https://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/the-microsoft-toolkit-for-every-customer-stage.jpg255715Redspirehttps://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Black-Writing-with-Transparent-Background.pngRedspire2017-03-30 08:24:492017-09-04 16:27:51The Microsoft Toolkit for every Customer Stage
https://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/The-Microsoft-Tools-for-Digitally-Optimised-Customer-Service-new.gif255715Redspirehttps://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Black-Writing-with-Transparent-Background.pngRedspire2017-03-27 09:28:152017-09-05 16:16:57The Microsoft Tools for Digitally Optimised Customer Service
Always ones to practice what we preach, we immerse ourselves in our customers’ sectors to inform the scoping stage and make our client meetings informed and productive.
Our recent digital transformation webinar resulted in quite a few opportunities from manufacturers keen to get more information about the next wave of change so it’s just as well we were already well into The UK Manufacturing Review 16/17.
Within the review, The Manufacturing 2020 Roundtable reveals what some of the manufacturing industry’s leaders had to say about what comes next for them. It led to interesting discussions internally so we want to share some of the thoughts we took on board with you.
The discussion is pinned around one key question: are manufacturing businesses taking full advantage of available technologies to tackle the productivity gap?
More is possible with automation. From lights-out running to identifying and scheduling maintenance, businesses need to be looking at where there current processes are stuck in the dark ages.
The progress in robotics is noted. Modern robots have put safety fears to bed and can work side by side with employees. Programmability can put them in charge of the more dangerous parts that you might not want an employee dealing with and they are becoming more accessible to manufacturing businesses of all sizes.
Leaders are agreed on its usefulness with one business using it more and more for replacement parts to keep machines going. However, queries remain over accessibility for larger products as well as price.
If you read our blogs regularly, you’ll know that data equals insights. You’ll also know that Dynamics365 is geared up to produce more of them (hence the game changer description). For manufacturers, it means pulling in data from across the supply chain and identifying issues, improving quality, adding customer service advantage and reducing waste.
Internet of Things (IoT)
Tied in with Big Data, the IoT is expected to result in 50 billion connected devices by 2020. The opportunities are huge for operational efficiency, predictive maintenance, automated scheduling, optimized servicing, increasing uptime and usage insights for future innovation.
With all of these advances, mass customization becomes increasingly possible with modular manufacturing and more flexibility. Customers get what they want, when they want it and at a price they’re happy to pay.
A lot of the talk here is around funding but also perception. Synonymous with customer experience, how are you using digital capabilities to meet your customers’ expectations? One comment was made that SME businesses in particular need to remember that digital is a journey and firms are at different stages. For some, it’s about doing more with your website. For others, it’s about the machines talking to each other and automation. What they all have in common though, is the importance of data that you just couldn’t gather any other way than usage.
Manufacturing is still struggling to appeal to a younger generation who view it as old fashioned. Apprenticeships are a good route in but the colleges need to keep up with the equipment they are training people on and the forthcoming Levy will impact on the cost too. One of the business risks highlighted is that whilst degree qualified design engineers are easy to find, manufacturing engineers are few and far between leaving businesses exposed as their current engineers get older and look to retirement. In the same vein, middle management is also suffering from a skills gap where you have excellent technical candidates but with no management experience. The sector needs to attract a broader range of experience and skills.
For years, businesses in every sector have spoken of innovation with varying degrees of enthusiasm. It’s not going away. It’s gathering momentum and businesses really need to take stock of where they are on the journey right now, and what the next natural development for survival and growth should be.
All successful businesses have one thing in common. They ‘get’ their customers. Not only do they make sure the product/service is meeting their needs, they make sure that their relationship with them is unshakeable by providing the best possible customer service. So, what does that look like?
Well, here’s what it’s not. It’s not keeping your customers waiting for information, it’s not being passed around multiple people, it’s not missing deadlines and only explaining after the event, it’s not when the left hand doesn’t know what the right is doing, it’s not blaming other departments when things go wrong, it’s not incentivising new customers and taking the existing customers for granted, It’s not providing information only when it suits you.
Sounds straightforward, doesn’t it? Yet UK firms that aren’t getting customer service right are losing £234 billion a year. So what gives? Why is it proving so hard?
First of all, the service you think your customers are experiencing and the reality can be two different things and it won’t be because you’re not trying. One of the first things we do with our own clients is look at their existing processes. Yes, we’re IT driven but every piece of software and every application have the potential to enable or disable your team’s best intentions. So we ask questions like:
How do your processes look?
Are teams able to communicate effectively with one another?
How easy is it to access and share information between departments?
How quickly and effectively can a client’s query be answered?
How easily can you spot a pattern in complaints or in product issues before they happen?
How do your customers want to interact with you?
What are your customer satisfaction rates?
What areas do your customers need you to work on?
Every process you have should be removing the barriers that prevent all of these happening.
How would you answer all of these? At the end of this month, we’re holding a webinar to look into exactly how Dynamics365 removes the barriers to gold standard customer service. Not that long ago, CRM was a means to collect and store data, identify your best customers and prospects, send customer communications and to look at buying patterns. Dynamics 365 has responded to the new age of customer expectations and has changed the customer service rules significantly.
https://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/crm-for-customer-service.jpg255715Redspirehttps://redspire.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Black-Writing-with-Transparent-Background.pngRedspire2017-03-14 09:00:512018-02-15 09:22:29The Truth About Your Customer Service
It’s somewhat ironic that most CRM systems were historically developed with sales and marketing in mind and yet, sales team members who love CRM are few and far between.
Here are some of the perceptions of CRM amongst sales professionals:
Big Brother is Watching
CRM gives visibility of the sales pipeline and specific sales activities. Sales are the ultimate measure of a company’s success so it’s understandable that those figures are essential boardroom discussion points. The downside is that the Sales team can be heroes one minute, and have their performance under scrutiny the next. Businesses are never going to want to decrease the visibility of the sales team. Why would they? Dynamics 365 is about more than sales and marketing. Much more. The integrated platform is the first of its kind to glue together the final silos of data and processes of ERP and CRM bringing customer service, sales, marketing, field service, finance and operations together. One big feedback loop means business owners can see what is happening where in the business and the effect on one department to the next. Everyone in the organisation has the collaboration and insight to improve customer acquisition and retention, making it much easier for the Sales team to provide more competitive quotes, to assure the best customer service and to benefit from recommendation. Cynicism is borne of fear and ignorance. Dynamics 365 turns that on its head.
In the past, CRM systems have been a separate workflow meaning that the sales team view it with the same disdain as filling in timesheets. With the information in the mind or notebook of a sales person, it can be a bind to remember to record an email, a conversation, a new contact, a timetable update, proposal changes etc. It just feels like where data goes to die – no better than a filing cabinet. Dynamics 365 is one system. It’s the Common Data Model that is the game changer. It makes data entry more worthwhile and the effort is rewarded with tangible results.
The Probability to Close …Maybe
Many sales people say that the forecasting accuracy of old school CRM makes too many assumptions and doesn’t allow for the nuances of human decision making. There is not a lot of room for qualifiers that explain the readiness or value of a particular milestone. Dynamics 365 is more insightful than that. It’s best to see this in action but we can assure you that it works.
If it’s out my head, it’s in yours…
Sales people make their money through relationships – building them, converting them and nurturing them. Knowledge is currency and if they wouldn’t want a competitor to know everything, why would they want their colleague to? We can’t tell you what kind of principles you should be looking for in your business but we can tell you this. A good CRM system gives the sales team an opportunity to shine brighter, more often. Relationship building is about more than facts. It’s about rapport and relationships. Even your closest colleague cannot replicate your approach.
Who’s in charge?
There is a perception that with a CRM system, marketing begins to control sales. Dynamics 365 recognises they are two different disciplines but there is more to unite you than divide you! Marketing is everything that you do to reach and prospect potential customers to make them aware of you. Sales are everything you do to close the sale. It’s the difference between warming up a prospect and interpersonal interaction. We also often hear that a second piece of business from an existing client was lost because they were let down on project management or customer service.
Dynamics 365 licensing means that all departments can have visibility of other departments without paying for a full subscription for that app. When departments have visibility of activities within other areas, they can predict needs, have more meaningful conversations, improve processes and approaches, and move at pace. Collaboration comes in and department blaming is shown the door.
Dynamics 365 v Salesforce
All CRM systems are not created equally and finding the right one for you takes research. When Dynamics 365 launched, it was described in the industry press as a game changer. Every CRM system out there is looking at how AI infusion can ramp up customer insight and engagement. However, Microsoft owns LinkedIn, giving Dynamics365 a significant advantage. It’s one platform across the whole business, with user based licensing that saves money compared to Salesforce. Office 365 is key and the familiar Microsoft user interface that businesses all over the world have with Office 365 makes for much higher and smoother user adoption.
The last thing the Sales team need is another set of handcuffs. Dynamics 365 lets them really get the job done.