When building up your Energy Brokering business, one of the most difficult decisions you have to make is choosing the right CRM system for the long term. There are plenty of options out there.
The likes of Salesforce, Zoho and Microsoft Dynamics offer standard off the shelf systems that are built for the masses and, through investment, can be developed in line with your requirements. UtilityClick (and, in fairness, other credible providers) offer a tailored CRM system, built specifically for the TPI sector.
Here we look at potential drawbacks of building your business around a standard off the shelf CRM system:
Initial impressions are that prices per user for standard CRM systems are competitive. However, this is only for their base package. You get the bare bones functionality and service, with these providers banking on the fact that you will need to purchase additional products.
The energy sector is extremely niche. Therefore it is inevitable that you will have to heavily customise a standard system to incorporate functionality for pricing and commission management.
There are businesses set up purely to offer development services for standard CRM solutions. Their services aren’t free and you will end up paying good money trying to tweak the system to fit your business requirements.
There are two modules that can never be incorporated into a standard CRM solution; Matrix Price/Contract Generation and Commission Forecasting/Reconciliations.
You can find a provider that offers API services (such as UtilityClick) but this will mean adding the API costs to your standard CRM subscription. The costs will rise and it’s an investment that could be better used building a fully holistic system.
The energy industry is always changing, which means there will always be a requirement to enhance your CRM. This could be a module to manage Water Deregulation or Bill Validation/Bureau services.
You will not only have to pay for the development of these items, but a good deal of internal resource will be required to scope out what needs to be built, not just from a UI point of view but from a technical standpoint too. Big project!
Training & Support:
Want to pick up the phone to speak with someone about an issue with the system? You’ll likely have to pay for the luxury. Want to have a conversation with someone on a complex Energy Industry scenario you are trying to manage? This won’t happen with a standard CRM solution.
CRM support staff are not experts in the energy space, meaning a lot of time will be wasted trying to explain to someone how you need the system to work.
UtilityClick has been built from the ground up with the Energy Sector in mind. Most of the functionality built in the system has been based on feedback from users who work day in day out in the energy space.
Our team know Energy. If you ask us how to manage a complex tendering structure or how to record MOP / DC/DA contracts, we will immediately understand what you are trying to do.
In brief with UtilityClick you have:
- A system that has been tailored for the energy brokering sector.
- An ever evolving system to keep it relevant with the changing energy landscape.
- All inclusive pricing for support and incremental development improvements.
- A friendly team that can guide you through the process every step of the way – and they know Energy.
If you would like to see a demo of our system and understand more on how our tailored system is a better fit for your business over a standard system, feel free to give us a shout, we’d be happy to show you around.