CRM solutions can help forecasting processes

Thursday 14 February 2013

Customer relationship management (CRM) solutions can help businesses improve their sales forecasting processes, it has been claimed.

Writing for Business 2 Community, John Cheney said the information that informs forecasting can paint an accurate picture of what is going to convert down the line.

He cited figures from the Aberdeen Group which indicated that CRM forecasting technologies can lead to 17.8 per cent year-on-year revenue growth at best-in class companies.

The industry average is an 8.4 per cent increase in revenues, the company stated.

Mr Cheney said forecasting can be improved in a number of ways.

Firstly, providing cross-functional access to the sales forecast can help improve accuracy, he stated.

"The right CRM system allows all departments to access full customer data so they can see exactly what happened before and what’s happening now to make more informed forecasts for the future," the writer said.

Mr Cheney said analysis is also important - looking at the extent to which individual sales opportunities remain in sales stages too long.

Firms can then work with marketing to improve the nurturing and selling processes for those accounts, regions or sectors, he added.

"With a CRM system that tracks a customer life cycle from lead to invoice to support, getting hold of this data is simple," Mr Cheney said.

Posted by Jenny Arthur