My official title at ByAllAccounts is Marketing Operations Intern—but around here, I’m much more commonly known by my unofficial title: Salesforce Guru. If anyone has a question or needs help with using our customer relationship management system, Salesforce.com, they come to me. After learning so much about Salesforce, and the many ways in which using it benefits our company, I started wondering whether our clients and other financial advisors are utilizing CRMs to the advantage of theirs. I did some research:
- According to a recent study by Aite Group (an independent research and advisory firm), wealth management firms plan to increase spending on CRM tools by 8% over the next five years.
Obviously, I got my answer. With so many financial advisors planning on implementing CRM solutions at their firms in coming years, I thought it would be helpful to find out some information on how to go about selecting a CRM system that best fits your firm, and some best practices on how to make the most of that system once implemented.
I recently sat down with Chris Williams of Junxure, a CRM system specifically for financial advisors, to get his thoughts on how advisory firms should choose and use CRM systems.
How to Choose
What are the top three things financial advisors should consider when selecting a CRM for their firm?
Training. Too many firms sign up with a CRM and don’t consider training. CRMs are more than just a place to track phone numbers and email addresses; they serve as a hub for all office workflow and procedures. This isn’t something that’s natural to most firms and it takes some education in order to truly be a successful user. The firms who maximize the benefits of CRM are the ones who are dedicated to a certain amount of training each year. Likewise, the unsuccessful firms are the ones who ignore training.
Robustness. One common problem we see are firms either under or overshooting with their selection of CRM. Small firms may make the mistake of buying a system too powerful and complex for their relatively basic needs. Large, highly organized firms make the mistake of buying a system that doesn’t do the things that they require. There are many different flavors of CRM available, and it’s very important to find one that satisfies your needs and capacity to spend the time to make it work.
Fit. How will it fit in with other technologies already in your office? You’ll want to consider ahead of time how all the various technologies will work together in your office in order to make data sharing as seamless as possible. Are they web-based or server-based? How will that affect integration between them? If you’re affiliated with a broker dealer, your choices may be limited and you should fully understand what your options are through them.
How to Use
Do you have any advice on best practices once a CRM system is implemented at a firm?
The biggest key is consistency of use across the firm. If you have everyone entering things their own way into the CRM, then you lose the benefit of having this information centralized, as notes will only make sense to the person entering it. Or worse yet, some people in the office use the CRM but others don’t. This really sabotages the effectiveness of the CRM. To truly maximize the workflow side of the CRM, all employees must be on the same page in how they use the system on a daily basis, so one person’s notes make perfect sense to others, workflow sequences are up to date and accurate, and a sense of trust exists around the data in the CRM. When this happens the CRM becomes the ‘official’ system in the office, where anyone can log in and know that they will get accurate information.
Chris Williams is a relationship manager at Junxure. Junxure, a ByAllAccounts partner, is the number one office management system built specifically for financial advisory firms.
You Might Also Be Interested In:
Get Going with a CRM, or Get Left Behind (Blog Post by Cynthia Stephens, VP of Marketing, ByAllAccounts)
How Do You Choose the Right Technology to Streamline Your Business? (Free Whitepaper)
How Advisors Are Using Technology Today (On-Demand Webinar)
comments powered by Disqus