In a competitive business market, the importance of the system that maintains and fosters growth for one’s customer base cannot be understated. In 2013, expenditures on customer relationship management software increased by 13 percent to over $20 billion, according to Gartner. The technology is not going away anytime soon: Joanne Correia, research vice president at Gartner, notes, "CRM will be at the heart of digital initiatives in coming years. This is one technology area that will get funding because digital business is critical for companies to remain competitive.” With the amount of resources invested in CRM, a company must examine these systems to ensure it is getting the most out of its investment. There are a number of ways to optimize a CRM implementation, but data analytics in particular offers exciting opportunities to drive innovation in the sales cycle. CRM data analytics can enable a business to make the sales process smarter as well as empower field reps with easy access to business intelligence. This is done not only by studying CRM data itself but also by enriching that data with additional information from both inside and outside the organization.
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