Many people believe that a CRM Software is just useful for sales teams. But a CRM contains information about the complete customer cycle that is beneficial for all departments. If the data in your CRM is disorganized, incomplete or contains duplicates, everyone loses. The different teams trying to use this data such as marketing, sales or customer service might end up losing opportunities on closing deals, retaining customers and delivering excellent customer service.
According to an IBM report, 83% companies suffer from data inaccuracy. This means that a lot of data driven companies rely on dirty data to make their decisions. With a cleaner database companies can make smarter and better decisions and see an improvement in their bottom line.
One of the main reasons a lot of companies have unclean data is because they have multiple departments for data collection. This may lead to accumulation of same data points across different departments, gathering more data than required or assembling the data in wrong ways. This results in security issues and a lot of confusion.
The first step towards customer data management is understanding what it is and the principles behind it.
What Is Customer Data Management?
Customer data management is the procedure of attaining, managing and using customer data. The statistics about the number of website visitors or transaction data about the number of purchases made is collected by the company and used by it for understanding visitor profile better. Organizing all the required data in a way that is useful across all the departments in the company is the ultimate goal of customer data management.
CRM Data Management Practices
Data governance strategy
Data governance is essential for effective customer data management because it helps you identify what data needs to be collected and how. It also ensures that all the employees are on the same page. It is important to align your customer data across your company and ensure that the data is collected properly. A good data governance strategy helps to clear up all the confusion.
Delete or Merge Duplicate Records
To clean up your CRM database it is essential to delete duplicates. Records duplicate for multiple reasons like different team members entering the same data on different dates, data submitted by the customer more than once and various other reasons. Duplicates should either be removed or merged with their counterparts.
Limit the Number of Administrative Users
To prevent duplicate record it is also essential to limit the number of team members that have full administrative privilege. The maximum number of administrators with full access to system as recommended by CIO should be limited to six. But the right number of administrators should depend on the size of your company and the nature of your business. It is easier to control and maintain the process by limiting the number of admins.
Create Standard Practices around Data Entry
Another problem in managing data is when important information is missing or is inconsistently recorded. It is essential to create a standard process for CRM record entry, to keep a streamlined approach and workflow. Set clear, consistent rules and practices around entering data. It is important to check and analyze your data from time to time.
- Name: Set one format if only formal names are acceptable or can nicknames can be used. Are the names capitalized?
- Address: How do you keep a record of physical addresses? If a customer gets a new address, do you delete the old address or keep record of both old and new address?
- Households: Does your company link the entries for people who live at the same address?
- Job titles: Are the full job titles written or are they abbreviated? A simple difference between “Doctor” and “Dr.” can create an undetected duplicate record.
- Notes: What needs to be written in the notes field? For example, decide if your company will only use this field to keep a record of certain information that doesn’t fit into any other field, like a customer’s preferred name and make sure that everyone on the team knows about it.
Once you’ve a clear idea about what your rules and standard practices should be, make sure to document these and share that information with the members in your team who will have access to the CRM system.