CRM Software offering real-time insight into lead and contact management has become a critical component of modern Sales and Marketing. Most organizations use popular CRM like Saleforce or Microsoft Dynamics or custom developed CRM application. These are either hosted in the Cloud and SaaS based or, custom developed Applications hosted internally in-premise.
The need to achieve greater customer contact by smarter and quicker lead penetration while maintaining organization-wide visibility is by far the most important objective for a CRM integration to a Dialer platform. Dialers have been an integral part of most call center software suite and come with their own user-interface as well as agent-customer interaction script building tool. CRM on the other hand will have a separate user-interface view offered to its users. The main focus of integration of the CRM software with a Dialer platform is to be able to make customer contact with warm/hot leads in the CRM and keep the status of the lead published. This is especially important for medium and larger organizations using contact centers for customer contact. Call Center software offers Dialers that are very sophisticated, capable of Predictive, Preview and Progressive dialing. It is important not to give up these sophisticated list and contact management automation capabilities while synchronizing with a CRM.
One popular method of achieving Integration of CRM and Dialer platforms is to plan for data synchronization using Web Services like SOAP, XML-RPC or even plain XML DTD over HTTP. Popular CRM like Salesforce provide Web Services API that allow data inserts and updates. Sophisticated Dialer and Contact Center ACD platforms provide their own Web Services API as well. Dialers with sophisticated customer contact list management will allow list based dialing in Predictive, Preview and Progressive modes. One example of data synchronization is using a Web API within the Contact Center Suite that will allow hot lead insertion at the very top of the list for immediate dialing. The CRM can be updated with the lead status before and after the dialing to ensure propagation of the lead status from the Dialer to the CRM. Q-Suite, a popular contact center suite for Asterisk with a well developed Web services API, offers such capabilities.
Dialer integration usually conjures up the image of “dial” button on the CRM screen. This is fairly primitive approach and all it does is relieve the difficulty of using a phone to dial the number. It may seem simple enough to place a Dial button on the CRM screen that can trigger dialing from a Dialer platform but introducing CTI functionality into a CRM screen would require a lot of programming and the willingness of the CRM provider to open it up for additional code development.
Generally not every user of the CRM is a customer contact center agent. Therefore the strategy of moving data in and out of the Dialer database and keeping it synchronized with the CRM is a cleaner and more efficient way of CRM integration. There are very powerful Call Center Software Suite for Asterisk platform with Web API that can work well in the Cloud as well as on-premise.