Did you just make an investment in Zoho One apps? You made a great choice. Now it’s time to consider how to best use those apps.
In the 25 years we’ve been implementing business applications we’ve been part of many, many successes. Unfortunately, we’ve also been part of quite a few failures. Sometimes, these failures have been our fault. Other times not. But the good news is that I’ve learned.
I’ve learned what people have done to succeed with their business applications—be it CRM, financial, collaboration, communication, or anything else that is included with a Zoho One apps subscription.
So, what have I learned? Four things, actually:
Have an administrator
If you’ve ever heard me speak about CRM or read anything that I’ve written about these applications, then you’re probably familiar with this speech. But here it goes anyway: Have an administrator. This is not necessarily a tech person. It should be a power user. Someone who’s active in your group and knows what needs to be done. If you’re using many Zoho One apps, then this role may be shared among a few people. Regardless of who’s doing this, the responsibilities are the same: the completeness and accuracy of your database. Your administrator needs to own it. When there’s a problem, missing data, wrong information, empty fields—it’s not the administrator’s fault—but it’s that person’s job to fix it and ensure that it doesn’t happen again. You need to invest in that person. You need to provide that person with training, support and resources. That person will be the go-to individual in your company when anyone in your team has a question. Without an administrator, your Zoho One apps will likely not live up to your expectations.
Replace your spreadsheets
A quick win with Zoho One is to eliminate something time consuming and redundant and replace it with your Zoho system. A perfect example is spreadsheets. And don’t even try to deny it: you’ve got spreadsheets tracking sales, inventory, opportunities, quotes, calls and other transactions. Of course spreadsheets have a role in any business. But I’ll bet you’re over-using yours. Zoho One is a database. A database is made up of tables, which are pretty much individual spreadsheets. But with a database, you can input and retrieve data faster, easier, and in many different ways. You’re making your people less productive the more they’re using spreadsheets. So right out of the batter’s box, make it a priority to replace your spreadsheets with Zoho reports and views. Don’t worry – you can convert these things into spreadsheets for further analysis. But you probably won’t most of the time. Plus, these reports and views can be shared with groups of people or automatically emailed when needed.
Have a long-term plan
You are not going to implement Zoho One in 30 days. And you’re not going to do in 90 days, either. Zoho One has 40 separate applications! If you’re getting it, I’m assuming it’s because there are a few that you plan on using in your business. Some are likely replacing existing applications. Others will be used for the first time. These things won’t happen overnight. Have a long-term plan. Create a few simple goals to achieve every quarter. Look ahead 12-18 months and gradually bring the entire system into operation over that period of time. Take a deep breath and do it the right way. Your employees will be grateful that their world isn’t being turned upside down. And you’ll appreciate each new use of Zoho as you start slowly to take advantage.
Sign up for expert Zoho One apps training with Marks Group Live
You’re an expert in your business. You know your products and services. But let’s face it: you’re not an expert with Zoho. You should bring on a partner—someone who’s experienced and certified—to help you. At the Marks Group Live, we have great service and training plans that can help you both with videos and a personalized approach. But there are many other great Zoho partners who you may prefer for any number of reasons.
A good Zoho partner will keep you focused on the features that will provide the most benefits for your company and steer you away from those features that aren’t essential. They’ll help with setup, customization, data migration, integration, automation and implementation. They’ll teach you how to best use the application and they’ll be around if you have any questions or need support. Best of all, a good partner will be your advisor and committed for you to get the most out of the system. If you don’t work with a good Zoho partner, then you’re increasing your chances of failure. Learn more and sign up as one of our subscribers today!