Mobile CRM allows employees – such as sales representatives, service staff, and support teams – to access customer data and interact with clients while they’re on the road. Mobile CRM solutions work on mobile phones, Blackberrys, iPhones, iPads and Notebook PCs.
KEY FEATURES OF MOBILE CRM
Some of the key capabilities of mobile CRM software solutions include:
|DEVICE SUPPORT||Mobile CRM solutions enable fast and convenient data access through virtually any handheld device and Web-enabled notebooks.|
|END-TO-END VIEW||With a mobile CRM solution, sales reps and field support staff can access data contained in the customer relationship management systems. To provide a complete customer view other systems such as finance or distribution systems may also need to be accessed.|
|COMPLETE CONTACT MANAGEMENT||A mobile CRM software package provides end-to-end management of all clients, prospects, and other contacts. Additionally, users can efficiently organise related opportunities, meetings, calls, and other activities, for comprehensive contact history tracking.|
|ALWAYS UP TO DATE||During the course of remote meetings and discussions, events occur that need to be shared with other departments within the organisation. A customer may have a technical problem during a meeting – this can be communicated instantly to support. Mobile CRM solutions can instantly action these issues or document for further action.|
|CALENDAR AND SCHEDULE MANAGEMENT||Travelling staff are busy, and have a hard time keeping up with their dynamic and frequently-changing meetings. Mobile CRM solutions provide comprehensive features for more effectively coordinating and managing their calendars.|
|AUTOMATED ORDER PROCESSING||Sales reps often travel from one customer site to the next, with few stops into an office. Through mobile CRM software, they can automatically create and process, the sales orders they receive, to ensure rapid fulfilment – even if they’re not in the office.|
|JOB TICKET TRACKING||Field technicians rarely return to an office. They need to keep others informed of the work they’ve completed, and the status of the jobs they’ve been assigned. With mobile CRM, they can use their devices to enter the outcomes of their service calls into the centralised database, or track the status of other open tickets they’ve been involved in.|
|DATA SYNCHRONISATION||In some locations, wireless connections are hard to establish. Yet, field workers may need to access and review a specific data set, or make changes or updates to information based on their recent activities. Mobile CRM allows users to work offline, and then automatically synchronises data once a connection has been re-established.|
|FLEXIBLE WORK ENVIRONMENTS||Although the key focus is on Mobile users the platform should also be flexible enough to manage scenarios such as home office access, part time staff etc. The expected flexibility of the modern work environment is an area that needs to be considered.|
What to Look for When Choosing a Mobile CRM Solution
When selecting a mobile CRM solution, look out for the following functionality:
|ACCESS TO ALL ENTERPRISE SYSTEMS –||Some mobile CRM solutions simply extend the capabilities of customer relationship management systems to handheld devices. Will this be enough for your business or do mobile staffs need to interact with existing and potential clients in a broader way? Do staffs also need to check credit history in the Finance system or current outstanding product issues? The most beneficial mobile CRM solutions are those that offer access not only to information contained in a CRM application, but to any other source. The key is for you to review and understand what is needed and to develop a business case that provides a good return for your investment.|
|SECURITY||Mobile CRM presents a security challenge – data must be readily accessible in a fast and convenient way to a variety of users, and must also be fully protected from unauthorised access or theft. The same measures that you apply within a physical office environment needs to be extended out. If you are implementing a Cloud CRM solution then essentially everything is outside your physical control. However, security systems run by expert third parties may well be of a higher grade than those carried out by your generalist IT staff. At the end of the day your sensitive customer information is at risk and it is crucial to choose a mobile CRM solution that leverages the most advanced security techniques available. Look for one that uses multiple layers of user authentication, data encryption, and other leading-edge features.|
|KEEPING UP TO DATE –||A lot goes on when a mobile worker is out of the office. An account is put on hold, or parts needed for an upcoming service call is unavailable. These events can impact client meetings, and therefore, mobile workers need to be notified as soon as they occur. Mobile CRM systems allow dynamic real-time alerts to be sent pre-defined users when specific business conditions arise. These can be via email, SMS, Chat or some other means. This ensures that all users, particularly those in customer facing parts of the business, have the information they need to deliver the best customer experience.|
|TAILOR TO YOUR BUSINESS –||Pushing out a company’s unique set of processes to each individual worker within an organisation has some challenges. A mobile CRM solution that offers some flexible end user customisation options will make this easier. This will allow each user to work in the way they are most comfortable by tailoring the solution to meet their needs.|
|ACCESSIBILITY –||Consider how much accessibility your users need. Will access be provided only from company owned machines, or will a staff member be able to use their home PC? As your business grows you may want to offer staff more flexible hours and conditions and the Mobile CRM environment can help you execute these plans.|
Whether you choose a Cloud or On-site CRM system and add a Mobile CRM capability there is a trade-off between the control, management, price and security of a solution. Understand these elements and identify the key areas that are important to your business.
The ‘right’ answer for your business is that you have confidence in the vendor and the implementation partner to help you achieve your goals.