“Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need, well before they realize it themselves” – Steve Jobs
How to use ERP to become a Customer-Centric Organization?
Before we dive into how to use ERP to become a customer-centric organization, let us first understand what is a customer-centric organization; what are its characteristics, and why it is important to become a customer-centric organization?
What is a customer-centric organization?
Customers, as we all know, can either be individuals or businesses, who purchase goods and services from another company. Customer-Centric Organization is one which keeps “the customer” at its core and builds products and services designed to suit the specific needs of customers. It focuses on providing a great customer experience from the word go. Everything, from the first interaction with the organization to the purchase and after-sales support, is designed keeping in mind the customer needs and implemented in such a way that the customers have an excellent experience.
What are the characteristics of a customer-centric organization?
So, how can you become a successful customer-centric organization? You anticipate what your core customers need and focus on building products and services that add value to your customers, solve their problems, make their lives easier, support your customers in their endeavors, help them achieve their goals and objectives.
Here are some typical characteristics of a customer-centric organization:
- Clearly define “customer-centric” and develop a culture to be “customer-centric”
- Use existing customer data to understand your customers better
- Recognize your most valued customers
- Focus on creating products and services for your valued customers
- Stay committed to your customers’ success
- Design processes and policies which are easy to adopt & follow for customers
- Track and measure KPI that matter to your customers
- Continuous improvement in your products based on “customer-needs”
Why is it important to become a customer-centric organization?
By keeping your focus on the customer needs, you can design a delightful customer experience, which will help you to obtain improved customer satisfaction. This will result in customer loyalty & long term customer retention. Loyal customers are crucial for any business, as they provide you repeat business as well as spread the good word about your brand among their friends and acquaintances; which in turn generates more business from references.
How to use ERP to become a customer-centric organization?
ERP software solution automates and integrates processes of material management, planning, and production, procurement, sales and distribution, finance and accounting, HR & payroll, plant maintenance, customer relationship management. It connects all departments, teams and integrates information across locations. This makes it easier to access, gather, analyze information and make informed decisions. Let us now see how ERP helps to become a customer-centric organization.
1. Know Your Customer Better
You can use CRM Module to store all the data related to your customers and provides a holistic view of the customer. You will have access to the customer details, contact persons, their specific needs & requirements as well as the history of all interactions with the customers over a period of time. It is a gold mine of information that can be crucial to grow and increase your business. You can analyze this information to know your customers better and provide personalized advice that will add value to them.
2. Change your sales manager to business consultant & business experts
You can leverage ERP, to automate routine manual activities of salespeople such as quotation generation, sending reminders, etc. This will free up the salespeople’s time and they can shift focus on developing themselves as business consultants or experts. When salespeople provide valuable advice to customers keeping their best interest in mind, it lays the foundation of trust and confidence that helps close more deals as well as establish good long term relationships
With ERP you will get access to past transactions such as buying behavior, frequency of the purchases and trends. Salespeople can use these data insights to provide personalized recommendations.
3. Meet Customer expectations of high-quality products at competitive prices
Today customers expect high-quality products at competitive prices and immediate delivery. ERP plays a significant role in streamlining operations and providing a competitive edge to companies. It helps you to keep a close watch on manufacturing costs. With stringent quality controls, it ensures the consistent quality of products. Good control over the supply chain ensures the timely delivery of the products to the customers. This ensures happy customers.
4. Provide more value to customers
You can derive maximum benefits from ERP by digitizing and automating activities and processes which require a lot of manual time and effort. This will save significant time and effort of the workforce. ERP also helps to do away with redundant operations that do not add value to the customer and reduce redundant costs. Thus it improves operational efficiency and productivity.
5. Establish yourself as an innovative company with enhanced products & services
You have a powerful tool called ERP that gathers data from all processes and departments of the organization. It helps to develop Corporate IQ with data gathered over a period of time and provides an analysis of past trends. With the help of feedback from customers, you can identify areas for adapting your products to changing customer requirements, providing innovative solutions to their problems and so on.
6. Focus on customer experience
You can use ERP to add value to all customer touchpoints and provide a delightful customer experience. You can use ERP to inform the customer about their order confirmation, share details about dispatch, email invoices or remind them about payments due. You can use ERP to track their service request, complaints and provide prompt service and action which they desire. This will make them realize you are a customer-centric organization
Always put yourself in the customer’s shoes and see what they really need. If you can minimize their efforts and maximize value for them, you will surely gain Happy Customers who will ensure Repeat Business. Customer retention is valuable for your business as it helps grow your business and improve your profit margins