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CRM and Telephony: The Top Three Benefits of an Integrated System

These days, it can feel like the technology of yesteryear has been completely replaced. Magazines and newspapers have been replaced by blogs and podcasts. Mail reaches us largely through digital channels. Many phone calls have been replaced by text messaging. However, there is one place where talking on the phone with another human being still reigns supreme: customer service.

A 2019 survey from research firm Clutch found that some 90% of respondents prefer talking on the phone to a person when dealing with customer service issues. For individuals working in student services, these results mean two things — that telephony is just as important as ever before, and that their telephone systems need to be integrated with their current CRM. This is particularly true in the world of higher education; the students calling school administration need guidance to continue their academic journey, so excellent customer service is critical to their future.

Here are the top three ways that combining CRM and telephony can benefit your business in the long run:

1. You Can Collect Data on Every Call

Higher Ed staff rely on feedback from students and employers to improve the service they provide and offer a greater overall experience. To effectively give this feedback, institutions need to collect massive amounts of data.

Higher Ed Phone Call

A typical customer service telephone system records the call for training purposes, but its data collection process ends there. By contrast, CRM systems with built-in telephony allow you to collect much more data about both the student and their interaction with the school representative. Administration can measure call rates, revue for quality, and countless other data points that can help with training and guarantee that the institutions service becomes better and more efficient.

2. Your Calls Will Be Quicker

Nobody likes waiting on hold – and people like it even less when they’re waiting to talk to their school administration. Quick, efficient calling is essential to keep your students or clients happy, and therefore you need some automation to speed up the process.

Many CRM systems with built-in or integrated telephony offer one-click calling. This feature allows representatives to accept incoming calls or place outgoing calls with a single click. This shaves seconds off each call, which adds up to a whole lot of time saved for other callers in the queue. One-click calling also allows your reps to help more people in a single shift, ultimately making more students happier each day.

Additionally, telephony-equipped CRM can help your reps leave quick and concise voicemails. The CRM can automatically popup detailed information about the student or prospect, which can inform the rep of previous conversation history for a more personalized experience. This simple solution will save massive amounts of time and allow your reps to focus on the more important elements of the conversation.

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3. Your CRM Will Facilitate Personalized Interactions

Finally, we can discuss the greatest benefit that comes from a CRM with telephony: personalized customer experiences. This is particularly true in higher education, where the student’s experience with administration helps shape their academic journey – and ultimately, their future.

When someone calls a college or university’s admin office, they don’t just want someone to hear their grievance or answer their question; they want to know that the school values them and wants to help them succeed. The best way a rep can do is with personalized interactions.
Of course, it is hard to offer personalized service when a student seems to be one of thousands. This is where CRM can come in handy: the system can build a student profile over time, filled with essential data your reps can use to provide the best possible service. This can include enrollment information, current course loads, conversation history and notes, level of interest on specific campaigns – all elements that can yield terrific insights and help your reps better serve the student.

College Admissions Tour

If your CRM is connected to your telephony, this profile can be linked to the student’s phone number as well. This will ensure that their student profile populates in the system as soon as the rep receives the call – guaranteeing that your rep has everything they need to help. The benefits that come from this simple (yet intuitive) idea are invaluable, as it can help improve a student’s perception of their college with a single call!

Whether you work in higher education, retail, B2B, or any other business, your customer service team can benefit from a CRM system with built-in telephony. This technology brings customer service calls into the 21st century, taking your team – and by extension, your business – to the next level.