Bespoke CRMSept. 10, 2020 | Categories: blog
Your CRM is your most important business system. A good web based bespoke CRM system will provide you with a platform to store and analyse your customer data, helping you to manage relationships, identify cross-sell opportunities and monitor your leads. The more information that you know about your customers, the more you can tailor your business activities and products to suit them. A bespoke CRM system will ensure that your employees have a business tool that easily and effectively lets you gather this customer information in order to make better business decisions, quicker.
Choosing the right CRM is an absolute minefield, there are so many off the shelf options out there, built by huge international companies such as Salesforce, Oracle and Hubspot. If you’re in the market for a new system, where do you start? It's easy to go for one of the big boys and assume that they're the best because they are built by a multi billion $ company but it is important to remember that they might provide the best platform for some companies, but certainly not all companies. The trouble with a lot of the big CRM systems out there is that as a product, they've become too big and do too many things which has ultimately rendered them hard to use and complicated. Your CRM is a vital, business critical system and your requirements should therefore be considered carefully prior to purchase. It's important to know what you need from a CRM and ensure that your chosen solution actually meets these requirements - often we hear of customers ‘making do’ with their systems due to limited functionality, ‘making do’ is not acceptable for successful business.
Once you have established your wish list, it's time to go to market. As we’ve touched on, don't settle for a system which meets ‘some’ of your needs, stick to your guns and go for something that ticks all of your boxes and offers room for further development as your needs mature and change over time. You may find an off the shelf platform that does all you need, great job done. If your needs are more complex, or you’re not satisfied with the bland reporting or functionality on offer there is another option; step forward the bespoke CRM.
At Tuware, we have found a growing trend of companies looking to go bespoke for their CRM. There are many reasons why this is the right approach and this article will debunk a lot of the common myths about going bespoke, Mythbusters style.
Bespoke CRMs are EXPENSIVE, right?
Wrong. Investing in a bespoke CRM is exactly that, an investment, not dead money or an unnecessary extravagance. Many businesses believe, wrongly, that their budget won't stretch far enough to cover a built for purpose, built to spec, CRM system that is tailored to their specific requirements.
Because the CRM is built for you, to your specification, implementation is straightforward and easy. One of the major problems with going for an off the shelf solution is that, while they are sometimes configurable, it takes time, expertise and money to make them usable and if a system isn't easy to use, it won't be used! How many of us have tried to implement something in house to give up after many frustrated months of unsuccessfully trying to then bring in outside help, or simply going with a different product to start the cycle over again? Business consultants make a fortune by offering implementation services for the likes of SAP, Salesforce and Oracle - when you go bespoke, you save money by bypassing the costly implementation, training and bedding in phase. You give your employees a system that does what you need it to do with a UX that is easy to use. This safeguards against employees wanting to avoid using the CRM which in turn safeguards against losing valuable customer information.
Most CRMs on the market these days are cloud based subscription services. This is great in the sense that being cloud based, you can access anywhere but the problem with SaaS is that when an update is rolled out, you get it, regardless of whether you want it or not. It's also the case that you end up subscribing to a product that has a lot of functionality that you will likely never use or need. ‘The CRM comes with this that and the other and only costs £xx per user per month’ - that's great if you need ‘this that and the other’ but what if you don't? Can you only pay for this and that and not pay for the other? Chances are the answer is no and you’ll end up with a product that does things you don't need it to do but you’ll still pay for. This extra functionality does nothing but get in the way and make the product top heavy, slow, hard to navigate etc. - with a bespoke system, you simply pay for what you want which leads to a slicker, easier to use system that offers better value for money.
When thinking about costs, let's not ignore the fact that bespoke systems are built to compliment how your employees work, you don’t want your staff to have to alter the way they work just to adapt to the software you’ve purchased. The less rework and admin you introduce, the more productive your staff will be.
This means the comparable cost between a bespoke and an off-the-shelf CRM package isn’t really as simple as one initial investment versus the other.
They take a long time to develop
While bespoke CRMs are built to your specification, they are not usually 100% unique. Most CRMs will share commonalities and common frameworks which is great for customers who need a system quickly. When you go bespoke, you're not reinventing the wheel, you’re simply taking a skeleton platform and adding the bits that you want. Unless your requirements are obscure, then the time spent in the build phase should certainly not be a major hurdle. The customisation process is made much more efficient by using existing plug-in modules — whether it’s automating emails or bridging to your website, these bolt-ons already exist. It’s simply a case of synching them to your CRM system.
It can be said that any time taken during the build phase is saved by the time taken to implement and integrate with your existing systems. Time is saved through employee training, as we’ve already covered, the system will be sleek and not overly burdened by unnecessary functionality leading to a much better user experience.
Bespoke CRMs are tough to implement
A primary advantage of investing in a bespoke CRM system for your business is the fact that it will be much easier to install and use than standard CRM software. Good CRMs are not stand alone systems, they need to be able to integrate with other business applications such as email, quote management software, project management applications, event management, online campaigns and so on. Out of the box platforms may integrate with some systems but are unlikely to integrate with all whereas bespoke systems are built with your existing infrastructure in mind meaning they're easy to configure and embed in the business.
Standard CRM systems will follow a generic model, a bespoke system will be designed with your specific business requirements in mind and can be easily and quickly modified to complement the changing needs of your evolving business.
As your bespoke CRM has been built to your specification and with knowledge of your other existing systems that will require integration, implementation is very straightforward and easy. At Tuware, once we have built a CRM for a customer, we only judge the project as a success once it is fully bedded in and being used by employees, we are on hand to implement and tweak if needed.
When thinking about implementation, it is important to think about how your CRM will fit the future landscape for your business, is it future proof? Bespoke CRMs are adaptable to suit your changing business needs and will allow future integration with other business critical systems better than off the shelf platforms.
So we have discussed 3 inaccurate myths about bespoke CRMs and you want more information, get in touch with Tuware today. At Tuware, we have developed CRMs for businesses with as few as 10 daily users all of the way up to licenses that allow 1000s of daily users. Our bespoke CRMs give you exactly what you want, designed how you want and delivered on time.