With Proper Configuration and Training, Salesforce Absolutely Does Work for Private Equity
Salesforce was recently named the #1 CRM for the sixth year in a row. This distinction is high praise for the company that absolutely dominates the market. But reasonably, it remains questionable regarding the challenges using Salesforce for private equity.
It’s true there are significant pain points for private equity firms that are trying to work within the Salesforce “mold”. But these “pains” can be overcome by partnering with a team with the technology to make this best-in-class CRM work for private equity firms.
Common Misconceptions About Salesforce for Private Equity
The first misconception about Salesforce is that it’s too unwieldy and complicated to be effective. This is a misconception that spans all industries, and private equity is no exception.
The issue that most firms run into with Salesforce is improper implementation and training. Any new tool you implement in your organization needs to be managed properly. Taking the time to sit down with key stakeholders to assess needs and map out key goals, milestones, and project owners will significantly increase the success of the new technology. It is also a good idea to hire an employee or an outside consultant with expertise in that technology to help with the implementation and customization. [Read why you need an executive sponsor for fund software implementation here.]
While it may seem like Salesforce competitors make technology implementation easier—or even “turn-key”—the reality is that they all need implementation support. We’ve all heard the saying, and this is no different, you get what you pay for. More often than not, a company will start with a more “simple” solution, then quickly realize that it does not work once the firm grows, which they then have to go back to the drawing board for a new solution.
Salesforce is perceived as being over-complicated because it is highly customizable and scalable for any organization, no matter the size or industry. But most of the time it doesn’t fit perfectly “out of the box”. [Read further on the problems around Salesforce out of the box here.]
This is where the second common misperception comes in. Many organizations purchase Salesforce and expect it to be implemented “automagically”. This simply is not the case. In our experience, people purchase Salesforce because it was recommended to them by a friend or colleague. But the decision-maker usually isn’t going to be the person or part of the team of people implementing it. So, they tend to have an overly simplistic view of what it is going to take to make the tool work for their organization. This dynamic is acute in the private equity industry, where CRM and reporting needs are very unique compared to other organizations.
Challenges of Using Salesforce for Private Equity
It’s true that Salesforce simply was not built specifically for private equity, and many private equity firms have come to believe that this makes it a poor tool for their needs.
Simple examples of this are the Account/Company and Contact record types that are core to the sales and reporting process in Salesforce. For years, private equity firms have struggled to fit their fundraising and investor relations processes into this mold. The result has been frustration, inefficiency, and wasted budget. Private equity managers need a solution that is tailored to their unique processes of fundraising, capital management, due diligence, and more. Salesforce out of the box simply does not provide this structure, leading to deepening frustration from their PE customers.
Additionally, the support team at Salesforce does not understand the private equity industry. So, when someone needs help building a report and pulling data, the support team is ill-equipped to help them. Initial and ongoing training from Salesforce are not clearly beneficial to admins working for private equity firms either, because they are tailored toward more “traditional” company sales and customer success processes.
Bridging Salesforce for Private Equity with Altvia
Kevin Kelly, the Founder and CEO of Altvia, experienced all of these misconceptions and challenges himself. And the team at Altvia witnesses them every day in the conversations we have with prospects and clients. We built our product using Salesforce as the foundation of our CRM for PE product because it is the best CRM available on the market. But, we knew it could be better for our private equity brethren. [Read more about we got our start in private equity here.]
Altvia’s CRM, AIM, doesn’t force you to try to fit into the Salesforce mold. We’ve developed proprietary record types, reports, dashboards and more that makes Salesforce work for you. AIM provides 360-visibility by connecting accounts and contacts to deals, funds, and investor records. It manages the capital raising process from start to finish, providing 100% clarity on the prospects you’re working with and those you’ve received commitments from. Using AIM, you can follow real-time fundraising progress, and automatically generate, distribute and track PPMs.
But Altvia doesn’t just sell you a product and move on to the next sale. Our implementation and support team is second to none. Our support team exists to help our clients properly implement and customize AIM, and build dashboards and reports that are crucial to their own business processes. The team knows our products, Salesforce, and the private equity industry inside and out. We speak your language. So, when you call us saying you need to print your PPMs we know exactly what you’re looking to accomplish!
Find out how Altvia’s CRM can help your firm grow by scheduling a demo today.