Professional Services firms can create efficiencies in managing resources, sales strategy, and project monitoring by integrating the PSA solution with the CRM system.

Growing Professional Services firms that continue to allow different business functions to work in silos are falling behind companies that have built a more connected and cohesive organization. In order to create better processes and workflows, reduce cost of operations, and improve profit margins, you need to have greater visibility across the company.

Greater visibility means you have a better understanding of the business as a whole and greater control in steering the business to a more profitable future. This is where an integration of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Professional Services Automation (PSA) tools can help.

What are CRM and PSA solutions

Every business needs a team that can identify the market needs and articulate how you are the best team to service those needs. What you also need is a system that tracks all the potential clients to market to and have a database of existing clients with information like location, key people in the account, who they are in touch with, in your organization, and what services you have offered them. A CRM helps with all the above.

Professional Services businesses also need a software to monitor projects to ensure that the milestones are met within previously agreed deadlines and within the allocated budgets. This process is more than just tracking time, billable utilization, and profitability checks. It is an end-to-end system that starts with staffing the project with the resources with the relevant skills and having the right mix of consultants to ensure project success and profitability. You then monitor the progress of each project to check for any deviations.

Each of the two solutions perform well in their individual capacity but working in such silos can no longer meet the needs of Professional Services firms that face new challenges as they grow in numbers and take on more complex projects.

Challenges Professional Services firms face

When you are a small Professional Services firm, project staffing, monitoring, and reporting can all be done with a quick call, or a stand-up meeting every week. But, as you grow, these same processes can feel tedious, with you having to request different reports and spend more time compiling all the data. You end up spending more time getting things organized when you could be spending this time analyzing the information and coming up with better strategies.

With each business function working in a silo, you will start to notice gaps in the bid to bill lifecycle. Your CRM data will show you where the opportunities are, but if you go after those opportunities without taking the projects team along, you will be in a situation where you win the deal and then there is a mad scramble to find the right resources to deliver. There will inevitably be challenges and some amount of client dissatisfaction, and an all-round pressure for the entire team.

Over time, these small challenges will become too big to ignore. That is why you need to integrate your CRM with the PSA.

Why integrate PSA with CRM

When you have a seamless connection between the CRM and PSA systems, you can plan efficiently and do more. The automation functionality in modern solutions can optimize the complete bid to bill process and build better collaboration among different departments. Some of the benefits of integrating the two solutions include:

  • Sales teams improve win rates with visibility of past projects delivered, clients serviced, and current consultants and skills available
  • Project teams are better prepared to staff upcoming projects with visibility of the sales pipe and which deals are likely to close soon
  • Improved collaboration optimizes workflows between different teams
  • Complete visibility from bid to bill project lifecycle
  • Real-time access to key information for leadership
  • Faster project staffing and improved matching of consultants to right projects
  • Early insights on changing market needs to align project delivery teams
  • Shift the mindset of the team from being reactive to proactive with improved forecasting capabilities
  • Increase resource utilization by finding relevant work

Integrating CRM and PSA solutions can create new synergies across the business, as long as the solutions chosen meet the requirements of your industry and your business. At sa.global, we offer evergreen, the solution that is designed specifically for Professional Services firms.

evergreen for Professional Services: The integrated solution you’ve been looking for

evergreen is a next generation cloud solution for the Professional Services industry. It is built on Microsoft Dynamics 365, Microsoft 365, and Microsoft Azure, and caters to the needs of AEC, Accounting, Advertising and Marketing, IT Consulting, Legal, and CRO businesses.

With evergreen you will be able to manage:

  • Time tracking and billing
  • Budgeting
  • Accounts receivable/payable
  • General ledger
  • Financial reporting
  • New business intake
  • Collections
  • Complex rate structures
  • Expenses
  • Global finances
  • Foreign exchange
  • Intercompany

Learn more about evergreen and what it can do for your business.

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