Managing highly complex funding data simplified through CRM

Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority Growth Hub better manages business financial risk through CRM

Signpost 2 Grow is the 3rd largest Growth Hub in a network of 38, serving over 100,000 businesses.

Growth Hubs join up national and local business support, making it is easy for businesses to find the help they need.

With high volumes of business and personal data, Signpost 2 Grow was seeking a CRM solution that could support business needs whilst ensuring compliance with GDPR.

CRM data is used for such purposes as targeted marketing of new products and services, and to support development of long-term client relationships. Information is captured from various sources which have multiple stipulated retention requirements.

"Having up-to-date client data is crucial as without it you risk infuriating clients by asking the same questions time and again.”

Complex funding requires accurate data

A particular challenge for Growth Hubs is management of funding. There’s no capacity for overspending, yet at the same time there are no benefits in underspending.

A further challenge is that work done over and above the purposes of core funding must be paid up-front and reclaimed at month-end, creating negative cash flow.

Finally, for a Growth Hub, the client is not the paymaster. To overcome this there is a need to log activity and demonstrate time spent with clients.

The CRM solution had to be flexible

Whilst many CRM solutions are focused on sales, or oriented to professional services firms, with such complex and unique requirements, Signpost 2 Grow found it difficult to find the right solution.

This is where Workbooks and CRM Insights came in.

“CRM Insights offered flexibility – What do you want from the system? We’ll do it for you. We were able to leverage CRM to not only record information, but to generate management reporting enabling us to generate income.
With CRM Insights’ support, we achieved in only 3 months what would ordinarily take up to a year! In part this is because, with CRM Insights, minor modifications and changes are just an email or phone-call away. There’s no need to wait months for simple changes.
One of the things that really stood out was their quality of training on Workbooks. Whilst there are online training videos, they were no substitute. The training provided made a considerable difference to acceptance and use of the CRM solution.”

Developing a bespoke solution

Once the system was embedded, Signpost 2 Grow was able to demonstrate its flexibility to others within the organisation. This resulted in CRM Insights developing a bespoke element to support the Grants & Loans Service.

Specifically, Workbooks provided the ability to project manage each grant as an individual project. This provided near real-time management information reporting, rather than having to wait until the end of the month.

In turn, this enabled the leadership team to make key decisions, such as stopping a project or reacting quickly to avoid potential pitfalls.

In summary:

"CRM Insights has worked closely with us and we’ve developed a symbiotic relationship.”

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