Prospect CRM is a hierarchical database which can be explained visually with the tree structure.
By default, the CRM will guide you to create records using the standard hierarchical structure, where the Company sits at the very top of the tree.
The Company level is where you can store information about each business you work with. Using Company Types, you can differentiate them by assigning the type of relationship you have with them e.g. prospect, customer, supplier etc. It's at this level where we integrate with your Inventory Management, Accounting or ERP system, and is where the Sales Ledger and Purchase Ledger codes are held. This allows us to access important customer information and sales history, making it available for your customer-facing teams.
If you work with a business that has more than one office, read the next section about the Advanced Hierarchy and using Company Groups.
You can then add and manage the Contacts (people) that work at that Company. At each Company, you should create a Contact record for every employee that is relevant to your business. At this level, you can add unique information about that person, including their name, contact information (email address, phone numbers etc.), and marketing preferences.
Where there's the potential to sell to a customer, prospect etc., an Opportunity should be created directly under the Contact you're speaking to.
Opportunities are used to track a sales opportunity, or potential sales opportunity, from the moment you decide a client is interested in a product of yours, right through to you winning or losing the sale.
At the Opportunity level, we capture some basic information, such as a description of the Opportunity, the potential size and margin of it, the date you expect it to be ordered and the likelihood that the customer will order it by that date. The combination of all these details being filled in allows for more accurate, intelligent sales forecasting, so it’s important to fill in as much as you can.
Should a customer issue or query arise, Problems will help you keep track of it and manage it through successfully to a positive outcome.
Problems capture information about the issue such as a description, type etc. Again, by filling out as much information on a Problem record as accurately as possible will allow for more intelligent reporting to highlight potential service/process issues, and some information can even be used in search and replace documents when communicating with the customer.
Note: You can create Opportunities and Problems under other levels of the hierarchy (Company etc.). but it's strongly advised that you create these under a Contact where possible to ensure correspondence with each customer is kept in one, easy to find place, and enables teams to quickly see which person is associated with each Opportunity/Problem.
Interactions (Documents/Quotes etc.)
Underneath each Contact, Opportunity and Problem is where you can log interactions. This might be email correspondence, documents you've sent like PDFs, or perhaps making note of a phone call you had.
At each level of the hierarchy, you see a consolidated view of all the child items. For example, at a Company level, you can see a summary of absolutely everything; all Contacts at that Company, and all interactions with all of those Contacts.
If you work with customers, prospects, suppliers etc. who have more than one office/multiple sub-companies, you'll need to make use of the Company Group entity which sits above the Company entity.
Company Groups are companies with multiple locations/offices that are part of the same group. These will have more than one sub-company sitting directly underneath.
Sub-companies are only used when a Company Group has been created, and have the same icon as standard Companies (Single Companies).
Sitting directly under a Company Group is a Company. Companies should be used to distinguish different physical offices. For example, if "Browns Distribution Limited" is the Company Group, "Browns Distribution Sheffield", "Browns Distribution Leeds" and "Browns Distribution Portsmouth" would be Companies underneath. You can then create Contacts, add an address/location etc. to each individual Company to make them unique, whilst keeping them under the same overall Company Group.
Understand more about the differences between Companies and Company Groups here, or to convert a Company into a Company Group, check out this article.