Customer-relationship management, or “CRM,” has always been a central aspect of successful businesses. As technology evolved, CRM kept pace and began combining consumer information from a variety of sources ranging from marketing data to social-media platforms. With the evolution of cloud technology, CRM has entered a new phase. Now if companies aren’t utilizing cloud networks for their CRM, they’re missing a variety of benefits.
1. Cloud-CRM Cost Savings
While the best cloud-based CRM benefit is subject to debate, there’s no doubt that cost reduction is near the top of the list. One huge source of savings comes from the lack of mandatory infrastructure. Companies need CRM systems, but they don’t need hosting hardware on site. By simply using software as a service, or “SaaS,” companies can reduce costs by 23 percent on infrastructure alone.
Additionally, businesses will save money on IT professionals. Those hosting CRM software on site must have people on staff who can maintain and repair it when necessary. However, with hosted CRM, the service provider handles any potential problems. Considering that nearly half of executives expected their IT spending to increase in 2015, this option is a great way to save money.
2. No Time-Consuming CRM Upgrades
Another job that a company’s IT professionals usually handle is software upgrades. In some cases, this task can require hundreds of extra man hours to accomplish along with purchasing the upgrade itself. With cloud-based CRM, things are no longer this difficult. In fact, the hosting company can usually push through upgrades without even phasing the client’s daily workflow.
3. 24-7 Accessibility
In the past, a business closing its doors at 7:00 p.m. meant very little would happen overnight, and if an employee wasn’t in the office, surely no productivity would come from their end. Thanks to cloud-based CRM benefits, this schedule has changed exponentially.
Since sales, marketing and customer data are accessible from the cloud, employees can access their CRM tools from anywhere without worrying about the time of day. Plus, with 50 percent of Americans holding jobs that are telecommute-compatible, cloud CRM opens new doors for mobile and at-home work opportunities.
4. CRM Increases Productivity
The ability to work outside of the office offers more benefits than just around-the-clock system access. As it turns out, studies have shown that employees permitted to work away from the office tend to be happier overall. While having happy employees is beneficial in a variety of ways, the fact that they’re up to 20 percent more productive than unhappy workers is the statistic that stands out.
5. Improved Disaster Recovery
Regardless of a company’s location, it can easily suffer from an unforeseen disaster. These incidents could range from flooding and other natural disasters to arson or a variety of man-made issues. In fact, scientists have shown that the frequency of natural disasters is steadily increasing.
For companies who host essential services on site, these disasters can be detrimental. In less than a minute, years of data and hard work can become destroyed. Companies with cloud CRM don’t have this concern because cloud-service providers are in other areas that are unlikely to fall prey to the same disaster.
If something detrimental does take place at the service provider’s site, they will have a backup site where they store all of a company’s data is safely. In essence, any disaster that could befall a company, be it natural or man-made, has nothing on cloud-based CRM.
The best marketing and business practices in the world mean very little without effective customer-relationship management strategies. Fortunately, teams can now do much of this work automatically and electronically. With CRM services finally available in the cloud, a once helpful tool has become all but essential in the business world.