Custom CRM development can seem quite tricky – how can you develop the whole new software, where should you start? We already covered all the “Why’s” and “Why not’s” for custom CRM – now, let’s move to the development steps to make it even more explicit for you!
CRM engineering is a long time-consuming process that needs your involvement. You want to get a good product, don’t you? That means that preparation, collaboration with a custom CRM development company, and staff training need you to be engaged in the process. If you’re ready for this to improve the business’s future, we’re here to lead you through the development process step-by-step!
8 steps to the custom CRM of your dreams:
1. Do your homework. One of the keys to successful custom CRM development is the preparation step that depends on you and your employees. What kind of information you should consider preparing?
- Customer relationship workflow. As you already know, CRM literally means custom relationship management, so this is the main area for you to analyze. All the communications with customers, the channels and payment systems that you work with – every action is vital, so document them in detail.
- Sales and marketing. What processes and tools do you need to include in your custom CRM development services? Make a thorough analysis of all the possible features that you use for your sales and marketing strategies.
- Data and security. Except for the workflow, you need to care about data protection. Explore what customer information is legal to use, which companies’ departments should or shouldn’t have access to some of the business information – and you’re good to go. Your custom CRM development company will take care of software security and data protection.
2. Define your goals. You analyzed your business processes, and now it’s so easy to set the targets! A detailed report gives you a clear perspective on the features, channels, possible integrations, and overall functionality of your custom CRM development. Also, at this phase, you might want to think about scalability – how flexible you want your CRM to be, which features you might need in the nearest feature.
3. Estimate your budget. Set the budget framework, and be realistic about it. A clear view of the budget is a win-win for you and your developer company. Discuss financial issues right away, and developers will be happy to adapt the custom CRM development cost to your possibilities instead of offering options that you can’t afford. Or offer you an option based on your financial expectations.
4. Choose the software development company. You need to get a sense of different companies’ proposals. The IT vendor’s choice determines the upcoming steps – you’ll work together for many months, and their professional and communication skills will directly affect the final result. Reliable developers will take all the worries off your hands, so you can trust them with the process. Spend some time on calls and discussions, to see if custom CRM development services meet your needs.
Here are some tips on how to find your perfect match:
- Make a research about a company. Read some reviews, ask your business colleagues, learn about a company’s experience – any information is useful for you as a client.
- Ask the vendor to estimate your custom CRM development. A rough estimation is the fastest way to understand if you could work together. The custom CRM development cost and the approximate time spent on the engineering are crucial, so figure it out from the start.
- Talk about the specifics of your business. For example, if they can’t integrate some systems that you need, or can’t include some features from your list, you need to know it right away.
5. Regularly communicate with the vendor. When you’ve talked about custom CRM development services with a vendor and agreed to work together, it is vital to keep your communication going. Set your control points – the exact development moments when you’ll have meetings just to check if everything is going according to the plan. These calls will not take a lot of time, but they are crucial for avoiding difficult-to-fix issues. Also, never hesitate to notify your custom CRM development company about any workflow changes to get a totally suitable product.
6. Pre-launch phase. We’re pretty sure that you want to get a smoothly-working solution at the end of custom CRM development. And unless your developers are wizards, your CRM needs to be tested before integration into the business. Testers and QAs will identify and fix all the possible bugs. After that, you can finally approve the solution with a clear conscience – and introduce it to your staff.
The next pre-launch step is the first CRM introduction to your staff. Ask your vendor about the extras – training materials. Probably, you think that you’ll make it by yourself and don’t need any additional help, but believe us – training will save your employees tons of time (and nerves).
7. Implementation phase. We moved to the most exciting part – implementation! You stepped into the whole new world of custom CRM development, and now you can integrate your customized solution. Use training materials, learn the product, and communicate with your staff to resolve any issues.
8. Post-implementation phase. Custom CRM systems are complex and fundamental. Ask your staff to give feedback after the first weeks of CRM usage. After that, you can contact your vendor and discuss any possible changes or other aspects. Stay tuned with your development company for any further updates that you might want to integrate later.