Undoubtedly, the world is passing the worst time of this century. COVID-19, as we all know, has transformed the way we work. Experts think even after the outbreak of this deadly virus ends altogether, it will have a lasting impact on our working style. Many offices have started their operation remotely, and companies like Twitter already announced that they will continue to do so even after the pandemic is over.
This begs some important questions for companies that rely on constant communication. How exactly do we maintain a close working relationship with the clients while doing remote office? Will it be effective enough? Can we make it work?
Let us show you the way.
This article is all about maintaining close relationship with your clients, even when you’re working from home.
Difference Between Remote and Face to Face Communication with Client
While we think you can cope up with the impact of COVID-19, and handle the relationship with clients in an efficient manner, the way of doing it is certainly not the same as we used to do before.
Remote communication does possess some serious challenges that you need to deal with. For starters, finding your counterpart available when you need, is one of the first and foremost obstacles that you will face. Making sure there is no communication gap between you and your client is another big challenge. Keep in mind that both of you will need to use a digital communication channel, and there’s a good chance that both of you will not prefer the same channel.
However, one thing that will help you both is having a unified ERP channel that will make all the information, meeting schedule, and communication easily accessible. We will talk more about using ERP later in the blog.
Does Maintaining Remote Client Relationship Need an Extra Effort?
While it’s true that maintaining a relationship with your clients while working remotely needs a different approach, it does not necessarily need an extra effort. Once you can get used to the virtual communication channel, there’s a good chance that it will seem even easier and efficient than working from the office.
However, for that, you might need to put in some extra effort initially. Using ERP software will also help your transition to remote relationship management a bit smooth.
How to Maintain Client Relationship Remotely?
Well, we have learned the difference between maintaining client relationships while working remotely and working from the office. We have also learned that the approach to remote office should also be a bit different. So how should we approach to maintain client relationship remotely and communicate like we used to do during face to face meetings? Well, that’s what we’re going to learn now.
Mutually Select a Channel of Communication
This is our first step towards building an efficient way of communicating. These days, there are so many communication channels, that everyone seems to have a different preference. So make sure you find a unified choice, that you are going to use for your communication.
To people who prefer the old school way of exchanging thoughts, email communication is still the preferred option. Though it is not the fastest way to communicate with a large bunch of people, it is surely the most used for business communication.
Another way of communication that has become very popular, is the video conference. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the world has seen one of the largest boosts in the video calling industry. With products like Zoom has seen an unprecedented 353.5% growth from Q4 2019 to Q1 2020, according to S&P Global.
Apart from these two communication channels, you can also opt for real-time chatting. Workplace software like slack will also help you communicate while working remotely.
But in the end, both you and the clients should be okay with the communication channel you choose.
Be Clear to Each Others Plan
Being fully clear to each other’s plans is another crucial way to maintain client relationships remotely. We term this as all-out transparency.
Building trust is now more important than ever, as clients might feel like being left out of the progress. Keeping clients updated on your ongoing tasks and progress is a must-do for a fruitful remote relationship.
However, this might feel like too much of a burden and time-consuming, so we suggest you use ERP software where you can update your work progress and anyone can see that anytime from anywhere. This will make your client feel like being in the loop, resulting in a good relationship.
Chalk out a Communication Plan
Being remote does not mean that you can just communicate anytime you see someone online. For organized communication, chalk out a communication plan with a detailed schedule, which will help you both to allocate time for that period.
Remember, timely communication is one of the biggest ways of maintaining a good relationship with your clients.
Listen to Your Clients – More than Ever
Your clients need your support and attention, more than ever! There is no better way of communicating than sitting face to face and discussing what problem you are facing.
So it’s your duty to listen to your clients and try to solve their problems as quickly and efficiently as you can.
In order to better understand your client’s problems, repeat everything you noted after the meeting. This way no confusion will arise, which we usually experience so many times during remote communication with clients.
Take Assistance from Digital Tools
Technology is bringing us closer, and it is now the most crucial time to bring technology into play. The fact that most of the companies worldwide are being able to continue their office, while some considering moving fully remote, is because of the blessing of the technology.
Without embracing digital tools, the remote office will become not just hard, but impossible. Digital tools like, email, video conferences have become necessary parts of our daily remote office routine.
However, ERP software proved to be one of the most essential tools for the remote office. ERP software helps the process of gathering and organizing business data. Web-based ERP does not only ensure everyone’s access to data and the progress of tasks but also gives you an overall idea of a specific project or a company.
Using these tools efficiently can make your remote office a little less intimidating, while also helping you maintain client relationship.
How ERP Softwares Can Help in Remote Client Communication
As we have briefly talked about above, ERP software can be an essential addition to your remote office. It can help you in many ways, such as –
- Making information accessible to clients and vendors alike.
- Keeping everyone aware of ongoing tasks and priorities.
- Organizing a central task calendar.
- Scheduling meetings with the clients.
- Chat-based communication tool.
All these features are not just important for now, but will also be useful in the future when everything becomes normal again. However, now these features of ERP are more important than ever to keep up a good relationship with your clients, through effective communication and access to information.
There are, however, a lot of ERP software in the market. Generally known as one of the costliest software group, you can find some affordable options as well.
While Microsoft Dynamics, SAP, Odoo are the top grade ERP software with countless features, they also come with a hefty price.
You can, however, opt for a more affordable choice, if you are an SME business owner and have a tight budget to maintain. One such choice is WP ERP, which is a WordPress-based ERP software with an active installation of 10,000+.
WP ERP – Remote Customer Relationship with Ease
It also lets you manage all your clients with its contact feature. You can even create groups and categorize clients.
As the CRM module takes data from the core ERP module, you can easily assign a CRM agent to handle client communication. For communication, WP ERP has integrated a feature for mailing to the client without exiting the ERP solution.
If you prefer direct communication, WP ERP also lets you schedule a meeting or a call. This makes your communication organized and efficient.
Apart from these features, you will get almost all the essential ERP features on WP ERP.
All these cool features are available at a starting price of $9.99/month. Sounds tempting enough?
If you are a business owner, we know that times have never been worse. But even in this dire situation, if you can be able to maintain client relationships and be transparent with them, it will surely help strengthen your relationship with the clients.
Customers deserve to know how much progress you are making and they want to share feedback to make that even better. Offering them ways to do that is the most important thing in this pandemic situation.
We hope you will apply the suggestions and make a better relationship with your customer through it. Don’t forget to share your results with us once you applied the guideline.