CRM for Manufacturing Success
For too long, many manufacturers have put all their efforts into managing their production lines—but at a cost. In their unwavering focus to improve shop floor performance, they’ve left out a critical component: their customer relationships. With customer expectations higher than ever, customer relationship management (CRM) software is essential for manufacturing success.
CRM functionality has advanced to empower manufacturers of all sizes to elevate customer journeys without sacrificing their shop floor efficiency. If you think CRM is unnecessary for manufacturers, we’ll prove you wrong by explaining how the software generates substantial ROI.
Leads and contacts shouldn’t be strewn haphazardly across spreadsheets and notepads, but this is often the case for businesses without CRM software. Such disorganization prevents sales reps from generating and tracking leads. As software grows more advanced, CRM is harnessing new technology to help companies manage and discover quality leads.
One of the top CRM vendors is Microsoft Dynamics 365. Its intuitive dashboards enable users to zero in on leads, and it connects seamlessly with other Microsoft products to collect all your customer data into a single platform. To continue to expand its functionality in line with business trends, Microsoft integrated its CRM interface with LinkedIn to provide users with a pool of potential leads and data-driven insights.
Salesforce, another premier CRM vendor, continues to make waves in the marketplace with Einstein, a suite of powerful AI tools. Einstein Lead Scoring automatically generates predictive lead scores which help sales reps prioritize leads and determine the next best move in the sales cycle. Both providers demonstrate how enterprise software leverages sophisticated technology and a wide breadth of data to capture more quality leads and streamline sales pipelines for manufacturing businesses.
Another disadvantage of having customer data distributed across multiple documents is the inability to offer consistent, reliable customer experiences throughout multiple channels. Service records, customer data, previous interactions—when all this information isn’t in one place, front offices are scrambling to find what they need to deliver fast, accurate service. With CRM, the insight required to exceed customer expectations is available from a single screen. Since customer experience is quickly becoming a major brand differentiator, providing a high level of service using CRM is a sure method of generating ROI.
Let’s take field service as an example. Companies infamously struggle to provide quality field service, but this is set to change with the revolutionary field service management (FSM) technology in leading CRM solutions, such as Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics 365. Salesforce’s Einstein Vision for Field Service enables users to identify exact products and utilize mobile CRM tools while visiting their clients. Microsoft Dynamics 365 facilitates connected field service, which leverages cloud computing and IoT sensors to reduce downtime and take a proactive approach to FSM. These innovations in FSM as well as other advancements in predictive analytics, machine learning and business intelligence offer unprecedented insight to help front offices anticipate the needs of manufacturing customers.
An overlooked advantage of CRM is its power to cut waste in your business. When customer data is captured in a single platform, front-end processes are accelerated, resulting in better productivity throughout your enterprise. Furthermore, when CRM is integrated with your ERP system, the shop floor can exercise lean principles by leveraging customer data to optimize sourcing and scheduling.
Without accurate forecasts and real-time insight into customer demand, manufacturers could easily end up with a surplus of raw materials or inventory. Access to CRM data is critical for aligning your demand planning with lean practices, ensuring you have just the right amount of materials to satisfy buyers while reducing waste. By connecting back-end and front-end data, software integrations streamline processes and deliver insight to boost your ROI.
Implementing CRM software is one of the most critical steps for generating leads, optimizing customer service and supporting lean manufacturing principles. Advanced CRM functionality transforms manufacturers into customer-centric enterprises, enabling them to strengthen their ROI and gain a competitive advantage in their industry.
Don’t even think about tackling a CRM implementation on your own. When you team up with the expert CRM consultants at Datix, you gain an experienced team that does whatever it takes to execute enterprise software solutions that work. As certified partners of both Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Salesforce, Datix understands CRM best practices inside and out and can help you determine which vendor is right for you. Plus, our Unity integration solution seamlessly connects Epicor ERP with both CRM platforms to maximize your software’s value.
It’s time to center your manufacturing operations around your customers. Get in touch with Datix today to start your CRM implementation or integration!