excel sheets to crm

Is It Time to Move from Excel Sheets To CRM? Here’s What You Need to Know

  • Shoaib
  • CRM, Salesforce Hacks, Technology
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When everything is going well in an organization, change always involves great friction. In most companies, Excel spreadsheets were the norm for meeting their data management and analysis requirements. Introducing an idea about moving from Excel sheets to CRM at any point could be met with great resistance because people become comfortable with the current method.

Even now, excel sheets are used in most departments, even though they end up with errors. Sadly, because of how easy it is to use excel sheets, most departments and their leadership would rather accept the errors than accept new, innovative CRMs and other management systems to revolutionize their operations.

Limitations of using Excel Spreadsheets for Data analysis and management

Although some still advocate for the use of excel for simple tasks in an organizational setup, a keen look into the use of excel sheets reveals serious limitations in key areas shown below:

  • Excel is not always as accurate as people imagine it to be. In fact, a recent study revealed that up to 90% of excel spreadsheets contained errors that are either caused by humans, capacity limitations, or programming errors. Financial models, which are often complex and often draw data from different sources, are likely to yield serious errors in Excel.
  • You are likely to encounter visibility issues when creating complex models. Financial models may require you to input different variables at the same time, but because excel is mostly two-dimensional, this can be serious trouble.
  • Collaboration in excel may prove very challenging. Older versions limit usage to one user at a time. Newer versions have incorporated multiuser functionality but are again limited, especially when different users are pulling data from the same spreadsheet.
  • Excel templates are unreliable, and data entry in such templates is easily affected
  • It can be tiresome keeping track of multiple spreadsheets, especially if you are working on multiple projects and need to send different spreadsheets to different departments for review and feedback

With all these inefficiencies in excel spreadsheets, it’s only logical to buy into the idea of moving from excel sheets to CRM. CRMs come with loads of benefits, primarily measuring and improving existing customer relationships and winning back former customers.

Moving from excel sheets to CRM is no longer just an idea welcomed by large corporations. Startups need CRMs more because they want to start on the right side with their customers, systems, and internal efficiencies. Below are the summarized benefits of CRMS to organizations.

  • One of the prime benefits of CRMs is improved customer satisfaction, which is at the core of business continuity. CRMS allow businesses to streamline all their engagements with customers, from customer service to marketing to the actual selling of your services.
  • CRMs help you improve your customer retention and, potentially, revenue. By having a clear understanding of your customer’s needs and data, you can understand the accounts at risk and resolve it much earlier.
  • With CRMs, you have better internal communication which means better collaboration and effectiveness.
  • CRMs allow you to optimize your marketing efforts by allowing you to monitor and understand customer data and behaviors.
  • Other than just monitoring customer data and behavior, CRMS allows you to gain useful insights into how your organization is performing because all your data is organized and available in one system.

CRMs like Salesforce are revolutionary business tools that have been used by millions of businesses to advance their positions. For organizations still stuck with excel sheets, here’s an opportunity to finally make the move from Excel to CRM.

excel sheets to crmMoving from Excel to CRM

If finally, you’ve decided to shift, here’s how to go about it.

First, you’ll need to learn about a few things about CRMs,  especially if you are considering Salesforce, which is the official leader in customer relationship management.

You’ll need to build your resource hub which should include a list of your preferred Salesforce Consultants and some implementation guides such as this one by Salesforce.

The steps

Once you are well acquainted with the Salesforce implementation process, it’s time to get down to the real work. Get started by crafting a CRM strategy. You do this by defining your business objectives, analyzing and automating your time-consuming areas, bringing the right stakeholders on board, and ensuring your analytics are purposeful.

With your strategy in place, it’s time to gather and import your data, taking stock and putting everything into one master file. Make sure it’s clean by combing through and ensuring all entries are in the relevant fields so you are ready to go once it’s imported in your CRM system.

If combing through large amounts of data to rid it of duplicates proves to be too daunting a task, talk to us and let us help you clean it up. Salesforce also offers reduction functionalities embedded in the Import Data and Data Loader tools that allows you to get rid of duplicate entries.

Once everything is ready, import your data into your new CRM. If this is Salesforce, check out our blog for resources on how to handle your new CRM, or talk to us to get you up and moving with Salesforce.

Author: Shoaib
Shoaib Chaudhary is an entrepreneur and influencer with over 13 years of experience in the technology industry. He’s influencing global leaders to exceed company goals while advancing social responsibility. Shoaib is a certified Salesforce Consultant and professional with years on helping businesses achieve their digital transformation goals.
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