Crm With Workflow Automation

We all know that sales and marketing teams need a CRM to track leads and organize contacts. But what about the salespeople themselves? They need a CRM too! Our CRM with workflow automation allows salespeople to create custom workflows for their different customers based on their needs and purchase patterns. The more time your team spends on reaching out to leads and keeping them engaged, the more likely you are to make future sales – especially when you have support from our enterprise customer service platform, which helps you manage customer relationships over time.

In this guide, we review the aspects of Crm With Workflow Automation, crm and workflow management, what is business automation workflow, and how to create workflow in crm.

Crm With Workflow Automation

We all know that sales and marketing teams need a CRM to track leads and organize contacts. But what about the salespeople themselves? They need a CRM too! That’s where workflow automation comes in. It allows salespeople to create custom workflows for their different customers based on their needs and purchase patterns.

An online CRM, or customer relationship management system, is a tool that enables sales and marketing teams to track and organize contacts through a lifecycle.

CRM is a tool that enables sales and marketing teams to track and organize contacts through a lifecycle. It can also be used for things like forecasting, understanding customer behavior or creating customized reports.

In this article, we’ll explore the ways in which CRMs can automate business processes with workflow automation software.

An workflow automation software, like Workflow Software from Quaderno, will allow you to create custom workflows for your different customers based on their needs and purchase patterns.

When you use workflow automation software, your customers will receive a customized experience based on their needs and purchase patterns. This means that they will be able to complete their purchases easily, which is great for them and good for you! Customers are happier when they can complete their purchases quickly and easily, so they’re more likely to return in the future.

In addition to making your customers happy and increasing customer loyalty, using workflow automation software has other benefits:

  • Your employees can focus on important tasks instead of spending time doing repetitive work that doesn’t require much skill or thought (such as responding to simple customer questions).
  • You’ll free up time for employees who need it most. As an example, let’s say one employee is responsible for collecting data from all new leads—that person might not have enough hours in the day due to having too many leads come through. With workflow automation software from Quaderno, this problem becomes much less common because automated processes allow us to handle the majority of incoming leads automatically so we’re not bogged down with manual work processes anymore!

crm and workflow management

A good CRM solution focuses on the one thing that keeps your business alive – the customer. The best CRM systems offer the most efficient means to reach out and get to your customers as well!

This means your solution should offer a host of tools including workflow automation, contact management, social media management, social listening, analytics and everything else in between that helps you get closer and establish a strong bond with the end focus, that is, the customer.

Now there are a million different CRM solutions out there in the market today offering a number of these features. For the same reason it can be quite difficult to narrow down options and choose the best one.

You ultimately need a solution that best fits your organizational needs and structure. More specifically it needs to fit your internal workflows and enhance it for improved efficiency. Only with a properly defined workflow with clear-cut processes will you be able to determine the right solution needed for your business. And only with the right solution will you be able to reap the benefits of a good CRM solution.

The term workflow essentially describes a sequence of tasks or a series of progressive steps leading up to an end goal in a business process. In CRM, the goal could be to complete a sale or solve a customer complaint or create and launch a marketing campaign etc. In other words workflows clearly define the means and the ways to reach the final objective of a business process.

For example, in B2B business a lead may be captured with an opt-in form on the website. Having checked out a few pages on your website or having downloaded resources on your website, the lead will then be analyzed for quality and probability of conversion. After establishing quality a sales agent is assigned to contact the lead for further nurturing and depending on the lead’s readiness to purchase, other steps for nurturing or leading them further into the sales funnel are then pursued. Once the lead is deemed “sales qualified” or an SQL, discussions, site visits or demos are arranged for the final pitch. If the lead is satisfied the quote is discussed and the invoice is sent. The product or service is delivered as discussed and the accountant ensures settlement of payment within the agreed time.

The above would be a typical example of a CRM workflow in B2B business carried out for pursuing leads and closing a sale.

Back in the day, CRM workflows like these were mapped out and presented in detail with the help of charts, graphs and diagrams for team members to study and form routines with. However, now advanced CRM solutions are used to carry out workflows where tasks can be encoded into the system. Processes can be automated either partially or fully using CRM workflow tools and team efficiency can be increased.

For the same reason, companies now use efficient CRM solutions to complete their CRM workflows and achieve maximum efficiency.

This is where the concept of workflow automation in CRM finds its relevance. A comprehensive solution comes with intelligent automation tools that allow you to identify repetitive and redundant tasks that do not need excessive manual intervention and effectively automate them to speed up the entire process. With CRM workflow automation tools you can fully automate processes or partially automate parts of the workflow according to requirements.

This way CRM workflow automation improves the overall efficiency of sales and marketing teams and allows managers more time to concentrate on creative tasks like strategy development and product ideation.

WordPress ERP has published a complete guide on how you can improve your sales using CRM workflow automation in this post.

Some of the most efficient and all-encompassing CRM solutions available in the market today offer reliable tools for workflow management.

For example, Agile CRM, comes with a full-blown workflow automation segment with tools to define, set and follow-up tasks. It allows you further define priorities, set statuses for customer service queries, and ensure consistency in workflows. It aligns all team members with the steps in the workflow and makes sure that everyone is on the same page, ensuring maximum productivity and achievement of objectives.

In customer relationships it is critical to have entire workflows mapped out clearly to provide seamless customer services. To do so, you first need to have a clear idea of how you are going to incorporate workflow management into your manual system.

Here are the steps you need to follow.

Step 1 – Define goals and objectives of a workflow The first step in employing a good CRM workflow management solution would be to have specific and precise goals and objectives defined in terms of customer relationships, sales and marketing to not lose sight of the end goals. This allows you to better craft the steps required to achieve those objectives, adding and assigning team members wherever necessary.

Step 2 – Figure out manual workflows and identify areas that need automation The next step is to clearly map out the manual workflows and identify areas that are redundant, repetitive, futile and time-consuming to apply automation and speed up those tasks and improve efficiency.

Step 3 – Consult sales and marketing team members for inputs The CRM workflow management tool is ultimately going to be used by your sales and marketing team members. Hence, it is important to consult them – the end users for inputs on what areas they need help with, what areas are challenging for them etc. This is so that you can customize the CRM workflow management tool according to their preferences and make work easier for them

“If you’re not connecting with the people in your organization, you’ll never deliver the experience that you want for your customers” – Lynn Skoczelas

what is business automation workflow

“What is IBM’s Business Automation Workflow?” “How will this affect our processes?” “We just launched BPM– why should we upgrade? Doesn’t it do everything IBM Case Manager already does?” “What’s new?” “Why does it even matter?” “Why did IBM combine BPM and Case Manager in the first place?”

These are the exact questions our clients ask us on a weekly basis since the release of IBM Business Automation Workflow (BAW).

First, let’s start with what it is: Business Automation Workflow (BAW) is a combination of IBM Case Manager (ICM) and IBM Business Process Manager (BPM). This means that IBM has brought case management and BPM features into a single tool: BAW. So, what do you need to know to begin taking advantage of BAW’s new features to create more efficient workflows?

1. Process Designer is here to stay.

With BAW, those who are accustomed to using the old Java Applet-based P8 Process Designer will now be able to start building workflows using IBM BPM Process Designer, a web-based workflow design tool. It offers a more modern workflow-building interface with increased flexibility, features and expandability. Additionally, it’s BPMN-compliant, meaning users can build a workflow in different tools, like Blueworks Live or Visio, and import it!

2. Business Automation Workflow is not a rip-and-replace.

BAW is an evolution rather than a revolution. The P8 Process Engine that you’re used to isn’t going away so everything will continue to work. Everything you’re familiar with and have deployed will continue to function as it has in the past without change. The bulk of your work will come from learning new IBM terminology within the Case Builder and getting comfortable building workflows using the BAW Process Designer (as opposed to P8 Process Designer) with new features. Interested to know what an upgrade to IBM Business Automation Workflow will look like? Be sure to get a free assessment. To learn more, see the end of the article

3. IBM Content Navigator will continue to be the interface.

Breathe easy knowing that any customizations and effort in training and learning to use Content Navigator are still valid. This experience will also make it easier to quickly adapt to other tools in the DBA platform.

Do note, however, IBM has changed the name of “IBM Content Navigator” to “IBM Navigator.” It might be confusing for a while, but if you see IBM referencing Navigator, they are referring to your “Content Navigator.”

4. “Tasks” is now “Activities.”

Remember Tasks? Well, now they are being called Activities. Using the term Activities is more in line with the industry’s term for process fragments, so this is essentially a good change. Most of these changes are cosmetic, but learning and understanding the language that will be used going forward with the workflow pillar will be the first step in the integration of the formerly separate products. Consistency in the terminology is important in the beginning stages of the implementation so you can keep up with discussions around BAW.

5. IBM is still building out user interfaces for Business Automation Workflow.

Because IBM is still building out additional user interfaces for BAW and integrating them into Navigator, we recommend you start to familiarize yourself with IBM’s BPM Process Designer. Focus on the backend process instead of the user interface, since it will be changing in the future. That tool will continue to be used for now.

Note – that the BPM Process Designer is an entirely new tool to build workflows, but it does not significantly change the way in which you design workflows. However, if you are still using P8 Process Designer and know the interface and all the little quirks like the back of your hand, you will have to relearn those in the BPM Process Designer.

Although this isn’t a huge upgrade implementation-wise, it does hold significant changes in the way we define workflow and a lot of the common terminology in IBM tools. Prepare for these changes and you’ll be ready to hit the ground running with this enhanced workflow engine.

The best way to safely implement your first BPM workflow is to pick an activity within Case Manager that doesn’t require user steps such as sending data to a system of record. Use IBM BPM Process Designer to build that workflow. Pick processes with these characteristics that require work only on the backend because the user interface will not be fully integrated until end of 2019. Note that legacy P8 processes can live side-by-side with BPM processes.

6. Migration to IBM BAW must be done carefully.

Whether you’re upgrading from IBM Case Manager, Business Process Management or another business process software, migration is no easy feat. The overall migration process is lengthy and tedious involving multiple steps that must be done carefully in order.

Within the actual migration procedure itself, you must choose between two different methods: migrating artifacts only and migrating artifacts and then business data and applications, which depends on your current system configuration. Then, there are other things to keep in mind such as pre-migration best practices which include:

Migration must be done properly with all steps completed. One missed or improper step could lead to interruption and setback your productivity and cost. For a proper in-depth migration, we offer migration services to ensure a zero risk migration, so there’s no worry about hiccups during your move to BAW.

7. IBM Workflow Center is your go-to for case solutions.

While IBM’s Case Builder page is still available, IBM BAW offers a Workflow Center for your case solutions. The Workflow Center comes with new capabilities including:

Note: Case solutions that haven’t been upgraded to the Workflow Center will be available on the Case Builder page.

8. There is plenty of support available for IBM BAW.

You don’t have to take on IBM BAW alone. We can assist you through any stage when implementing IBM BAW, from a complete assessment of implementing IBM BAW to installation and deployment.

We also offer training to help you learn the ropes of the software, or alternatively, you offer an award-winning support team who can be there to assist you at any time when an issue arises.

how to create workflow in crm

Workflows in CRM allow you to automate simple and complex business processes within CRM. You can either create workflows using CRM out-of-the-box functionalities or write custom workflows with .NET code for implementing complex workflows. Workflow processes run in the background or in real-time and can optionally require a user input.

Workflows can be triggered based on specific conditions or can even be started manually by the users. Internally, CRM workflows are implemented using Windows Workflow Foundation. In this chapter, we will be learning about configuring workflows.

Configuring a workflow has the following major parts (in sequence) −

Synchronous/Asynchronous Workflow

When you create a workflow, you will see the option of Run this workflow in the background (recommended) which determines whether the workflow will run in real-time (synchronously) or in background (asynchronously).

Generally, the recommended approach is to run the workflows in the background since they use system resources as and when available. However, you can always switch back from a real-time workflow to background workflow and vice versa.

Workflow Messages

Workflows can be registered on specific events as follows −

Workflow Scope

Workflows allow you to set the scope in which the workflow will run. Following are the supported workflow scopes −

Workflow Steps

Workflows in CRM are a combination of series of steps which the workflow will follow. You can even divide these steps in logical stages. Following steps are supported by CRM workflows −

Workflow Example

In this example, we will create a simple workflow that runs in the background to assign any newly created Contact record to a specific user and then send out a welcome email to the customer.

Step 1 − Go to Settings → Processes.

Step 2 − Click New.

Step 3 − In the CreateProcess window, enter the following details −

Process Name − New Customer Workflow (This can be any name that you want)

Category − Workflow

Entity − Contact (This will be the entity on which you are creating the workflow. In our case it is Contact)

Run this workflow in the background (recommended) − Check this option as we are creating a background asynchronous workflow. Finally, click OK.

Step 4 − In the New Process Window enter the following details −

Activate As − Process

Start when − Record is created

Click Add Step → Assign Record.

Step 5 − You will see a new step added to the workflow. In this step, we will specify the user to whom all the created contacts should be assigned. Enter the name of step as Assign Record to Team. The Assign option will be defaulted as the entity on which we are creating the workflow (Contact in our case). Click the Lookup icon.

Step 6 − In the Lookup window, select any user that you want. You can even select a specific team to whom you want to assign the records to. Click Add.

Step 7 − Add another step by clicking Add Step → Send Email. In this step, we will configure sending email to the customer.

Step 8 − A new step will be added. Enter its name as Send email to Customer. Click Set Properties.

Step 9 − In the next window to configure email, perform the following operations−

From − Click From field. On the right panel, select OwningUser and User. Click Add → OK.

To − Click To field. On the right panel, select Contact and Contact. Click Add → OK.

Subject − Enter a relevant Subject.

Body − Enter a relevant Body content.

Step 10 − Click Save and then Activate.

Step 11 − In the Process Activate Confirmation popup that follows, click Activate.

Step 12 − Go to Contacts tab and create a new contact. As soon as you create a new contact by saving the record, you will see the Owner field set to the user, which you had configured in the workflow. Also, if you click the Activities tab, you will see an email activity being created for this contact. This confirms that the workflow ran successfully.

Workflow vs Plugin

Workflows and plugins can both be used to extend and automate CRM functionalities. In many scenarios, both the approaches can be interchangeably used in place of each other. For example, if you have a simple requirement of sending an email to your customers, you can either do it via a plugin or a workflow.

So, how do you choose between creating a workflow vs plugin? The following list tries to explain the same −

Although plugins and workflows both can be used to run synchronous as well as asynchronous logic, plugins are generally preferred for synchronous logic, while workflows for asynchronous logic.

Generally, to implement complex business logic, plugins are preferred over workflows. Workflows are preferred when you want to achieve relatively easier functionalities (such as sending emails, assigning users, etc.)

Plugins need to be developed with coding, while workflows can be configured directly by business users without any knowledge of workflows.

Workflows can run on-demand. Hence, if there are requirements where the user wants to run some logic manually, workflows would be a better choice.

From performance impact, synchronous plugins provide a better performance (and throughput) as compared to real-time workflows in scenarios where the request frequency is higher.

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