Executive education is a growing market -- and the U.K.-based Cambridge Judge Business School Executive Education program is part of that growth, driving more than $18.5 million a year in revenue with a staff of 40-plus.
This opportunity has led to challenges.
"World leaders and successful business executives take part in our programs, so we have to provide a personalized, top-tier service," said Tim Loynes, project manager of Cambridge Judge Business School Executive Education. "Getting the details -- such as dietary preferences -- right is important. We couldn't do this with our existing system because information couldn't be shared across the organization. This gave us an incomplete picture, duplicated effort, and ultimately meant that we failed to meet key performance targets."
Hunting for a CRM Vendor
Loynes went on the hunt for an enterprise CRM platform to create and manage the programs and keep detailed client data. He needed a CRM solution that linked to the financial system, giving staff access to client and associated budget information. What's more, he needed a web portal to automate key administration processes, such as online payment and course registration. He explored the market, looking at several vendors, including Microsoft and Siebel.
"We're a young, fast-growing organization, so flexibility is key," Loynes said. "Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a modular, scalable product. This makes it cost-effective when compared to offerings from other system providers, which quoted just for the startup project. Microsoft has been a part of our work environment for a long time. Unlike Siebel, there weren't any large-scale retraining issues."
Microsoft Dynamics CRM offers staff detailed client, program, and attendance records viewable on a single screen. This is important for planning, especially when booking accommodations where hundreds of thousands of dollars are spent every year. This was an expensive and time-consuming process in the previous system.
A Self-Service Process
The organization's previous processes also duplicated effort. And there was limited understanding about meeting inter-departmental targets. Loynes said, "Thanks to Microsoft Dynamics, we now have a 360-degree view of all critical administrative and financial data, which is fully accessible and up to the minute.
He also cites improved budget control and better accountability. Program managers can allocate and utilize budgets for programs more easily. They can put together budgets, define them by finance codes, and link them through to suppliers. Loynes said, "Budgets now match because they sit in both finance and CRM systems at the same time. This has made finance a visible process."
Finally, Loynes pointed to greater transparency within task management and more efficient client interaction. The new portal has transformed the way alumni apply for open programs. The self-service process ensures that applicants are responsible for inputting their own records and keeping them up to date.
Posted: 2013-08-19 @ 2:34am PT
Nice article. thank you for the information!
Posted: 2013-08-14 @ 3:04pm PT
Thanks for the great information, Jennifer! It shouldn't be surprising that the utilization and implementation of social CRM, can substantially increase internal/external productivity. Any type of business especially within the education sector, can effectively organize the entire flow of unique client data. Not only will administrative productivity to increase, the administrative staff will attain the ability to understand the needs of each student. The ease and accessibility along with social media integration, allows social CRM to open channels of communication previously unavailable. Therefore, the adoption of an online cloud-based business suite like Greenrope, are now a necessity and the flexibility of functions offered are unparalleled. Furthermore, this encourages a relationship to form between the business and the client. With an intelligent SCRM, the educational organization can actively engage with their clientele and obtain valuable feedback. This encourages the development of a strong client/business relationship, and this level of trust will translate to increased customer retention.