Can CRM Help With Compliance?

Customer Service

As many small to midsized businesses flock toward new state-of-the-art Customer Relationship Management solutions and other related tech tools and vendor products, many are seeing the biggest single benefit of these resources as the way that CRM supports sales and helps to provide better connections with customers. It’s true that this is the main aim of this kind of software, but adopting CRM tools also comes with some other “side benefits” for many clients.

One less talked-about aspect of using a CRM platform within an enterprise is that these kinds of tools can also help with a lot of the issues that many businesses do with around security, privacy and compliance with industry regulations. Now, there’s a lot of ground to cover when you’re talking about compliance, but in some industries, the majority of compliance issues boil down to a focus on protecting customer data. With this in mind, there are some major ways that using vendor-supported CRM services can help.

“In-House” Customer Profiles

One of the biggest no-brainers here is that a CRM interface set up for a single client is inherently more private, as an internal resource, than something external like a social media site. Some businesses can tend to get too tangled up in prominent social media platforms where the majority of interactions, and even recorded data, live in a “public” (non-proprietary) space. While businesses have been using Facebook successfully in many ways, relying on social media giants for customer relationships can have its downside: this article from WebProNews outlines “Facebook banning” and some other problems that can have a detrimental effect. Beyond this, though, there is a natural level of what you might call “Facebook fear” growing in both the personal and the business world, with many of us entertaining the idea that having so much data migrating through “free” social media platforms may not be the best strategy in the long run.

With CRM tools, it’s possible to continue having a Facebook presence, while bringing more of a firm’s interactions with customers in-house. Data can be funneled from social media directly into the CRM interface, where executives may have a lot more control over how it is used. That’s one broader way that custom CRM solutions can enhance privacy, and thus, help with some compliance issues. For more on using Facebook as part of a greater enterprise strategy, check out this helpful “Facebook guide” from Mashable.

Designed for Compliance

CRM vendors can also offer products that are optimized according to a company’s place within an industry, and what kinds of privacy or information handling that business needs in order to stay clear of problems in audits or inspections. Cloud security is one common pillar of a well-designed CRM service, but other aspects of these tools can also be engineered for better data safety and achievement of industry standards, whether it be health care laws like HIPAA, regulations for financial businesses, or just your garden-variety transaction handling security.

Clarity of Information

Yet another way that CRM can help is by building clear and available profiles of customers that may show employees how to better practice compliance with each individual call or interaction. One simple example is a CRM product that shows the customer’s status on the “do not call list.” something that can be hard to pin down without specific resources in place. Any time there is a question about the customer’s status, well-designed CRM will throw the right information in front of the right people at the right moment, which can be extremely valuable from a compliance standpoint.

Look for affordable, fully supported CRM products that provide the right security, and privacy, for a growing business.

Justin Stoltzfus is a freelance writer covering technology and business solutions at Techopedia, Business Finance Store and Ringio, focusing on emerging trends in IT services.

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