Introductory tour CRM

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Customer Relationship Management System Introductory Tour

Clock - Total tour time: 1 hour

Warning You will need the following:

  • Webrecs Cloud subscription - if you don't have one please go to the The Webrecs Shop for a one month free trial.
  • Browser (preferably Chrome)
  • Browser popups enabled


Welcome to the Webrecs Introductory Tour for our customer relationship management system, where we hope to give you an idea of the sorts of things which Webrecs can do which will make your dealings with customers, leads, accounts, staff and even other 3rd party stakeholders more efficient, manageable and enjoyable.

The Webrecs customer relationship management system is a highly customised, hosted version of the SuiteCRM Open Source customer relationship management system. Check out the SuiteCRM | site to access plenty of details about the standard product including the SuiteCRM Cloud version.

Webrecs has taken the base product and applied over 7 years' worth of development consisting of over 100 bug-fixes, custom features and integrations to make the system as easy as possible to use with very little training, yet retain the enormous configurability of the standard SuiteCRM product.

An additional feature that is hugely beneficial for customers is the ability for customers to have the integration between their Webrecs document management system (that leverages and builds upon the Alfresco open-source technology) with their Webrecs customer relationship management system (that leverages and builds upon the SuiteCRM open-source technology). This introductory tour hopes to give you a taste of what is immediately there to use, as well as pointing out some avenues for further exploration.

SuiteCRM and Dashboard

Clock - Time for this section 15 mins

Login and profile

First, login to the SuiteCRM interface of your subscription using the link provided in your welcome email - this will be something like

https://<my business name>


<my business name> is the domain name you have chosen for your subscription and will be in your Welcome email

We strongly recommend the use of Google Chrome as the browser, although Firefox, IE and Safari are also supported.

Use the admin user (who has full control over your entire system )and the password supplied in your welcome email, typically named "admin" (for Webrecs VPCloud subscriptions ) or "admin@<my business name>" eg. admin@acme (for Webrecs Cloud Subscriptions)

CRM login

You should be presented with a dashboard similar to that below (but of course without the blue arrows and explanatory comments )

CRM dashboard

It is a good idea to set up your profile and change your password immediately. Click on the Administrator link (top right) to get into the place where you can edit your user profile. There will be a drop-down menu but we ignore that for now. You will see that you can edit your User Profile, Employee Information and Email Settings at the default page. There are tabs at the top where you can click on Password to change your password as well. For now, you can change your user name if you wish, email settings and also your password so that the system has your latest information. The most important thing is to change your email address to that which you can access since the system sends notifications to this address. NB: Don't forget to click "Save" at the bottom of the screen. Finally change your password by clicking on the "Password" tab and entering the old password followed by the new password twice. You can also change the theme from "Classic" to "Metro" if you wish to have a different user theme for your entire system. The External Accounts allow you to connect and view your documents within your Webrecs Document Management System from your CRM system, which is the unique integration offered by Webrecs to all customers. We will touch on how to set that up in a later section called "Working with documents".

Save all your updates and return to your dashboard by clicking on "Home" at the top left corner.

Edit Profile

Configure dashboard

Configure dashboard

Let's now go and configure our dashboard by adding another dashlet. Click on the "Add Dashlets" link after clicking back to the main dashboard through the "Home" link on the top bar. In the ensuing pop-up window, you will see that there are different types of dashlets that you can add to the main dashboard. Whenever you click on any dashlet, you will see that dashlet being automatically added in the main dashboard below the pop-up window.

There are 4 types of dashlets, namely Modules, Charts, Tools and Web. Modules are standard dashlets that allow you to manage all your customer leads and accounts easily, as well as track them across calendars and other types of modules. Charts are dashlets containing graphs and charts which are generated from the data that you have keyed into your modules, allowing you to view a visual snapshot of how your business is doing in terms of revenue and what sources of that are. The tools are some additional tools that can be used such as news and activity feed, while the web dashlet allows you to add dashlets that point to any website that you want loaded automatically within that dashlet when you visit the CRM system.

Among useful dashlets are "My Accounts", "My Open Tasks", "My Notes", "My Top Open Opportunities" in the Modules section and the "Website" dashlet in the Web section. For the sake of this tour, make sure that the mentioned dashlets on your dashboard by clicking on them. Each dashlet can be separately configured. You can also remove any dashlet from the dashboard by clicking on the X icon at the extreme right of the dashlet menu bar. Editing the dashlet by clicking on the edit pencil icon, while refreshing the dashlet to load new changes will be the icon with the 2 arrows in a circle. Just take note that removing dashlets does not mean that you are removing the saved data within it, you are just removing the view of the targeted data.

Editing dashlet

Let's now configure the Web dashlet. Click on "Add Dashlets" again and then the "Web" tab. You will see "Website", where you can add your favourite site (share trading, news, sport, whatever ) into the URL. Click on "Add" after typing the URL and hey presto, you have a mini web view on your dashboard - you can click on the edit pencil at any time to change the details of the web dashlet, such as the default title which draws from the title of the original website. In the sample below, we are using the E-trade share trading platform by adding as the site we like.

Web View

If you have the time, you can check out many of the other standard dashlets to populate your dashboard. Some of the dashlets allow you to use Google Maps to strategise your client acquisition plans, such as "Maps Listing", "My Areas" and "My Markers". You can also do all kinds of things with other dashlets, just add them onto your dashboard and play with them to find out how they work. In the meantime, we will focus on the dashlets that will get your customer relationship management up and running quickly first.

Working with your customers

Clock - Time for this section 20 mins

Before you can start utilising fully the Webrecs CRM system, you will need to have some other users which you can assign leads and contacts to.

Adding Users

Start off by creating some other users for your CRM system. You will have the ability to create unlimited number of users with different levels of access permission based on their roles. Go into the Admin page under the top right drop-down menu for your Administrator link, and then click on "User Management". Click that and then create some users, who may be some of the employees within your company.

Admin Page

Make sure that their User Type is "Regular User" rather than "System Administrator User", as you will not want them to have access to all the system's controls.

Create New User

Also make sure that their emails are correctly input, as an email will be sent out to them once their user accounts have been created. They will be sent the initial user names and passwords which they can change by logging in, just like what you did earlier. Remember to click "Save" at the bottom to save these data that you have created.

New User Email

Accounts, Leads and Contacts

Once you are done with creating some users, you can create some accounts, contacts and leads. Start off by selecting the dropdown menu from Accounts, Contacts and Leads and create some accounts, contacts and leads. You do not need full information to get started, this is just for you to get a better understanding of how the CRM system works so you can begin with some fake accounts first. Alternatively, you can also use real client data.

Create Client Accounts, Contacts, Leads

When you are creating your contacts and leads, you will need to assign these contacts and leads to either yourself or any of the other users that you have created earlier.

Assign Users

Once you have done all these, add the dashlets for "My Accounts", "My Leads" and "My Contacts" when you are on your main dashboard. You will be able to see the leads and contacts that you have assigned to yourself in these dashlets. Leads and contacts that you have assigned to other users will appear on their dashlets in their dashboards, not yours.

Dashboard Accounts/Leads/Contacts

Creating Calls and Meetings in Calendar

You are going to be creating calls and meetings in your calendar next. When you hover your mouse over "Calendar" in the top menu bar, you will be able to see "Schedule Meeting" and "Schedule Call" as 2 of the options. Instead of clicking on these to schedule the required task, you can do it more quickly by clicking on any section of the calendar after clicking on "Calendar" itself, it will bring up a window where you can choose between 2 options of "Schedule Meeting" or "Log Call".

Creating Calendar Tasks

When you are done with creating these tasks for scheduling meetings or logging calls, you can add the "My Calendar" dashlet to your dashboard and you will be able to see all your meetings and calls directly from there. Blue coloured tasks are meetings, and red coloured tasks are calls.

Calendar Tasks

Take note that you have the ability to make these calls and meetings recurring as well, under the "Recurrence" tab when you are creating the calendar task. You can also invite other users, contacts or leads to join these calls or meetings.

Invite others and recurring meetings/calls

In addition, if you add the dashlets for "My Calls" and "My Meetings" to your dashboard, you will be able to see them in these dashlets besides the calendar.

Calendar, Calls and Meetings Dashlets on Dashboard

Creating Opportunities

Next up is creating opportunities, which are potential deals that will bring revenue to your business. This is different from accounts, which are existing customers that you already have and are maintaining. You can assign these opportunities to accounts that you are managing, and also specify the stage at which it is, and the probability of closing the opportunity. Creating opportunities are very good for visualisation of future business opportunities, which we will investigate further below at the "Working with charts and graphs section".

Creating an Opportunity

Working with your documents from within the CRM system

Clock - Time for this section 20 mins

Although there is a dashlet provided by the CRM system which allows you to upload your documents into the dashlet, but since you already have a fully functioning Webrecs Document System, you do not need to add that dashlet for your CRM system. Instead, you can store all your documents within your Webrecs Share Document Management System, and use our integration to link accounts to relevant documents within your Document Management System.

To do that, you have to first set up your integration within the "External Accounts" settings. Click on the Administrator link to get to the settings page where you can edit your User Profile and Password. Click on the "External Accounts" tab and click on "Create" under all the tabs to create the external account which will link to the Webrecs Document Management System.

Create External Account

Do take note that to see the integration well, you will need to have documents uploaded into your document repository in your Document Management System. If you have not done so, upload some documents there so that you will be able to this integration take effect.

Setting up and Connecting

Now that you are in the created external account page, you can connect by keying in your username and password for your Share account (your Webrecs Document Management System) after selecting WebrecsDocs under the dropdown menu. For the URL, key in the URL of the Share login page.

Setting up External Account

Once you are done with all these, click "Connect" button and your CRM system will be linked to your Share account's document repository. To check whether this works, you can create a customer account and when you click on any of these accounts, you will be able to see this WebrecsDocs section in it. You will be able to filter according to the dropdown menu based on which folder you want to filter towards.

Viewing documents

Inside any of your client account, you will see a new section called "WebrecsDocs". You can filter by document type and subtype directly from your CRM system, and you can also go directly to the Document Management System by clicking on the Webrecs logo at "Access this folder directly in.."


IMPORTANT: Do take note that the link between Account / Contact in the CRM system and the Webrecs Document Management System is through the entity id (Client ID , Fund ID or Site ID ) and the custom field "id_code_c" - "Webrecs Entity ID". Also, when there is creation of a new entity in the Webrecs Document Management System, it can automatically create the new customer "Account" in your CRM system if connected properly through these external accounts setup.

Working with charts and graphs

Clock - Time for this section 20 mins

Now we are going to look at the different charts that we can generate by adding dashlets from the Charts section. Click on "Add Dashlets" on the top right side of the web interface, click on "Charts" as shown in the image below and you will be able to see different chart dashlets that you can add to your dashboard. The charts track all the opportunities and sales pipeline held by all users within the company across the board, so it gives you a bird's eye view of how the company is doing overall in terms of growth. We are going to take a look at some of the interesting charts that we can generate from opportunities that have been driven by some users. Try creating an opportunity and see how these charts will change accordingly.

Adding Dashlets

The first one that we see below is a chart that shows all opportunities by lead source. This chart shows where the best opportunities lie with reference to their lead sources, so that you know where to focus your efforts in generating new opportunities for business. Why spend marketing on an area which does not generate as much opportunities as another?

Chart 1

The next chart below shows the opportunities with reference to their lead source and outcome. Some opportunities may be easy to grasp but harder to close. This chart will enable you to see the stage of negotiation for each opportunity, as well as weigh the timeline and efforts needed to close the opportunity in relation to their lead sources.

Chart 2

The next chart below then shows the outcome by month, so that everyone will know exactly what opportunities have been closed in that particular month.

Chart 3

Next we look at using the map markers and areas. Map markers and areas are mapping tools that you use when you want to strategise where to target new placements of offices, or even target specific areas or communities for customer acquisition. You can also use these mapping tools to specify which areas to research on for your customer demographics. The map markers and areas dashlets have been preloaded for you, so now all you need to do is add content to them as they are empty dashlets now. First, we hover our mouse over the top menu bar "All", and then click on "Map Markers".

Menu Dropdown

You will be able to see all the map markers that have been created, so click on "Create" on the top right corner to create a new map marker assigned to you.

Map Markers

Name the map marker whatever you want, and move the marker on the map below to wherever you want to point the map marker to. After you are done, click "Save" and this map marker will appear in the "Map Markers" dashlet on your main dashboard.

Create Map Marker

Now we have a map marker at the specific location that we want to pinpoint on the world map.

Create Map Marker

Next we look at map areas. Map areas are different from map markers in the sense that they are used to specify areas that you want to focus/target, rather than just one point in the map. Click on "Map Areas" on the "All" dropdown menu and then click "Create" to create a new map area.

Create Map Areas

From the create box, you are able to click on the map using your left mouse button. Just click once without moving, the first point of the area will be lodged, and from there you can click a few more points to make the area until you click back onto the first point to finish allocating the area on the map.

Assigning a Map Area

Save the information and click back to main dashboard to see what it looks like. Here we will be able to see both the map marker and area we have created on the main dashboard in their respective dashlets. Congratulations!

Completed Map Area

Wrap-up and more tour ideas

Sadly that concludes our tour.

Here are some more tour ideas, and of course the Webrecs Wiki is a treasure trove of information for those hungry for more details.

Handling paperless accounts with Webrecs and Xero

Managing projects with Webrecs

Running a SMSF practice with Webrecs

Running a Financial practice with Webrecs

Hopefully you have discovered enough to allow you to understand how the Webrecs system can work for your business, whether you be a

  • Financial or taxation practice
  • Web or creative agency
  • Software development shop
  • NGO / Not for profit organisation
  • Sole proprietor
  • Small/Medium Enterprise
  • Startup

If you want to

  • share documents with third parties
  • require access from anywhere

you might consider a Cloud-based document-sharing system of which Webrecs is one (of course there are many others for example - Google docs, Dropbox, Alfresco cloud ) - and frankly if that's where it ends


Webrecs might be overkill for you


If you feel you would like to

  • move towards an integrated paperless office
  • be able to manage both your company and your client's documents


Webrecs becomes interesting


If you need to

  • manage projects with multiple distributed parties (with versioning, access control, wikis, blogs, user management etc. )


Webrecs becomes exciting


If you would like the security of

  • nightly backups (and the ability to get them restored)
  • ability to upgrade to more disk/CPU/memory
  • local support
  • local hosting
  • the ability to customise beyond the cosmetic


Webrecs becomes compelling


If you want to improve your efficiency with

  • a preconfigured system for your business type
  • integrated accounting and other LOB systems with single sign-on
  • identical storage and handling of ALL documents (whether mail, scanned or office)
  • searchable, easily added scanned documents
  • secure, fine-grained user management for customers, staff and project members


Webrecs becomes inevitable


And if your requirements include

  • Relocatable User Backups
  • explorer mounted drives
  • deep customisation including unlimited alfresco customisation, mail-servers, timesheet systems, bug-tracking, wikis, CRM systems in your own cloud container


Webrecs becomes essential

Thanks for your time, hope to see you again soon.

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