Customers make businesses what they are and what they want to be. When you take care of your clients you are taking care of your business. Customer Relationship Management software stepped up to meet this need.

Customer relationship management, (CRM) according to Wikipedia, is a term that refers to practices, strategies and technologies that companies use to manage and analyse customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle, with the goal of improving business relationships with customers, assisting in customer retention and driving. By integrating CRM into all your systems and everywhere you touch a customer the end experience is connected and personal. The expected level of personalized services is higher than ever – the successful company in this crowded market is the one who puts their customers first.

Informed business decisions

Business Intelligence is a technology-driven process for analysing data and presenting actionable information to help corporate executives, business managers and other end users make more informed business decisions. It is a system that has been proven and established over the years with known theoretical methods such as reporting, forecasting and predictive analytics. In Business Intelligence organisations use software applications to analyse raw data. This information is useful to any organisation as it can help with critical decision making that will help cut costs, improve decision making and identify new business opportunities.

Is there an actual need to pay attention to business intelligence?

There are many views and observations with regards to the future value of business intelligence and CRM. Many are of the view that Business Intelligence is going places, and still going there fast. In 2010 Business Intelligence software market was valued at about $7.2 billion, growing at a global rate of 6.5% on an average, which was significant compared to more established enterprise technologies. Could the importance be a business model and publicity stunt for some of these business intelligence software firms? Is there an actual need to pay attention to business intelligence now and in the future? It is expected that Business Intelligence will increasingly make an entry into emerging markets. We have seen Business Intelligence go to every single enterprise application and deliver more value than the sum of parts. It is also seen in helping answer casual user queries, clearly this is a function that every user will always need, be they businesses or individuals.

There is need to incorporate both Business Intelligence and CRM in all business; information obtained from business applications such as bespoke developments by Blue Tea or off-the-shelf packages help you understand your customer better. Some are of the view that Business intelligence will fade into the background and act more as a service that brings interesting and relevant items to your attention (in your social network stream, for example) rather than an application you fire up to find something out. We disagree.

Some reasons why Business Intelligence will add value to your business:

  1. Direct access to enterprise-wide information for business users to make critical decisions. This increases overall company productivity and accuracy.
  2. Improve on your Client Relationship Management by using information obtained to understand your clients better.
  3. Improvement in business effectiveness. This includes better utilisation of business resources by making more informed decisions, consistent views of critical business data, reliable corporate metrics, and the measurement of KPI’s against business goals.
  4. Improved work labour efficiency. This is seen by reducing the total labour cost for IT and increase the return on investment for software and hardware. This will also increase the amount of time that IT can spend on strategic work rather than manual work.

The future of business intelligence and CRM will be shaped by start-ups such as Blue Tea that can make Business Intelligence approachable and easily deliverable to the huge potential in the mid-market.