One of the great ironies of modern industry is that we have access to more data about customers than ever before but bringing it together to gain useful insights remains elusive. This is why a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is such a valuable tool.

Having a single source of the truth for customer data allows businesses to better understand the entire customer lifecycle from initial contact through to sales and ongoing support.

A critical piece of the puzzle

While CRM applications had their origins in marketing, organisations have learned that an effective CRM solution has the potential to transform everything about the customer experience (CX). CRM is the glue that brings together data from your financial applications and field service systems, as well as contact information from phone calls, email, online forms, and other sources to create a comprehensive view of your customer.

A well designed and implemented CRM solution ensures that when a customer contacts you, you know as much about them as possible – everything from why they last called through to their service history. Used wisely, a CRM lets you analyse the data and use tools such as artificial intelligence to look for trends so you can anticipate customers’ needs. This allows you to create a proactive CX rather than waiting for clients to always call you.

The value of integration

Some organisations may be sceptical about the value of a CRM, saying their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tools give them all the data they need. But ERP systems are usually focussed on internal processes and systems. CRM solutions are purpose built to integrate with other data sources to create a true 360-degree view of the customer to enable a superior CX.

CRM platforms such as HubSpot include powerful tools that allow you to automate the full end-to-end flow from your sales, marketing, and operations and field service teams, so the customer gets the best experience.

Of course, there’s no single tool that can service every single different function in a business. This is why a CRM, like HubSpot, can be such a powerful tool. It can easily integrate with other applications. For example, when a deal in HubSpot reaches a specific point, it can automatically trigger the creation of a job in Retriever Field Service with all the required data automatically brought across. There’s no rekeying or copy and pasting. And when the job is finished in Retriever Field Service, that’s reflected back in HubSpot.

Better processes mean better business

Business workflows rarely occur in just one application or a single department. Business processes that make a difference to customers require cooperation between different business functions across multiple activities. Everything from questions sent by email to service requests and following up sales leads require multiple parties to easily share information and collaborate.

That’s why having a great field service tool, like Retriever Field Service, and a powerful finance platform, such as Xero, aren’t all you need. A great CRM solution, like HubSpot, can integrate with other applications to create a 360-degree view of the customer that can be used by everyone and doesn’t rely on people rekeying or manually transposing information, can help you create an amazing experience for your customers that allows you to quickly respond and anticipate their needs.

And it means field service experts can keep using the tools they depend on, like Retriever Field Service, while ensuring the rest of the business can use that data to do their jobs.