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The Universal Banker: Using CRM for Banks to Provide the Outstanding Service Customers Demand

November 24th, 2015 Ashley Harbaugh No comments

While consumers are increasingly engaging with banks through mobile devices, that doesn’t mean the job of the teller is dying – far from it. Bank tellers are instead evolving into a role that is quickly adapting to better serve customers’ new expectations and demands: the universal banker.

People enter brick-and-mortar bank locations because they need one-on-one interaction to answer a question, resolve an issue, or get educated on something specific. Those customers don’t want to sit around waiting, and they don’t want to be shuffled across departments. They want to walk into the bank, speak to the nearest representative, and have that representative handle their needs.

And that’s where the universal banker comes in. Customers are used to getting lightning-fast answers from a Google search on a smartphone – they expect from a bank rep the same in-depth knowledge, and speed in getting that knowledge, that the Internet delivers.

Getting Insight with CRM

A customer relationship management (CRM) system is an important first step in equipping bank reps with the information they need to quickly, and effectively, serve customers. Ignify’s CRM for Banks solution is specifically tailored to banking institutions’ customer service processes, and provides a valuable tool for productive, efficient customer service management.

CRM for Banks contains a comprehensive customer database that stores all bank customers in a central, standardized repository. Reps can simply type in a customer’s name in the search bar, and immediately be directed to the customer’s CRM record.

The CRM record provides a detailed outline of the customer’s engagement with the bank, allowing reps to instantly view the customer’s account transaction history, past interactions with bank reps, and specific bank preferences. A bank rep can use this information to identify cross-sell and up-sell opportunities that would best match the customer’s preferences and history, and can share this with the customer during their discussion.

The customer records also show multiple accounts that a customer belongs to. For instance, if a customer’s company and personal account are both with the same bank, that bank can see the customer’s activities on both accounts. There’s no need to toggle between different systems; CRM for Banks keeps customer information in one user-friendly place.

CRM for Banks’s customer record provides important customer information (contact details, etc.), and includes a history of the customer’s previous interaction with the bank (such as if they called in with questions, if they had any issues, etc.).

CRM for Banks’s customer record provides important customer information (contact details, etc.), and includes a history of the customer’s previous interaction with the bank (such as if they called in with questions, if they had any issues, etc.).

Access Information Quickly with the Knowledge Base

The quicker a customer gets what they need, the better. Giving bank reps the ability to quickly search and locate collateral that helps the customer is an effective way to speed up issue resolution.

CRM for Bank’s Knowledge Base is a consolidated database of all documentation, whether it’s in the form of marketing collateral, step-by-step guides, or answers to frequently asked questions. Bank reps can search for articles using keywords, or search by article category, and then select the article that is most helpful. Bank reps have the ability to upload and share links to articles in the database, making collaboration easier.

The CRM for Banks Knowledge Base provides banks a consolidated repository of documentation, allowing bank reps to find the articles that will help them better assist customers with questions, or requests for more information.

The CRM for Banks Knowledge Base provides banks a consolidated repository of documentation, allowing bank reps to find the articles that will help them better assist customers with questions, or requests for more information.

By keeping the customer experience at the forefront of customer service initiatives, banks will more smoothly transition into the digital era of banking without losing the personal touch of the brick-and-mortar location. For more information on how CRM for Banks can strengthen your customer service processes, please email banks@ignify.com.

Ashley Harbaugh is a Marketing Coordinator at Ignify. Ignify is winner/finalist of the Worldwide Microsoft Partner Award in 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

The Top 6 Things that Undermine Customer Loyalty

October 14th, 2015 Chelsea Cole No comments

The main aspect that any retail business should be concerned with is customers. The goal is to attract new customers and retain the old ones, however customers today have so many choices it can be easy to make mistakes when it comes to retaining their loyalty. It is important to keep meaningful relationships with customers across multiple channels that will keep them loyal to your business. Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution can give you insights into better understanding your customers that will prevent you from making the major mistakes that retailers often make. Because a retail business lives and dies on what their customers think of them, here are the top 6 things that undermine customer loyalty – and how the Loyalty Management Solution prevents them:

1. Focusing on the Wrong Customers

When it comes to marketing strategies and business processes, many companies strive to gain new customers. And while gaining new customers is important and good for business, it is also important not to neglect those customers that already exist. With a loyalty program, you can reward the customers that shop in your store and guarantee their continued patronage. Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution enables businesses to offer different types of incentives in their loyalty programs, such as a points based program where customers earn rewards for money spent, or frequency of transactions. You can also offer special deals only for loyalty customers like BOGOs or discounts on birthdays. These personalized offers help create better relationships with existing customers and motivate them to make repeat purchases.

Key Functionalities Offered.

Figure 1: The key functionalities offered by Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution.

2. Not Paying Attention to the Individual

Another way to give customers an experience guaranteed to please is by making it tailored specifically for them. The best way to show a customer that their loyalty is important is by having access to a 360- degree view of the customer so that you can be in tune with their individual needs. A fully rounded view can provide a next level in-store experience that shows you care about them as individuals. Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution provides easy access to customer’s past purchase history, their profile and product preferences, their specific wish lists created online, and the specific products they might have browsed online. This information helps equip store associates for giving customers an unmatched, attentive shopping experience that will strengthen long-term loyalty.

3. Leaving Employees Out

Although customers are the main focus of a successful business, it is crucial to remember what makes a customer’s interaction with the business work: the employee. A company cannot prosper unless the employees are competent and happy. The quickest way to cultivate a disgruntled employee atmosphere is by making them work with out of date, complicated system software that they do not understand. Negligent employees will only lead to bad customer service and unhappy customers. Offer your employees an easy to use, helpful system that will allow them to convey the best possible customer service experience. The Loyalty Management Solution provides a full view of the customer and the tools employees need to leverage that view. Putting this type of knowledge and the right tools into your employee’s hands will inspire them to provide that best customer care possible. They will work better if they understand how to use an easy solution that exists in order to help them be the best that they can be.

Easy Access Using Tablet Devices.

Figure 2: Tablet devices allow Employee's easy access to customer information.

4. Incongruent Channels

What’s better than giving customers one channel to access your company? Giving them multiple channels. As customers’ tastes and preferences change they often want to seek out interactions across a multi-channel platform. While a multi-channel system is great for business it is even more important that all these channels are connected and in sync with one another. Disparate systems for each channel create a fragmented view of the customer. A CRM system helps consolidate all customer information and records. This way, if a customer that typically shops online decides to come into the store, representatives can still access their records and transaction history. A unified loyalty program that merges all channels will make sure that customers are receiving the best service and will help retailers have easily accessible customer information for any scenario.

Key Customer Service Functionalities.

Figure 3: Key customer service functionalities include case management, automated service process, and dialogs.

5. Inconsistent Communication with Customers

The best way to keep customers coming back is by making sure you are keeping up constant communication. If your business is on their mind, it will be the first place they look to when shopping. Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution keeps a database with customer information and contact info so that you can give special treatment to loyal customers such as birthday greetings, reminders on sales, access to downloading apps, or special offers and deals. With this system, employees and representative have customer related information at their fingertips. It also provides a case management system with integrated knowledge base, call guides, escalation functionality, and more features that will provide better quality service and will allow you to keep in touch with those customers that are most loyal to your brand.

Create App to Track Customer Rewards.

Figure 4: Create an app for customers to track their rewards.

6. Fear of Advancement

All of the ways in which customer loyalty can potentially become undermined can be improved by talking one simple step, which is investing in your business by investing in technology. By simply implementing a loyalty solution you can improve customer service and loyalty be leaps and bounds. Even though this seems like a no brainer, many retailers can be hesitant about systems they don’t understand. Don’t let yourself fall behind and lose customers to your competitors. The Loyalty Management Solution is simple and helpful while resembling the Microsoft products you are already used to. The benefits of a loyalty system, and thus this particular solution, far outweigh the small effort it takes to implement this new solution.

Customer Profile Analytics and Reports.

Figure 5: See costumer profile analytics and reports.

Ignify’s Loyalty Management Solution strengthens relationships with customers, reduces total cost, and make disparate systems and channels come together as a well-oiled machine. For more information, please email us at loyalty@ignify.com.

Chelsea Cole is a Proposal Writer at Ignify. Ignify is Worldwide Microsoft Partner in 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

5 Myths Scaring Companies from Using CRM – and Why They’re Bogus

September 10th, 2015 Chelsea Cole No comments

Diving into the unknown can be a daunting process. As with most unfamiliar practices, it is not surprising that companies can be ambivalent about introducing new software to their business structure. There are a number of factors that can scare companies away from implementing a CRM system, even though it provides a more comprehensive and accommodating customer relationship approach to business. Despite the proven benefits of using a CRM system, there are still a lot of myths that can delay or prevent a software search and eventual implementation. Check out these five myths preventing companies from using CRM, and how we have debunked them using Microsoft Dynamics CRM:

1. The Implementation Will be Too Complicated or Time-Consuming

The number one fear for many businesses when it comes to CRM systems is the implementation process. If implementation does not go as planned or becomes too complicated, companies worry they won’t be able to potentially fix the problem. This will leave them stuck with an intricate system that they cannot handle, wasting time and resources rather than improving business processes. The fear of installing a complex system that no one really knows how to use can keep companies from using CRM.

Solution

Implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM requires excellent execution. This is where choosing the right implementation team comes into play. A team with extensive implementation experience and a risk management system designed for getting businesses up and running on Microsoft Dynamics CRM can ensure success. Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services implements and protects projects while helping organizations improve the predictability and quality of implementation by simplifying and standardizing the process to realize business value faster. Proper implementation is also ensured by utilizing Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step, which is a proven framework of methodology and tools for implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM. The key benefits of which include predictable, on-time, and on-budget implementation. The robust combination of methodology coupled with best practices mitigates the common risks that can occur on a project, improves overall consistency and predictability, expands business agility, and increases the probability of a successful implementation.

Ignify overall implementation Process.

Figure 1. Ignify’s overall implementation process provides for multiple validation points so there are no surprises guaranteed from early on in the process. This reduces the risks during the application of the project.

2. CRM Won’t Fit with Current Processes and Systems

Some companies fear that CRM software might not fit with their current processes and systems. They believe that installing CRM will require a fundamental change in their current systems, which can disrupt the business process and cause more hassle than it is worth. If the transition is too hard or the software does not fit smoothly into the company’s already established dynamic then the results will lead to frustration and waste of the new CRM system.

Solution

When implementing a new CRM system, failure most often results from poor communication or expectation gaps between the consulting organization and the current business processes that the client is actively engaged in. However, specific processes are used to implement Microsoft Dynamics CRM that aim to bridge this gap. During the initial days of the relationship between Ignify and the individual client, the frequency of meetings is high in order to ensure that all problems are proactively identified and resolved so that configuration of Microsoft Dynamics CRM will best fit with the respective company. Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps employees by working the way they already do, and providing them with consolidated customer knowledge along with intuitive relationship management tools that are a natural extension of the Microsoft Suite, including Outlook. This tight integration with Microsoft Outlook allows employees to continue using the tools they are most familiar with and already use on a daily basis.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM is integrated with Microsoft Outlook.

Figure 2. Microsoft Dynamics CRM is completely integrated with Microsoft Outlook. A user can convert a lead to an opportunity directly in Outlook, and the information will flow directly into Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

Any changes and upgrades requested by the company are easy to make and the IT staff will be fully trained on how to manage and maintain current systems along with the new CRM program.

3. The Learning Curve Will be Too Slow

Companies worry that the time and energy spent on learning about and training on a new system will take away from productivity. This transition can seem like a long and difficult process that is best avoided. In other cases the employees themselves might be apprehensive about their abilities to use a CRM system resulting in open resistance to the new processes that managers and business owners do not want to deal with.

Solution

Formal training and proper knowledge transfer can minimize any potential for frustration that can come with learning a new system. Ignify has flushed out several strategic steps within the training process in order to guarantee the smoothest transition to Microsoft Dynamics CRM possible. Informal knowledge transfer happens with managers and IT staff early-on in the engagement with formal training in all functional areas to follow. Typically a “train the trainer” approach is taken and planned well ahead of time in order to ensure that the process becomes repeatable internally by management staff to end users. Adequate training is one of the most important steps in a successful implementation. Ignify also provides E-learning training to help users increase productivity without spending time away from the office. E-learning allows employees access to training 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so they can learn at their own pace. Microsoft Dynamics CRM works with familiar Microsoft Office software so that employees don’t have to learn a completely new application or juggle different applications.

4. Security Issues Can Cause Important or Confidential Data to Become Compromised

It’s natural for a company to worry about the security of their customer data or other types of confidential information. Implementing a CRM software means putting all of this customer information and sensitive material in one place. Having important information in one program can pose a security threat. Companies worry that if the system is hacked or a bug causes it to shut down, all of their important resources, information, and data could become compromised.

Solution

Ignify is, in partnership with Microsoft, committed to delivering the reliability, high security, and privacy expected by its clients through centralized management as well as options for application delivery based on factors such as device trust and type. Microsoft Dynamic CRM uses Enterprise Data Security as well as Customer Portal. Enterprise Data Security provides customer service while ensuring data security and implementing a system of appropriate approvals, reducing the risk of implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Customer Portal has a two factor authentication and role based security system that provides a unified customer registration and self-service module. A business unit framework is also created that establishes clear security boundaries. This is tested across two business units to ensure that while a unified customer master is visible everywhere, the legal boundaries of data access can be enforced in the platform.

5. Lack of Standardization

Due to the fact that CRM systems are easily malleable in order to fit into a system of operation in a variety of ways, some companies worry that this lack of standardization can lead to management difficulties. If the configuration of a new system is not implemented in a uniform way but constructed by multiple voices and opinions, then it can be hard to keep track of certain aspects of the company.

Solution

This concern can be easily appeased through assigning a lead person within the client company to work with Ignify and be immersed in the process. Ignify requires companies to assign a Project Manager from their own team to act as a contact person who will coordinate the project during its life cycle and will be the single point of harmonization. The project manager will be empowered to manage scope to ensure success of the project. Microsoft Dynamics CRM is built to make it easy to do business across locations and departments by consolidating and standardizing processes. With the Sure Step Methodology for implementations, Ignify has also developed RAPID, which acts as a layer above Sure Step. RAPID offers a set of standard and pre-built deliverables that are ready to use. If you would like more information on Ignify or Microsoft Dynamics CRM, please email crm@ignify.com.

Chelsea Cole is a Proposal Writer at Ignify. Ignify is Worldwide Microsoft Partner in 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

CRM for Retail: What is It, and Why is It Needed?

September 2nd, 2015 Chelsea Cole No comments

Two of the biggest factors currently facing retailers in their pursuit of customer satisfaction are maintaining a consistent and reliable presence through every channel of shopping and making sure the customer has a personalized experience. Retailers are looking for technology that can allow them real time, in-store interactions that will customize a specific customer’s overall shopping experience.

CRM Across Channels – from Online to In-Store

It should come as no surprise that one of the easiest ways to personally learn about a shopper’s history and preferences comes from online shopping. Online records can show previous transactions of a particular shopper in order to offer new recommendations based on that customer’s history. But in-store shopping isn’t going away any time soon either – people enjoy being able to get an up-close look and feel of products before they buy. What retailers need is technology that consolidates customer insights from these different channels, so that the retailer can then provide a more personalized, unique shopping experience for those customers. But the different modes of shopping that the modern day consumer has to choose from can often times leave a fragmented view of the customer. Microsoft Dynamics CRM, however, offers the modern retailer the ability to give customers a seamless shopping experience through multiples channels.

Overview of Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Retail.

Figure 1. Overview of Microsoft Dynamics CRM for retail. Helps retailers support an omni-channel system based on an easy to use structure leading to better customer service and personalization.

CRM for Loyalty

Ignify’s CRM for Loyalty solution can also increase the lifetime value of the existing customer. CRM Loyalty helps retailers implement a loyalty program that fosters better relationships with existing customers and motivates them to make repeat purchases by rewarding them with points. More importantly, the loyalty program provides retailers the ability to track individual customer sales, thereby gaining valuable customer insights on their tastes and preferences. The CRM for Loyalty program focuses on customer tier management, promotion setup, award and redemptions, reports and analytics, as well as improving interfaces such as POS systems, web services, and mobile apps. This CRM solution can lead to improved customer service and reliability and help employees find all customer related information at their fingertips in one system. It also provides a case management system with an integrated knowledge base that will lead to better quality service.

CRM for Loyalty Interface.

CRM for Loyalty interface. Increase profitability by identifying and retaining valuable customers while tracking performance measurement and sales by channel.

Improve in-store employee to customer clienteling.

Figure 3. Improve in-store employee to customer clienteling with information easily available and editable on tablet devices.

Making Customers the Focal Point

It is crucial for retailers to make the customer the focal point of their business strategy, and using the right technology will help them give their customers better shopping experiences. Ignify’s CRM programs can help retailers achieve this goal. If you would like more information on Ignify’s retail solutions, please email retail@ignify.com.

Chelsea Cole is a Proposal Writer at Ignify. Ignify is winner/finalist of the Worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Awarded Top Honors by CRM Magazine

August 7th, 2015 Ashley Harbaugh No comments

The 2015 CRM Market Awards

Microsoft Dynamics CRM was the leader of CRM magazine’s 2015 CRM Market Awards, winning the top spot in four out of nine categories. The categories it won include: Enterprise CRM Suite, Midmarket CRM Suite, Small Business CRM Suite, and Sales Force Automation.

“This was a banner year for Microsoft,” said David Myron, Editorial Director of CRM magazine, in the issue. “Analysts praised the company for building an integrated platform that enhances customer engagements through multiple touch points.”

CRM magazine's 14th annual Market Leader awards rate the top five companies in nine categories, using a proprietary selection formula. The overall award rating is based on a composite score of CRM revenues and analyst ratings for customer satisfaction, depth of functionality, company direction, and cost.

It’s no surprise that Microsoft Dynamics CRM won these award categories. Microsoft has long promoted its vision of making Microsoft Dynamics CRM a crucial tool in helping business deliver amazing customer experiences with intelligent customer engagement. And it has backed up these promises with significant investments in marketing, sales, mobile, customer service, social engagement, and mobile capabilities – not to mention the business acquisitions that further strengthen the CRM offering, such as Parature.

The flexibility and scalability of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM architecture also enables customers across diverse industries to use it. Learn more about Microsoft Dynamics CRM’s global customer base, how they leverage the system’s powerful functionality, and the crucial benefits these customers gain from the solution, at Microsoft Customer Stories.

With Microsoft committed to strengthening and investing in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and with exciting new features and functionality coming from that investment, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is an exciting customer relationship management system to watch. We’ll keep you posted on new developments!

If you have any questions about Microsoft Dynamics CRM, please email us at CRM@ignify.com.

Ashley Harbaugh is a Marketing Coordinator at Ignify. Ignify is Worldwide Microsoft Partner in 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.