10 Key Steps to Make Your Integration Aspirations a Reality
Due to disparate legacy backend systems, such as ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) an eCommerce business’s critical data can be spread across many unconnected platforms. These “silos” of information are far from ideal in today’s connected retail environment and a Microsoft Dynamics integration could be just the lifeline your struggling eCommerce business needs to regain its competitive edge.
Instant access to accurate, relevant information is critical to fuel agile decision making, empower staff and deliver the personalized experience your customers expect. The business benefits of integrating your eCommerce, ERP, and CRM platforms are substantial and immediate.
In this article we’ll explore 10 key steps you must consider to make your integration aspirations a reality, with all that means in terms of improved ROI, empowered staff and happier customers.
Make a start with Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce
There’s an old Chinese proverb that says “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” This is relevant to your organization’s deliberations on the right time to get started on the systems integration path.
If you’re not integrating your key systems and reaping the benefits, your competitors surely are. The bottom line is that if you haven’t already “planted your integration tree” you need to get started and you need to get started today.
Integrating eCommerce with your backend ERP and CRM systems is something you absolutely need to get right first time, and that means a significant planning effort upfront.
While gearing up for a Microsoft Dynamics integration, careful consideration needs to be given to business continuity and meeting customer expectations during the transition.
Avoid “garbage in, garbage out”
The integration process presents the ideal opportunity to “clean” and streamline data from your various disparate systems. The effectiveness of your new integrated solution is heavily reliant on the quality of the data that fuels it and building it on a solid foundation of genuinely useful and accurate information is key.
There can be a temptation to include every possible feature a Microsoft Dynamics integration solution has to offer. While it’s true you want to get maximum functionality from your newly integrated setup, the process is the ideal opportunity to simplify systems rather than making them more complicated.
Keeping it simple yet effective means you’ll gain maximum benefit from your investment in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce at optimal cost.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce facilitates tight integration
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Retail is a unified commerce solution that facilitates end-to-end integration across multiple retail channels. It empowers retailers and workers to achieve more by working smarter in the cloud with functionality that includes sales, intelligence, and productivity. Deliver immersive customer experiences across all touch points and support an extensive range of retail processes such as inventory, channel management, and merchandising.
Automate everything possible
While we told you to keep your installation as simple as possible, that doesn’t mean you should focus on deploying the automation capabilities offered by Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce. The workflows, task management, and artificial intelligence built into the platform will enable you to work smarter and faster then ever; revisit your processes and automate wherever possible.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce lets you view critical data across your entire retail operation in near real time. Having instant access to such accurate and timely data empowers you to make agile business decisions and helps keep you one step ahead of the competition.
By leveraging the comprehensive analytics now available to you at the touch of a button, you truly are back in the driving seat with the guesswork firmly behind you.
Train your users
It’s important to manage the change that your new integrated solution will inevitably bring and that means making sure that users are fully trained and made aware of how they too can benefit.
For example, customer-facing staff become better at their jobs armed with detailed customer information from your CRM system readily available on any device.
Support your key systems
The solution you architect to integrate your eCommerce with your backend ERP and CRM platforms should enhance the functionality of your existing key systems.
The objective is not to “throw the baby out with the bathwater” but rather to optimize and build on systems in which you’re already invested. Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Commerce is a true end-to-end solution that connects and expands on the functionality of your existing eCommerce, ERP and CRM platforms. Naturally, the integration process presents the opportunity to add additional functionality (always bearing in mind the KISS principle of course).
Choosing the right integration partner
To successfully integrate eCommerce, ERP and CRM you must choose your integration partner carefully. Look for a company with a track record of the successful implementation of integration projects – the last thing you want is to be a test case for an inexperienced partner.
Korcomptenz is proud to be celebrating 15 years in the business of delivering integration solutions across a wide range of verticals including retail.
We look forward to partnering with you and making you our next integration success story. Request a Consultation today to learn more!