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Maximizing workflow automation in your CRM to shore up internal processes

Keep your business workflows running smoothly in the face of employee turnover

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Author photo: Katrina Oko-Odoi

Katrina Oko-Odoi

Sr. Content Marketing Manager

Now that we're facing our next big workforce challenge, the Great Resignation, what may seem like another hurdle may actually become a terrific opportunity to not only deepen customer relationships, but also to finally tighten up those internal processes.

Too often, we see businesses relying on one or two employees to be the key information bearers. They’re the links between point A to point B, the keepers of passwords and the holders of crucial business information.

We love these people, right? But what happens if one of these core people leave? No one likes to think about it, but with the unpredictability of the Great Resignation, you don’t want to be in a position where you’re relying on one or two employees to keep the operations ship afloat.

Now, more than ever, finding ways to streamline and automate your business processes so you aren’t relying on the knowledge of one or two key employees becomes integral to operating without big interruptions.

And while the directive may sound totally overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. Using CRM and workflow automation can prepare you for whatever comes your way.

So what is workflow automation, anyway?

We hear it all the time, but what does “workflow automation” really mean?

Workflow automation is simply the process of automating manual tasks using rules and triggers inside of software. The goal is to accomplish routine tasks without the need for human intervention.

Automation becomes a no-brainer for teams simply because it helps free up time to focus on the things that demand more focus, like building relationships and closing deals.

With workflow automation, you can do things like:

  • Send emails
  • Create tasks
  • Schedule meetings
  • Create leads
  • Monitor opportunities
  • And more

When you set up CRM workflow automation, you can streamline your entire sales pipeline. From lead creation to follow-ups, the whole process can be automated to ensure no lead or opportunity slips through the cracks.

  • So, rather than manually creating a lead every time someone fills out a form on your website, you can set up your CRM to automatically do it for you.
  • Rather than relying on manual admin work to monitor and schedule meetings, you can automatically schedule them with your CRM.
  • Rather than tracking Opportunities and following up manually, you can set up automatic reminders and tasks (like email follow-ups) – no human required!

Automation’s numerous benefits include reduced costs, fewer errors and increased efficiency. And now, as we work through the Great Resignation, workflow automation could be the key to keeping your company moving forward. Here’s why:

When you automate your sales and business processes, you don’t have to worry about everything falling apart if someone leaves. With CRM workflow automation, your core processes will run regardless of any internal shakeups.

CRM and workflow automation in action

So, what kind of processes can you automate inside of your CRM?

One of the most beneficial ways to utilize CRM workflow automation is to automate task creation. For instance, you can get Copper CRM to create specific tasks automatically when:

  • A Lead is converted to a Person
  • An Opportunity moves to a specific pipeline stage
  • A new Lead reaches a number of days old
  • An Opportunity remains inactive for (X) days
  • And more

By setting up tasks, you ensure no lead or opportunity falls through the cracks. This is one of the best ways to take advantage of CRM workflow automation, especially when you’re worried about potential internal changes.

You can also eliminate manual activities, like calculating commissions and sending follow-up emails. By removing the mundane tasks, you’re freeing up your team’s time and boosting accuracy and efficiency.

Here’s a real-world example: Let’s say a person downloads a free trial of your software from your website. Rather than having someone manually create that lead and begin the sales process, you can use Copper to trigger several actions automatically.

The second they download:

  • A new lead is created in Copper
  • A welcome email is sent
  • Your Salesperson, Jessie, will get a task to call the new lead in 3 days
  • Reminder follow-ups are scheduled periodically throughout the next 30 days

You can customize your automations to fit your specific sales pipeline and needs, but you get the point. With CRM workflow automation, everything happens automatically. If someone leaves, those leads and processes will still occur.

The best part about Copper’s CRM workflow automation is that it’s super simple to use and deploy.

How does CRM workflow automation work?

In Copper, workflow automation works using trigger and action-based logic, like, “When X action happens, then trigger Y.” For example:

  • (trigger) When a visitor fills out the website’s contact form, (action) create a new lead in my CRM. (using app connection with Zapier)
  • (trigger) When a new lead is created, (action) create a task for the sales team to contact
  • (trigger) When a new lead is 3 days old, (action) send a follow-up email

Filter logic can also be a bit more complicated and include “AND” and “OR” logic and specific operators, like “Equals” or “Greater Than.” For example:

  • If an Opportunity status is changed to Won AND the purchase amount was Greater Than $5,000, Schedule a task called “send a thank you gift.”

To create a CRM workflow automation in Copper, you simply go to Settings > Automation > Workflow Automation. From there, click “Add Workflow” to get started.

You’ll start by naming the automation and setting up the trigger. Then, you’ll set specific conditions, aka criteria that must be met for the trigger to fire and filter conditions. Then, you’ll set up the resulting action. Finally, hit save and turn the automation on.

And that’s it! After you’ve finished those steps, you’ve successfully set up an automation inside of Copper. (Click here for a more detailed, step-by-step guide for creating workflows inside of Copper).

How integrations can help automate your processes

Because businesses use multiple applications to manage their customer base, with the same customer information across them all, updating these systems manually can result in disarray. Relying on one or two people to enter data correctly and in a timely manner just won’t work, for all the reasons we’ve already mentioned.

Let’s say one of your sales reps just closed a deal. Your implementation team needs to get started on the project right away, but they work in another application. Tools like Zapier can connect Copper with your project management software to automatically write the correct data directly into the project management system as soon as the deal closes. Zapier can also be used to write data into Copper’s Activity feed when certain milestones are reached in the project management system, allowing the sales rep to see the updates without having to leave Copper or rely on anyone else for visibility. See our Zapier directory for a full list of apps that you can connect to Copper.

Using your CRM and workflow automation to navigate staff changes

One positive thing we can say about the turbulence of the last few years is that it has made us all a bit more resilient. We’ve had to become quicker on our feet and more innovative in order to thrive.

Automation is one of the ways businesses pivoted during the pandemic. A case in point: 63% of small businesses relied on some type of automation to pivot during the pandemic, found research by Zapier.

Now, as we navigate unprecedented employee turnover, it’s time to finally streamline and simplify your in-house processes and make sure your business and processes keep rolling.

CRM workflow automation is an easy way to automate manual tasks and keep things running smoothly no matter what happens. Automating your CRM sales workflow ensures your relationships with your leads, customers and team stay solid—even if you lose a team member or two.

Thankfully, with Copper CRM, it’s easy to automate, simplify and scale. To learn more about our sales workflow automation, click here.

Or, if you’re new to Copper, try us free for 14 days to see how our relationship-centric CRM makes it easier to build and maintain enduring customer relationships.

Try Copper free

Instant activation, no credit card required. Give Copper a try today.

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