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The Contesto Blog

Dynamics CRM: Get the Customer Information You Need in Your System of Choice

Posted by Gunn Kristin Saltvik on 07-Jul-2017 08:24:40

Dynamics CRM is becoming the de facto daily platform for thousands of sales teams. Sales Professionals can manage their opportunity pipeline, update client data and adjust sales forecasts.

However, one challenge with Dynamics - which is generally an issue with all CRM platforms - is aligning prospect and customer information in CRM with data in other systems. Another issue is the visibility of information to multiple users: including user access, security and rights. As an example, service, marketing, finance and other teams who interact daily with client data often don't have access (or have only partial access) to client information in CRM which they need for their daily tasks. Proposals, RFPs, account plans, product information, forecasts, surveys, marketing materials, service contracts and other customer-centric documents and files all need to come together in the right format at the right time for the authorized user. 

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Today, information workers typically find a work-around - sending emails back and forth with required documents; managing version control in ECM for content such as proposals, product sheets and contracts; and logging in and out of multiple systems to find the information they need. Non-sales employees are issued licenses for Dynamics CRM - but often only need a fraction of the data in the system, making it a costly option for many companies.

Wouldn't it be more efficient to have an easy way to find, view and manage the information you need, when and where you need it? And without searching through multiple systems, shared drives or hard drives? Or emailing a colleague to retrieve and send data which you can't view directly?

Now sales teams can view documents - such as proposals, RFPs, account plans or product information - directly within Dynamics CRM. Non-Dynamics CRM users can view customer data from the CRM, which is visible to them based on CRM's security levels and the underlying metadata structure. All information can be visible to the users who need it: in one platform, with single sign-on and IT-approved user access.

Integration between Dynamics CRM and your other enterprise systems is now possible with the OpenText Extended ECM Solution Accelerator for Microsoft Dynamics CRM by Contesto. When a sales user creates an account in Dynamics CRM, an object is created in OpenText's Content Server. Sales can view documents stored in their ECM platform - like RFPs, proposals and account plans - directly in CRM. Dynamics CRM pushes metadata to Content Server and grants access based on existing CRM security levels. Non-Dynamics users can view data directly in the ECM user interface - unlocking information in CRM without requiring extra user licenses.

Contesto's OpenText Extended ECM Solution Accelerator for Dynamics CRM provides one common layer underneath all of your systems for your customer information - accessible to users who need it, regardless of department and location. The end result: a single point of truth for all of your customer information from day one through the entire customer lifecycle. Interested in learning more? Join the session at OpenText Enterprise World 2017 or contact us

 LEARN MORE ABOUT CONTESTO'S SOLUTION ACCELERATOR

 

Topics: ECM

Bridging Information Silos to Deliver a User-Centric Experience for Sales

Posted by Gunn Kristin Saltvik on 06-Jul-2017 15:48:01

Stream your Sales Process, Deliver Customer Information at the Right Time and to the Right Teams 

In today's information-intensive world, we have been blessed with an abundance of platforms, systems, tools and apps which deliver a variety of information which we need in our daily work life. With companies embracing digitisation, the time we spend searching in file cabinets and desk drawers for quotes, proposals, contracts and purchase orders seems like a past-life experience (remember the sticky notes and stacks of files in the movie "Office Space")? In theory, the life of a sales person today in our digitally connected workplace has never been easier.

However, the downside is that information has become increasingly silo'd across various systems - ERP, Financial, CRM, and many others across a typical enterprise. With varying levels of security, user rights and information, it can be frustrating for a user to log into different platforms - or worse, to have to contact a colleague for information to which the user doesn't have access. Wouldn't it sometimes be nice to have a "Throwback Thursday" where we could simply open our file drawer, pick up the manila folder "CUSTOMER" and see all of the information we need in located in just one place?  

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Think of the activities which typically take place during the sales process for the Account Manager: 

  • Receives a request via email for a quote from a prospect
  • Enters prospect information into CRM (ex. Microsoft Dynamics 365)
  • Contacts inside sales assistant for a quote
  • Contacts finance to open a new account to receive pre-order credit approval
  • Checks with service team to confirm product availability, available shipping dates
  • Generates proposal and sends to customer
  • Receives customer approval to purchase, together with a PO number
  • Generates a contract or order form, sends to customer 

The sales process - from quote to order to ship to bill - often requires information from a variety of systems: ERP, CRM, Finance and potentially others. Even if your processes are digital (ie no paper required), it still can be cumbersome to find, access, approve and deliver information from multiple systems. How can you take complexity out of the sales process and reduce the time from proposal to booked order to billed invoice?

At Contesto, we believe that you shouldn't have to search (or beg your colleagues!) for information: instead, information should find you - and to be easily available when you need it, with just the right information at the right time. This is why we developed the OpenText Extended ECM Solution Accelerator for Microsoft Dynamics CRM, making it easier for our customers to integrate both front and back office systems and work seamlessly the enterprise.

To learn more, visit us at OpenText Enterprise World 2017 or contact us for a demo.  

 LEARN MORE ABOUT CONTESTO'S SOLUTION ACCELERATOR

Topics: user centric experience, information silos

About Contesto

We design, build and implement OpenText solutions to manage and deliver the right information at the right time by securely and seamlessly integrating content services into applications and process flows. 

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