Alarm Monitoring Company Implement Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Logan Consulting Implements CRM at Chicago-Headquartered Alarm Monitoring Company

The Client

Our client is one of the largest wholesale alarm monitoring companies in North America. Headquartered in suburban Chicago, this company works with a variety of business partners throughout the United States and Canada to manage Alarm Services contracts for businesses and home owners. Alarm systems are tested for customers, and then monitored for security and fire situations, while dispatching local police and fire departments as dictated by the customers they serve. During the life of the contract, our client monitors these homes and businesses as well as issues monthly payment invoices for the duration of the contract.

The Opportunity

Our client sought a solution which could capitalize on Client Services, Sales, and Marketing functionality offered by the latest CRM technologies. Critical to the successful launch of the application would be the Client Services branch of the business, and thus would be deployed first, followed by sales and then finally marketing. Our client sought to host the application and have the database and servers onsite at their HQ location, with access to CRM from remote offices in Michigan and Florida as well.

The CRM solution needed to be intuitive and an application which could be taught within a few days. A customer’s account information needed to be easily accessible, as well provide access to invoice, payment, and contract history. The whole idea is that CRM would be able to provide all of this information, thus avoiding the need to access different home-grown applications which had evolved of the years.

In addition, this was a perfect time to evaluate current processes to determine if the processes themselves could be streamlined with the introduction of new software applications. With hundreds and sometimes thousands of calls coming into Customer Care each day, each request needed to be routed to the appropriate resource in a timely manner to ensure customer satisfaction remained strong.

The Delivered Solution

Our client selected Microsoft CRM and implemented all of its modules by first starting with the Service module, followed by Sales, and finally Marketing. Numerous custom objects were created to accommodate the unique data that needed to be tracked for customers with contracts for alarm monitoring.

Current business processes were re-evaluated and streamlined as a result of now having a CRM application, with timing of internal processes greatly improved due to the investment in the new software. In addition, integrations were established using Scribe Insight to their back end financial application Great Plains, so as to allow for visibility of financial information such as credit limit, credit hold and Invoice history. This integration provided the ability to see this information within one single location, the CRM application.

Once Client Services was trained and live using CRM, the focus changed to the Sales Force. Opportunity records were built out to meet the specific needs of the client’s sales force, while custom views provided pipeline visibility to all members of the management team. All critical Emails were tracked within CRM and linked to the Opportunities which were being worked.

Lastly, once the Sales team was trained and had gone live, the marketing team configured CRM and began to run marketing activities to both customers and business partners. Each Marketing Activity was visible within the Contact record of the person receiving the marketing action, making it easy for all CRM users to visibly see those Contacts in the database who were recipients.

CRM in use Day to Day

Microsoft CRM is deployed today to several hundred different CRM users across three different shifts at our client’s business. Numerous queues have been built to accommodate the flow of customer requests through our client to ensure that each customer or business partner request is routing to the proper group. There are hundreds of requests daily for checking of operational alarms, billing requests, and the like which must be routed to the proper staff member to assist using these queues.

The execution of sales pipeline reviews is much easier to conduct now, as Opportunity records have been standardized for all sales team members. Now everyone enters all sales-related data into CRM only, and the pipeline report for all sales reps is run with the expectation that CRM history is current and relevant. This provides visibility to management and allows senior sales executives to assist sales team members as dictated by the details entered within each opportunity record. If deals appear to be growing colder, management will see this detail within the Opportunity record and assist with closure support as necessary.

The billing and collections department can easily see the financial history for each customer since all invoices generated within their ERP application are reproduced within CRM, thus allowing for a snapshot of billing and payment history without leaving one single application. All phone call and note history is visible for the customer record as well, thus allowing for a complete view of interaction by customers with all SAI staff members.

The Marketing module of CRM is used heavily to communicate with business partners/dealers to send announcements and updates to the partner channel. By using marketing activities to accomplish this, each email or letter sent to a dealer is found within the history of that dealer’s record in CRM. This ensures that no discrepancies exist across the partner channel and provide a history of correspondence made. Mail merge capabilities within CRM allow for direct mail pieces to be automatically generated from CRM to Microsoft Word while also creating a historical record for each mailing execution within the history tab of the mailing recipient’s contact profile in CRM.