If your growing services business is like most, you use multiple systems and leverage common tools, such as spreadsheets, to share and report data between your departments/teams. But having your data dispersed that way slows you down – your people are continuously re-entering data to ensure that information is consistent, all processes are complete, and everyone has the data they need.
Data re-entry across systems inhibits you in the following ways:
- Delays critical processes, such as project quoting, project phase completion, invoicing, marketing/sales campaign success tracking, and other processes involving data from two or more tools or systems.
- Causes extra work when staff must hunt for information and verify its validity.
- Creates errors because people are human and they make mistakes.
- Leaves people guessing which system holds the most accurate and most current data.
- Wastes management time, as they must build reports versus focusing on business growth.
- Lowers employee morale, as “busy work” makes no one happy.
- Reduces strategic thinking, because there’s no 360-degree total view of your operations and customer relationships.
Your people need a unified system for the data they’re entering, allowing them to fulfill every critical process by enabling a single point of entry.
How to Spot Your Double-entry Trouble Areas
It’s easy to spot the places your service professionals (plus sales staff, support staff, and project managers) are being forced to duplicate efforts to input data and complete processes. For example, when a project is sold, does the data flow automatically from your CRM system into your project system? When project team members enter their time and expenses into the project management system, does the project management system forward those records to your ERP system for billing or general ledger accounting? If a sales team engages a customer, does the CRM show relevant information from current and historical projects to cross-sell or upsell?
The drawbacks of disjointed systems and data are even more evident when you have mobile employees. For example, you have a project team flying to kick off a customer project. While they wait for their flight, can they remotely log into your PM or CRM system and review the data relevant to the upcoming project? On their way home, can they input their T&E data so you can close the books faster?
If your answer to any of these questions is “no,” it’s time for your company to modernize your project management and CRM into a single system with ERP integration that maintains one fully synchronized set of data to consolidate your business processes.
Integrated PM-CRM Is the Answer
TimeLinx is a next-generation project system that integrates with Infor CRM or Sage CRM to enable professional services organizations to connect their critical processes and data faster than previously possible. Using TimeLinx, your sales, service, support, and financial applications work together to maximize customer satisfaction and business profitability.
TimeLinx also allows you to end your reliance on stand-alone tools and their individual data entry requirements. Instead, your employees enter opportunities, project info, time & expense records, schedules, and other sales and project-related data into TimeLinx database once, where it’s integrated with the CRM. Then, because the project data (including how funds are being consumed) is tied to the same customer record as their accounting information and sales order information, your financial applications automatically pull the correct billing information in real time.
The unified nature of the data in TimeLinx and your CRM application ensures that errors are virtually eliminated when sharing data across teams. This speeds up your processes and dramatically raises the quality of life for your frontline staff, as they can now focus on doing their jobs versus doing tedious manual data re-entry. At the same time, your management team can spend more time developing strategies to propel your business forward.
To learn more about unifying your core business processes and systems, contact us today.
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TimeLinx delivers innovative project & service management software as a complete solution that perfects the sell-track-manage-support-bill cycle that services organizations must have to delight their customers; TimeLinx brings the cycle together in a single application that offers less frustration, better project management, complete reporting, and improved profitability – all specially designed for Infor and Sage.