How Are CRM and $100 Trillion in Economic Value Connected?

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By 2019 most of the forward-looking companies have already gone through an initial phase of digitalization, typically focusing on multichannel customer communications. However, digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. It is all about continuously evolving. According to the World Economic Forum forecast, digital transformation is expected to create more than $100 trillion in economic value by 2025. It is just the right time to shift to digitizing processes and operations and help your organization support rapid change and innovation.

First steps of the digital transformation course usually are adoption of CRM and business process management (BPM) software. These tools help automate, streamline, and optimize processes within an organization. According to Forrester Research, organizations that implemented complete CRM solutions experience measurable improvements in customer-related metrics like customer retention rate and service resolution time, by up to 60 percent.

CRM solutions have been primarily focused on the digitalization of customer-facing operations and activities. Their drawback is that not only can they create data silos, but process and organizational silos too. Despite all the technical advancements of the past decade, adopting dozens of different applications across the customer journey is making the silo problem worse.

One of the key tasks and challenges for companies is to figure out how to leverage Big Data and complex analytics to make cross-functional data more manageable. Data lakes and centralized analytics teams are not enabling the speed of information that digital organizations need to accelerate innovation.

Creating Alignment Beyond Data Silos

While data alignment makes organizations smarter, teams are still locked into functional silos by separate applications with no way to break loose. To solve this problem, companies need a product that allows for orchestrating processes and workflows across functional teams. It’s well worth the effort, as aligned sales and marketing generate 208 percent more revenue from their marketing efforts, according to MarketingProfs. Well-aligned organizations reportedly achieved an average of 32 percent year-over-year revenue growth while their less aligned competitors saw a 7 percent decrease.

A complete CRM solution on one platform that allows for smooth transition of data between marketing, sales, service departments, and employees is what leaders might want to look into. Such CRM suits are usually easier adopted, and they nearly eliminate errors or gaps since everything is stored in one system.

Low-Code Will Help Businesses Shrink the Tech Gap

Another gap that you’d like your enterprise software to help fulfill is lack of resources. Whether you’re an analyst, marketing manager, or a human resource manager, you are probably looking to accelerate your work. Being efficient in the modern era is key to high performance and achieving your KPIs. This means you are trying to automate as many tasks as possible and use applications instead of doing the job manually. Fortunately, custom apps for such processes are not unusual. Organizations develop tools for various purposes, from collecting and visualizing data to extracting relevant information from data silos to running approval processes.

This is both a relief and a cause for concern. The reality is that every organization has more tech needs than talented IT developers, and the speed of business is only increasing. Traditional application development cycles do not allow for creating business apps at the required pace. With growing backlogs, creating custom applications needs to be more about designing than programming. Luckily, low-code has appeared on the market to help non-developers build automation they need.

Low-code empowers your employees to become citizen developers. The technology enables teams to swiftly create required tools using a drag-and-drop interface with if-then logic. This minimizes the need for coding skills or IT department involvement, which allows companies to improve speed and reduce costs of IT delivery.

Instead of traditional computer programming, low-code allows for developing through graphical user interfaces. This means you can use drag-and-drop to connect components, set up if-then constraints, and generate a new web or mobile app quickly with robust features. According to 451 Research, low-code “can potentially shave 50 to 90 percent off development time vs. a coding language.”

The fast-paced business environment imposes limits on the resources and time you can spend to deliver the automation needed. Low-code platforms are able to cut the time it takes to build this automation and deliver results. If you haven’t yet, this might be the right time to upgrade your CRM to one with low-code capabilities and give your business the acceleration it needs.

Katherine Kostereva is CEO and managing partner of Creatio (formerly bpm’online), a leading low-code, process automation, and CRM company, focused on accelerating marketing, sales, service, and operations for midsize and large enterprises. Kostereva has bootstrapped Creatio and has grown it to a global software company with offices around the world, a team of 600 engaged professionals, and thousands of customers worldwide.

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