A customer relationship management (CRM) system gathers and consolidates raw data from customer interactions into a single database. CRM systems then combine this raw and contextual data to evaluate and classify customers. Because a CRM system offers limited analysis, implementing a business intelligence (BI) solution along with your CRM creates a powerful tool for customer-centric companies. In this blog, we will discuss how combining a BI solution with a CRM delivers faster decision-making. 

Understand your customers

Integrating a BI solution helps you better understand your customers. With today’s online presence, a plethora of personal customer data is available for evaluation. Determine what information you need and establish the key performance indicators (KPIs) to answer those questions. For instance, monitoring customer data such as the number of times a customer places a second order and number of times they return purchases, you will uncover a customer’s cost-to-serve. Consequently, you have the ability to respond with sales and customer service tactics that are more personalised for each customer.

Access data from multiple sources

Insights are only as good as the data from which they are derived. While BI and CRM solutions have reporting capabilities, they differ in their capabilities to source data.  Therefore, it’s critical that you have access to the data sources that will provide the best intelligence. Some examples of data sources are enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications, accounting software or spreadsheets, content management software, as well as email inquiries and social media feedback.

A CRM system is capable of accessing data stored only in connected databases. If data is warehoused externally, the data cannot be used in CRM reporting. In contrast, BI collects your raw data from multiple sources and creates a central repository from which users can get the information they need.  Combing BI with a CRM system provides companies with a single source of the truth for comprehensive reporting and clear visualizations in the form of charts, graphs, maps, and more.

Ensure your data is complete

Every day your organization is generating a wealth of data. However, it must be consolidated meticulously or there is a risk of inaccurate reporting. For instance, if data isn’t stored in one central location, customer service may have data that is different from the sales department. In other cases, data may be duplicated. By integrating BI and CRM, all of your data is captured and consolidated; eliminating redundancy and ensuring accurate data is available in real-time.

Refine metrics to meet your needs

Once you’ve integrated a solution, you will be able to reap the greatest benefit by creating a custom dashboard. Your dashboard enables you to continuously monitor your metrics and see the impact of your processes in real-time.  Your managers and team members can refine metrics and KPIs to address the unique needs of your business. This way, your operations can be streamlined for the greatest success.

Integrating a CRM system with a BI solution offers companies the ability to make enormous strides using vital business data. The integration allows companies to make decisions quickly, based on greater data insights and real-time information. BI-CRM integration has become an effective agent for change allowing companies to get a deep understanding of customers, their behavior and profitability.

For more information about Phocas CRM or BI solutions, book a data consultation now.

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Tags: Business Intelligence Basics, Job Role - Marketing, CRM

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