Initially contact management software has been known as a simple way for salespeople to create an electronic centralized database of clients, resources and business contacts. Because business organizations have persistently looked for improved ways to unify, streamline, and share customer information, contact management software solutions have greatly developed and expanded in scope. Nowadays, such solutions allow businesses to record, store and track valued information about their customers, contractors, partners, etc.
Why contact management prevails
Contact management software is regarded as a database-centered tool that stores, sorts and retrieves the contact details, sales history, business interactions, and other essential information relating to a company's clients. It helps organizations boost their productivity and reduce their costs, because such a program lets manage all client contacts and related business data within a single integrated platform, rather than using different data collection schemes.
Actually, the greatest advantage of contact management software for business is that all business contacts and related information (incl. sales reports, projects, tasks, and more) can be displayed and managed with help of a single company dashboard. And that's the main reason why contact management prevails today and why former methods of client management (e.g. using a simplified database of MS Outlook software for managing client emails and employee tasks) have become largely obsolete.
Part of CRM system
Contact management applications comprise part of a much larger business management system which is known as "customer relationship management" or "CRM" software. CRM systems allow companies to efficiently manage their sales and customer service activities, where relationships are crucial to success. Meanwhile, traditional contact management software provides just a small portion of the capabilities available in complete CRM solutions.
However, it does not mean that companies should always try to replace their contact management programs with more featured CRM applications. What it really means is that such programs can be available in the software market as standalone solutions or be components of complete CRM systems, so businesses should consider whether it would be sufficient for them to employ contact management software in their daily practice.
In order to help your company make right choice, here are the key features that are provided by a contact management application:
Task management and scheduling
A 360-degree view of sales and client management activities is ensured with help of task management and scheduling. This capability lets users plan, schedule and track business appointments, sales-related activities, tasks, calendar events, etc.
Records management and customer profiling
All customer records are available in a centralized database stored on the company's secure server. By managing data-rich client profiles which are always accessible and up-to-date, your salespeople will benefit from simplicity, higher productivity, and faster data exchange.
Document management and file storing
Managing business contacts involves creation and use of documents and files. With help of contact management software you can keep all necessary files and documents in one database. A system of user permissions will help you restrict or grant user access for certain files.
User access over LAN and Internet
Advanced contact management software is based on client-server technology that allows authorized people in the organization or outside it to access the database over local area network and Internet.
Sharing and collaboration
Business data can be shared among salespeople, managers and other personnel, so each user can gain visibility into contacts, client support activities, sales-related histories etc. This capability lets build and strengthen collaboration between local and remote teams.
Analysis and reporting
By creating analytic reports and statements, your company personnel can summarize and analyze contact management data. Special indicators can be created and used to measure employee performance.
Contact management that works the way you need
The mentioned key features let busy sales reps get a complete customer picture at a glance. Contact information, account history, related tasks and events, sales orders, and more are provided to salespeople.
But when there is a need for customization those features become insufficient. There should be a capability that could let create a custom database free to personalization and specific configuration.
In such situations, CentriQS contact management solution will be of primary importance. CentriQS offers you a complete business management package with customization capability. CentriQS lets you create a contact management database and customize it the way you need.
If to be more specific, you can use CentriQS customization solution to do the following:
- Build a database for keeping your company's business data, including client contacts, sales history, documents, files, etc.
- Add custom entities to the database to model the specific rules of your business
- Specify properties and tables for your custom entities
- Create workflows to model the business processes and activities
- Use OLAP cubes to build analytic views in the database
CentriQS combines all the key features of typical contact management software, plus it provides you with a number of additional features relating to advanced CRM systems. Moreover, you get a complete customization solution which lets you personalize and configure your database according to your business specifications.