Webfortis and Microsoft Team on Apple Watch App for Dynamics CRM
The Apple Watch can now do more than let you check e-mails and make contactless payments on the go. Thanks to a collaboration between Microsoft and Webfortis, the smart timepiece can also provide mobile support for customer service professionals. The new app for Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Parature was unveiled earlier this week at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Orlando.
CRM professionals can use the Apple Watch app to check on the latest status of accounts -- including open service tickets and satisfaction levels -- moments before meeting with customers. With just a few clicks, the app also lets users create service tickets, check connected accounts for information and view common how-to articles related to their jobs.
Webfortis announced the availability of the app at the same time it launched a new mobility practice to focus on the changing demands of its customers. The practice will focus on developing custom mobile solutions for companies that want to access Dynamics CRM and Parature across all platforms.
More Mobile CRM Apps To Come
According to Webfortis CEO Marc Wolenik, the company's new mobility practice is "another stepping stone in maximizing our customers' investments in CRM and Parature." Parature is Microsoft's cloud-based customer engagement solution that enterprises can deploy to provide self-service capabilities to their customers.
Wolenik added that the practice will be supported by a Microsoft mindset of "design once, deploy everywhere" to develop apps to help businesses build brand loyalty across all devices. The Apple Watch app is the first such app, and more are planned in the near future, he said.
In December, Microsoft released a number of major updates for Dynamics CRM and other services. The updates were aimed at enabling users to "break down the silos between sales and marketing to deliver personalized customer experiences," according to Bob Stutz, corporate vice president of Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
'Snapshot' CRM the 'Killer App'
One out of two CRM professionals said that using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets to access their work apps helps to improve efficiency and productivity, according to a 2014 mobile CRM survey from Software Advice, a software advisory company operated by Gartner Inc. Even more professionals -- 82 percent -- reported that mobile access "greatly or moderately" improved the quality of their CRM data.
The most used feature in mobile CRM is sales content management, with 37 percent of professionals reporting using their devices for that application, according to Software Advice. Another popular mobile feature is reviewing and inputting contact information (31 percent).
CRM professionals are increasingly asking, "'Can I get three minutes on my phone or on my tablet to find out one to three things that are important to that buyer?'" noted Craig Rosenberg, co-founder of the research and advisory firm Topo. Accessing the right information at the right time, "is absolutely critical to successful selling. And if it can be on my phone, accessible in seconds, provide me with some kind of snapshot that's easy for me to see -- that is the killer app," he added.