If you are using a merchant cash advance CRM to help manage your business lending firm, you should probably be aware of the best practices to ensure that you are getting the most out of your CRM. At the end of the day, you have probably spent good money on the CRM and you may have quite a bit of time invested into it, too. If you are not using a CRM to manage your business lending institution, then you need to read my latest post “Business Loan CRM Tech You Can’t Live Without.” Not using a CRM to run your merchant cash advance business is like not using a car as a professional race car driver. It simply doesn’t work.
For those of you that do have a dedicated merchant cash advance CRM, here is a major point you are going to want to get right from the get-go. It’s called your workflow, and it’s the foundation of any CRM you will be using for any type of business. Since we dedicate tons of technology to the finance sector here at Centrex Software, I will be discussing workflow strategies based on our experience and understanding of CRM best practices in this article.
The first thing I am sure that comes into your head when you hear or read about a workflow is “sounds like a lot of work.” Going through your entire business operations, documenting what everyone does, how files pas from one department to another, etc. Even though you should absolutely do that for your business, that is not what I am talking about. When speak with our clients about workflow here at Centrex Software, we ask, “What stages and statuses does your client or file fall into throughout the life cycle of getting a client funding?” It doesn’t matter if you are a broker, a syndicator or a funder. What are the stages and statuses your client will be in as you work the file through to funding? There are several mistakes that we see clients make all the time. You can avoid them and make sure your merchant cash advance CRM workflow allows for more productivity, a higher retention rate for your staff, and higher conversions when it comes to your marketing efforts.
Stages and Statuses Are Not the Same as Tasks
Often times I see business lending companies create tasks in place of their stages and statuses. It is important to understand that stages and statuses are not the same as tasks. Merchant Cash Advance CRMs like Centrex Software have a full task manager built into their CRM to make sure your staff stay on track with their day-to-day operations. A task for example, could be “Contracts Sent” or “App Out”. Tasks can be created in most CRMs to remind the sales rep or the agent to perform that task. A status reflects the current status the client or file is in. For example, instead of “App Out” or “Contract Sent”, if you sent an application to a merchant than the status would be “Merchant Reviewing App”. If you sent a file to a funder for review and underwriting, the status is not “Sent to Lender”, the status would be “Funder Reviewing File”.
I know this may require a serious paradigm shift in your thinking, as it did mine when I first starting learning about CRM platforms years ago. However, if you can implement a workflow that expresses stages and statuses instead of tasks, your team will thank you for it down the road.
Keeping it Simple
Einstein has a great quote that states, “Anyone can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple.” Over the course of about ten years of selling multi-million-dollar enterprise software platforms, I have seen some crazy workflows that probably require a PHD in physics to understand. I can promise you the more complex the workflow, the more difficult you are making it for yourself and your team to do their job. Your workflow should be built in such a way that a brand new employee can look at it, and for understand exactly (at least, for the most part) what it means and its general purpose.
Try your best to consolidate statuses or stages and potentially fill the gaps with custom fields and tasks. For example, I see several CRM users create statuses like “Collect Bank Statements”, “Collect Tax Returns”, “Collect Driver’s License”. Those can all be consolidated into one status called “In Doc Collection.” It’s simple and easy to understand. Another example is creating a different status for loan type or for a renewal. Most merchant cash advance CRM’s have the ability to add a custom field with multiple choice or multiple select as the answer option. Try your best to filter loan types and renewals with custom fields as opposed to stages and statuses.
Automated Triggers and Drip Email Marketing
Your first thought is, “what do automated triggers and drip email marketing have to do with my workflow?” Well, to be blunt, it has everything to do with it. At least within the Centrex Software platform, your workflow is the foundation to almost anything that goes out to a client or a staff member in an automated way. If you are using Centrex Software as your merchant cash advance CRM, then you will have the ability to set up automated tasks, email triggers both to staff and clients, and drip email marketing campaigns. For example, once a status goes from one status to the next, an automated email can go to the client from the assigned to rep on file so it looks like its personal email. Another example, if a client is in a status for a certain period of time an automatic email can go based on that time. So three days in that status, five days in that status, seven days in that status etc etc.
There is a great article here on lead nurturing as it relates to good workflows and email marketing.
The great part about an automated system based on a nicely created workflow is that the system will work on behalf of the sales reps and the company. A sales rep could very possibly come into the office in the morning and have several email responses for clients looking for funding. Another example, an underwriter could come into the office in the morning and see several email notifications with deals that need to be funded. Notifying both your staff and your clients can only help your efforts in growing your business and not hurt it.
Keeping your staff on task each day is truly the name of the game. The more tasks that get successfully completed, the more money everyone makes. Task management is going to be very similar to triggers and drip email marketing as it relates to a good solid workflow. In merchant cash advance CRM within Centrex Software, you will have the ability to have tasks automatically created and automatically assigned to the rep on file based on a status change or a stage change. For example, if a status of a merchant is changed to “In Doc Collection” a series of tasks can be automatically created such as: Collect Bank Statement, Collect Tax Returns, Collect Drivers License, Collect Voided Check.
So at the end of the day if you truly want your business to be at its best when it comes to productivity and efficiency, a solid well thought out workflow will get you a good junk of the way there. What you build on top of that workflow, is what will bring you across the finish line. Think simple!!