Workflow, Automation, and Templates to Streamline Operations with CRM

by | Dec 15, 2021 | CRM Best Practices

How can you make common tasks dead simple for your account managers to perform?

Most people see CRM as merely a giant data repository … which it is.

It helps you bring all your data together and get out of silos, stop using Outlook, spreadsheets, accounting data, and operational systems separately. Bringing everything together in CRM is one of its core benefits.

But on top of that, you want to use CRM to make life easy for your people so they can serve clients better and give them a consistent, high quality customer experience.

In this second article in our series on driving more value with your CRM system, we’ll cover optimal strategies to control your data and operational flow.

  1. Add Workflows – don’t miss a step
  2. One way to make life easy is to use workflows. Workflows inside Dynamics 365 allow you to set up structured processes that follow specific paths for sales and account management. Many people think of workflows for service, for example, ticketing resolution. Or for sales processes such as qualify, send proposal, negotiate, close. But it’s also used for account management.

    Are there common things that accounts ask you for, such as an annual review, a list of past purchases, or a credit check? You can set up workflows so that everything happens in order and no steps are missed. That makes the customers happier. It makes your people more efficient.

  3. Create Automation – make it easy
  4. Automation is along the same lines as workflows. Usually, there are simple things you do every day as you work with accounts. If a task can be broken down into a series of steps, even if the task only takes five minutes, you can create a push button to automate it. You’ve just saved five minutes.

    For example, what do you do when a customer asks you to send their last invoice? Right now, you probably have to go to your accounting system or ask someone in accounting to prepare their last invoice. Accounting sends it to you, and you send it to the customer. With automation, you could make that a push button. When a customer asks, it takes one second to push the button, and the last invoice goes out the door. That is just one example; every business has processes that can be automated.

    Automation may save you a couple of seconds or a couple of minutes, but if it is something that your team regularly does every day, week, or month, the time saved starts to add up quickly.

    Saving time is not the only benefit. No one wants an inconsistent experience these days, and most customers won’t tolerate it. Automation also provides consistent responses for your customers, especially when it is combined with templates.

  5. Use Templates – don’t reinvent the wheel
  6. You probably send out similar and repetitive emails to customers all the time. That could be a product catalog, a customer credit form, an order form. In Dynamics 365, you can set up Outlook templates and Word templates and merge data. So if you want to send the same message to a group of people, for example, to inform clients of a product launch, you can use the template, select multiple records, and everyone will receive the email.

    Another example would be to set up a template for a credit check. The account manager can pull up the account, click the button that says “send an email,” and select the credit check email. The system will automatically attach the specific form with the proper language. The account manager can add a personal note and then send the email. The key is that all the effort of putting that email together is done for you.

    Using templates saves time and gives that consistent experience that customers crave.

Action Steps

Controlling the flow will make it easier for your account managers to use CRM to stay on top of customer relationships and sell more.

As a team:

  • List the common, repetitive tasks that take up your time.
  • Document the steps involved in each task.
  • Decide how you want information presented to your customer.
  • Work with your CRM Partner to set up workflows, automation and templates.

If you are using or evaluating Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM, Azamba can help you set up the system to simplify everyday tasks so your team can focus on driving value and serving your customers.

Contact us online or call 888.724.3999.

Related Articles:
Part1 – Drive More Value with Your CRM by Eliminating the Noise

Peter Wolf is the president and founder of Azamba. He has spent the last 20 years focused on helping small and medium-sized businesses become more profitable through effective and efficient usage of CRM.

His passion is blending the promise of CRM with the realities of business needs to create successful outcomes.