The Top Reasons to choose customisable CRM Software8 Nov 2021
It might seem like an obvious statement but in the world of CRM systems, each provider can offer different things. Some are focused mainly on the sales cycle. Others are geared more towards analyzing the data you hold. Do you need a simple CRM solution solely for contact management? That solution is out there for you. And yes, before we go any further, OpenCRM does indeed have all 3 of the aforementioned party tricks within its wheelhouse, BUT, today we are going to take a look at the advantages of customisable CRM software!
As I say, not every CRM provider out there will offer such a malleable, bespoke product. So, we thought it was high time we talked about customisation. And, more importantly, why you should seriously take this into account before picking an ‘off the shelf’ product.
We all want that new piece of software to be easy to use, right? The last thing we need in our busy lives is to pick a new business tool and then find that implementing that tool takes heaps of learning and, more importantly, heaps of time to embed into your company!
So, selecting a CRM system that would require extra work to customise seems counterintuitive to some. Here’s why it’s not!
Let’s talk ‘industry-specific’
Let’s take a look at those of you in a specialized industry. By this, I mean an industry not normally catered for by an ‘of the shelf’ CRM product. There are plenty of you out there. You have a need for a CRM solution, but you can’t bring yourself to ‘shoehorn’ one that doesn’t quite fit, into your business. What you really need is customisable CRM software!
If we drill down and look at some specific examples, I’m sure you’ll understand exactly what I mean.
You might be a company that provides awesome playground equipment for schools. Those crazy colourful climbing frames the kids love to clamber all over, that’s your ‘thaang’! You certainly have a need for a CRM system. You have contacts to save, activities to set, a sales cycle to go through. But, In your world, you wouldn’t have a need for a ‘companies’ module. You don’t sell to other traditional companies, as a more ‘standard’ B2B business might. If you had a customisable CRM solution, you could simply change the name of the company’s module to ‘schools’. Now your CRM system is speaking your language and everyone using it knows exactly where to go to find your clients!
The bottom line
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Make it make sense
Another example. You run a plumbing business. You’re sending engineers on call-outs to addresses. You’ve picked a CRM product that also comes with an app version for your ‘out of office’ team to use. They can easily log into the app and do things like check their calendar and add call out notes against an activity (which is all stuff OpenCRM is brilliant for btw ? ). But you have an issue. Your engineers don’t refer to a call out as an ‘activity’. To them, they are call outs, or perhaps appointments, but never ‘activitys’. I think you can see where I’m going with this…With a customisable CRM solution, you could simply rename ‘Activities’ to ‘Appointments’, and problem solved.
But let’s go further with the above example. Your engineers want ‘Activities’ to be called ‘Appointments’, but you have a whole team of office staff who never attend call-out appointments. So what you really need is a CRM that allows you to make those changes on a team level. And not to toot our own horn too much…But that’s exactly what can OpenCRM do (Toot Toot) As well as having loads of other user-based controls and permission settings!
What about things like page layouts? You already have a way of working. You logically go from A to B to C to D. One of the biggest hurdles when implementing a new CRM system can be a challenge to that working method. An ‘off the shelf’ product is not likely to mirror your ABCD way of working. This means you now have to get used to going from A to D to B to C, and that’s not easy!
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By holding the controls to areas such as screen layout, you can re-jig your CRM to make sure that your business can continue to work in that logical order. With flexible page layouts, you can now really see the value of choosing customisable CRM software.
Hide that screen bloat!
Okay, One last example! Let’s say you only really need a CRM system for contact management, assisting in the sales cycle and for some marketing. But your new CRM system has loads of modules you just aren’t going to use. Don’t overwhelm your users by having 10 unused modules hanging around on screen. It would be much easier to simply ‘turn off’ or hide those modules. Again, with a piece of customisable software, you could do exactly that!
You’re cutting down on-screen clutter, making the system more streamlined and causing less frustration within the team with the click of a button!
But why does that matter?
As we covered above, you really want a new business tool to be easy to use. Not only for you as a business owner, but for the whole team. Embedding a CRM system into your company is only going to work if everyone is on side. One of the biggest obstacles to your team being fully immersed in your new CRM system is a lack of understanding. They jump into the system on day one, take a look around and don’t know where to go or what to do. This is a common problem and one that customisation isn’t going to fix 100%, but it’s certainly going to make a huge difference.
By simply renaming your companies module to ‘schools’, your new system now instantly makes sense to your team. They’re much more likely to fall in love with it as opposed to fight it due to a lack of understanding. With currently unused modules turned off, your new users are not going to be so overwhelmed that they just want to cry ‘retreat!’, and go back to their old way of working!
There is going to be far less push back from the folks using the system day in, day out if they can work in the same logical way they did before. Asking the team to work backwards and inside out causes frustration. Customising something as simple as a page layout will mean the team can carry on working as they normally would, and therefore be much more likely to actually use the new system!
And this point talks to a much bigger advantage of customisable CRM software. If we forget the above examples for a moment and talk in some broader brush strokes, onboarding a new system can be tough. By making some small tweaks to your CRM system, you can have it make sense to your team. They will all feel a greater ownership over the new system because it feels like it’s there’s. It’s not a hassle to use and your not having to drastically re-educate your entire workforce. This is always going to lead to a much better, happier outcome when it comes to CRM system implimentation.
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Lets talk ROI
We have discussed ROI in detail here but I just wanted to touch on this again in relation to customisation and the idea of ownership.
It’s vital to your business for you to start seeing some return on your investment quickly. You need to make sure the money you’re spending on this brilliant new business tool is worth it! But it’s certainly worth sacrificing some of the speed of implimentation in order to get a better ROI!
Customising your new CRM solution is going to do exactly that. It may add on some time right at the start of your CRM project, but, when the system is fully embedded, you’re bound to see a better ROI. This is for the same reasons as mentioned above. A happy team willing to fully adopt a new way of working is going to mean the system works harder for your business. And all this comes from making some simple customisation decisions early on down the line!
Now spending some extra time in the early stages of onboarding, to customise your system, is not feeling so counterintuitive, right?
The phrase ‘bang for your buck’ also springs to mind. When you shell out for a new CRM system, you’ll likely have a shortlist of things you would like it to do for you. However, as we have said before your CRM system is capable of doing so much. Probably things you hadn’t ever thought about. So, if you comb through the whole system, right from the get-go, and understand what each module does (and more importantly what that translates to in your business) you can then very easily customise areas of the system you might not have planned on using. Once those areas of the system make sense in the context of your industry, you’re suddenly thinking up ingenious ways to utilize your CRM that you had never even thought of!
Putting it simply, customisation will get you that ‘more bang for my buck’ feeling!
One of the big reasons we are talking about this is because, of course, OpenCRM is fully customisable CRM software. We found, when creating OpenCRM, that most of the CRM products out there are very rigid. They offer little room for change or personalisation. This was something we heard time and time again from our new clients. ‘Yes X CRM was a fairly good product, but it just didn’t speak our language’. Those sorts of comments came in abundance. So we decided to create OpenCRM with an incredibly flexible architecture.
The examples I used above are just a handful of the options you have. We like to think that OpenCRM can be customised to work with just about any business out there! So, as you might imagine, we have far too many options to cover in one little blog piece.
If you’re fed up with trying to bend a rigid CRM system to fit into your business, give us a shout! Stop trying to fit that round peg into your square-shaped company! Let us know what your pain points were with your last system and we can work out how to customise your OpenCRM solution to address those fully.
And don’t worry if you’re not in one of those specialized industries. OpenCRM is a feature-rich, cloud-based CRM product, right out of the box! If you just want to sign up and start using it, that’s also very fine with us!
Take a look at what OpenCRM users think, over on our Capterra review page.
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Having managed bands’ and musicians’ social media since MySpace was a ‘thing’, jumping on board with OpenCRM to help manage our social media output was an ideal place for me to be. I have lived in the historic city of York, beautiful sunny Brighton, but grew up here in the Yorkshire Dales. When I’m not in the office you can normally find me wedged into a tiny van trekking around the UK and Europe with my band or spending time with my partner and our son.