Every business needs a customer relationship management (CRM) program. In the 21st century, the only way to keep track of everything you need for a customer is a CRM.

In this blog, we’ll look at what a CRM is, how it’s used, and how it can make your field service business more profitable.

What is a CRM?

A customer relationship management system is a software program that allows you to track everything you need to know about all your customers.

In the old days, this might have been a file folder in a filing cabinet. The difference now is that these programs can do much more than simply track information.

A CRM, like the one here at Optsy, not only lets you track everything about your customer, but also allows you  to set notices to contact them, can send emails and messages on your behalf, and allows you to put notes on their account. Since these systems are usually cloud based, everyone in the company can access it from everywhere.

Why do you need a CRM for your field services business?

Did you ever call the cable company and the operator says, “I see you called about an outage three weeks ago. You also upgraded your internet at that time.” That person is looking at a CRM, your customer file that contains everything you’ve ever done with them.

A field service CRM would contain everything you’ve ever done with your customers:

  • Every quote and contract
  • Every phone call and email
  • Every note about problems of delays
  • A copy of every equipment and materials receipt
  • Notes from salespeople or filed personnel about upsells and issues
  • Automated emails and messages to keep the customer thinking about your business
  • Much more

The purpose of CRM is to make the customer journey smoother.

“This is the fourth time I’m repeating this!”

On the other side of the interaction above is the situation where you’ve called and every time they pass you to a new person, you have to repeat your entire story.

A CRM avoids this. It’s all entered into the computer. When your customers call, it’s as simple as looking at the account and seeing everything that has happened.

The same applies to things like asking if they need an upgrade or if they want to buy a particular item or service. If they’ve been asked recently, it should be in the account.

Tasks and reminders

On Tuesday, you promised to get back to a client by Friday with a quote and some ideas for her project. On Friday morning, you open your email, and there’s a reminder telling you that you need to do it. By the following Tuesday, you have a new contract in hand and you’re making more money.

A CRM is like having a digital secretary. It helps you keep track of everything you need to do. Even more important than that, it allows you to assign items to others as well. If your quote person needs to reach out to the client on Friday, you can put it on their calendar, with all the notes, without ever needing to talk to them.

Keeping track of everyone

Often, your projects have multiple stakeholders. There might be an in-house project manager, her boss, his boss, and several subcontractors you need to work with. All of these people can be tracked in a single account. Access everyone’s information through the project, one of their profiles, your calendar, and more. It’s all linked together like a spider web, so you’re able to find everything in one place without having to remember everyone’s names, phone numbers, email addresses, and roles.

All the paperwork in one place

One of the best parts of CRM is that all of a customer’s paperwork is in a single place. If, for example, you’re at the customer’s talking about a new project and they say they need another copy of the invoice from the last job, you can pull it up on your phone, tablet, or computer and email it to them instantly.

Everything associated with their account can be found in their digital profile.

Everything you know as well

How many times have you spent hours looking through your phone or scrolling through email to find someone’s contact information? Or trying to remember what you talked about last time? Or trying to figure out when their birthday is?

With a CRM, it’s all in their account. Once you enter it, it’s there forever until you delete it. If you call them and then need to email them, it’s a click inside the CRM.

Everywhere, all the time

We mentioned this above, but it’s worth repeating: you can access your CRM from everywhere on every connected device. So, even if something crosses your mind at 10 p.m. on a Saturday night, you can grab your home, find the information, and make a note to yourself.

Your entire team can have access from everywhere as well, so as soon as the quote person posts the quote and a note, you can see it.

The best customer service come from using a CRM

In short, a CRM improves your customer service. You have everything you need, can track everything you need to do, and deliver superior service compared to doing it all with a notebook and your amazing memory.

And, since you’re spending less time searching for their paperwork and information, you’re more efficient and have more time to do the things that make you money.

If you’re wondering if you need an industry-specific CRM, like Optsy, read this article from the National Law Review where they look at CRMs from the perspective of a number of industries.