Customer Relationship Management software is generally seen as a tool that will help you to manage your contacts, your relations with companies, your documents and your communication (e.g. emailing…) with these contacts. A project management software is designed to allow you to plan, organize, and manage a project life cycle to ensure the successful realization of a project. Thus, normally they have different business objectives and they should be considered separately but what if one couldn’t live without the other? Let’s try to see how and why.
Both, CRM and PM software are time-based software that records timelines and activities. You can easily schedule the work you will have to do on a project that will be on your agenda which is visible to everybody in the CRM. Let’s take an example, your customer service or support team receives a request from a customer about the project you’re working on. With a CRM that has a project module in it, they can easily reply to this customer queries about this project coming in through various media.
Finally, CRM is presented as a collaborative tool. Thus in your CRM, your schedule is visible to your manager, your support team, salespeople… Then they can see if you’re available to work on other projects or check if you’re free to organize meetings with them.
Project Planning and Tracking
Expectations from your clients and project realizations need to be linked to clear deliverables. This relates to both budgets, estimates, and achievement of deadlines. If you have your project module into your CRM you can easily give information to other colleagues on what you do, what your progress is and everybody can track the status.
Let’s imagine another example now. Your salesperson receives a complaint from a client because the project is getting late. If you have your project management tool inside your CRM both project manager and salesperson can see what the project status is and reply identically to the client.
When you realize a project for a client you generally communicate via emails. Then it becomes a necessity to integrate your CRM and your PM software to have email integration as well. Indeed, you may have many representatives with whom you deal during the various stages in the project life cycle and very often this communication with your customer is done through mails.
This is an additional reason to have your CRM and your PM software at the same place thus all emails and communication are integrated at the same place and again everybody in your company from all departments can have access to these emails.
Team strategy alignment
A project management module in a CRM can help all the project team members to keep track of all the project details, so everybody is aligned to the same strategy and if there are some risks to readapt or modify some parts of the project, the strategy can change ensuring that the project management team is part of the strategic realignment.
Support from leadership
We already said it before, your CRM integration with a project module gives full visibility of your project allowing your team to be as productive as possible. With everyone’s task clearly delineated, there is no confusion about who is doing what and the lead project manager can keep everyone in line, taking responsibility for the whole project’s success.
Conclusion: Think efficiency
If you combine your CRM with a project module, everybody in your company can easily have access wherever and whenever he or she wants to the project. This asset will definitely improve your business process. Finally, you don’t have to check continuously from one software to another and risk to miss information everything is centralized and every department has access to the same information. It decreases uncertainty.