Written by JENELLE DEMARCO 04/01/2021

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software has many features, including sales automation features, marketing automation features, and customer support features. Using your CRM for simple customer management is not the same as implementing a professional customer support workflow.

I have spoken to many customers who assume using CRM for customer service means to manage your customer accounts, log notes and follow-ups, etc. The truth is most CRM systems include a suite of customer support features that can improve your support operations, and streamline your customer service process.

We will discuss how to use your CRM for customer support, and how to build a customer service workflow.

Case Management

The Cases module is the main support module of the CRM system. Cases are another name for support tickets. Cases are the issues, questions, and requests your customers submit to your support team.

When a customer calls or emails your service team a new Case should be created in the CRM, linked to the customer's account record. When you open a customer's account record in the CRM, you will see all of the Cases (both open and closed cases) in a related list. This helps you manage and track at a glance if the customer has any open cases i.e. issues they are waiting for help to resolve.

The workflow is simple, when your support representative answers a customer phone call, first the rep pulls up the customer's account record. Then they click "New Case" under the related Cases list to create the case i.e. support ticket.

After doing this there will be a record of the issue the customer is waiting for help with, and your entire support team will be aware of it.

Solutions

Another customer support feature is the Solutions module. Solutions are a knowledge base for your support team to use to help them solve cases (customer issues).

If the customer support representative begins to work on an open case but doesn't know how to resolve it, the CRM system will automatically display possible Solutions to the problem.

If they use one of the solutions to solve the case, it will link to the case so you have a record of it's usefulness. You can also run reports on this data so you can have a better idea of which issues your support reps need more training on.

Solutions are pre-written by you for your support team to take advantage of. If there were no available solutions to help solve the issue, your reps can create their own to help other reps in the future solve the same issue.

Email to Case Feature

Another great feature to take advantage of for your support workflow, is the email-to-case feature. Email-to-case automatically creates new cases whenever a customer sends your support team a new email.

This feature is different than the CRM mail sync feature, which automatically syncs all of your employees inbound and outbound email to the correct customer in the system.

The email-to-case feature essentially turns your CRM's cases module into a support ticket system. Whenever a new email arrives in your support mailbox the system creates a ticket i.e. case, automatically. Your support team can reply to the cases from within the CRM, and any replies to the ticket, either from the customer or from your support team will automatically appear in the original case's activity timeline.

This feature eliminates data entry, and allows your support team to continue to use email as the primary mode of communication for service requests.

It is worth mentioning that this is an optional feature, one best taken advantage of if your support department primarily works out of a single support email address.

Wrapping Up

There are other customer support features to take advantage of, but these three can turn your service department into a professional operation immediately.

If your current CRM system does not offer these features or you think they charge too much for some variation of them, you should check out the pricing and configuration page for Snapforce.