Regen SW is a not-for-profit organisation that is the leading centre of sustainable energy expertise. The company’s mission is to create jobs and enable growth within businesses, local communities and other organisations, with a focus on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. The company’s work can range from technology acceleration projects, to shaping government policies around energy, both at a national and European level.
The nature of their business means that Regen SW don’t really sell products but act as an independent centre of expertise and an advisory services provider. Their work is relationship driven and a CRM system was essential to enable them to manage their data, have visibility of the links between different organisations and people, as well as monitor and trace exactly who had been contacted and when they were contacted. Lee Richards, Programme Manager at Regen SW, pushed for a CRM system to streamline their reporting process. “Without a CRM system it was impossible to see everything coming together into one place and it was very difficult to run accurate reports quickly. We did have Access Database but it regularly had to be cleansed and manually pulling information from various spreadsheets was a time consuming process.”
Regen SW had to go out to tender. Lee looked on a referral site and Workbooks was one of the CRM vendors that came out on top. The company also looked at some of the big brand names such as Microsoft Dynamics and Salesforce, however, Workbooks fitted more closely with Regen SW’s requirements because it was not strictly a sales focused CRM solution. Lee explained, “We were really drawn to Workbooks because it was not simply sales orientated, there is a lot more cross-over with other parts of the business and this made it a good fit for us. Other factors that were pivotal in the decision process were the fact that it was incredibly easy to use and it is very adaptable and easy to customise.”
Another key requirement for Regen SW was that the system was an online, cloud-based system. “We have a lot of project managers working on different projects and in different sectors.” said Lee, “It was therefore vital that we implemented a system that could be accessed from anywhere, at any time, and with Workbooks this is possible”
Implementation ran smoothly for Regen SW and Lee said that the training and support was crucial to get the entire company to start using the system; “Getting the team to use the system and come on board was a challenge. The Workbooks team helped with suggestions and ideas of how to get internal buy-in. This really accelerated the speed at which we started to get value from the system.”
Regen SW use the Workbooks system to keep a record of the different projects that they are working on and the different people that they are working with. The main benefit for them has been the ability to manage their relationships effectively. Lee explained, “People can get data quickly and use it effectively. Workbooks has helped us win work because we can get information to people quicker and it has helped us find work because we have better visibility of the people and organisations that we should be contacting.”
In addition the Workbooks reporting functionality has been a huge benefit for Regen SW. It has enabled them to report on the progress of their projects and manage their orders. Lee went on to say, “Workbooks has freed up a lot of man hours and has proved to be cost saving. I would estimate a reduction of about 25-30% of the time spent on reporting and this is a huge advantage for us as we are regularly required to report back to other people and other businesses. For instance, we deliver a lot of European and government funded projects, and we are able to report back to relevant contacts outside the organisation very easily as soon as they have requested the information from us.”
Having used other CRM systems previously, Lee has always been an advocate of the benefits of a CRM system. Workbooks has enabled Regen SW to streamline their business processes and Lee commented, “I would certainly recommend Workbooks to other companies and I have already done so in the past.”