I've been looking for the right web based CRM for my business. Most CRM's are focused on the sales process but I need something with a slightly different edge. I use the term dispatching in the title because its the closet word I can come up with to describe.
The business model is simple, we get leads from our online form (our leads will be referred to as Clients) who need handyman work (from our contacts known as Contractors). They are added to our CRM at which point we can access assign a Contractor. We sometimes assign multiple Contractors to a project and through the CRM, phone or email we get bids on the project and a winner is chosen. More often, we just assign one appropriate Contractor. At that point we facilitate contact, and manage the project in a very hands-off way, essentially just making sure communication channels do not decay and that follow up is made on each step. A lot of that is automated.
Most CRM's can handle the above, although I'm finding some do it better than others and I'd rather it be less clunky, obviously.
Throughout the process we need certain tasks to be automated. For example, 2 days after the project is entered (the Client lead assessed and converted) we need an email to go out to the Contractor and the Client. Both emails vary slightly and will merge project details into the email.
Hello [Contractor/Client], did [so and so] reach out to you about [some project]?
We have various checkpoints like this mostly based on time and project conditions. Some create a task for us, some send out an email. An email reminder get's sent out when a project has been on hold for 45 days, for example. I won't go into each one, if we can achieve the above listed already, we should be able to do the rest.
Our Contractors and Clients are housed in accounts on our current system and are backed up as CSV files which I modify for import. We have contractor bid history saved as well which would be important to retain. Importing is usually a given with most CRM systems.
We do not inovice anyone through our system but this would be value added.
We're switching because our current platform is no longer supported. Plus, it was also fairly outdated, and we hope to find something better not just something adequate.