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Author : Nicole van Zanten

What not to look for in an IT Consultant Zoho ZBrains

What Not To Look For In An IT Consultant

Hiring an IT consultant, whether for a short-term project or a year-long contract, can be an overwhelming experience. You place so much trust in a consultant to work on critical tasks, the configuration of your software, and more – ultimately, the foundation of your business. While you know what you should look for, have you ever thought about what you shouldn’t look for?

At ZBrains, we’ve partnered with businesses to help understand and enhance efficiencies within companies, so we’ve truly seen it all – including what not to do.

Here are 5 things not to look for in an IT consultant.

1. You shouldn’t hire a consultant who won’t train your staff.

If an IT consultant comes in to assist with your business process or software implementation, they need to train your staff in the process. If a consultant is not open to training your staff, it is a clear indication that you should stay far away. A consultant typically has an end term or a contract. If your staff is not trained on the projects or software that the consultant is implementing, your employees will be unsure of how to move forward once the contract is over and the consultant is gone.

2. You shouldn’t hire a consultant who is wary of confidentiality agreements.

Confidentiality agreements and nondisclosure agreements will help you sleep better at night – plain and simple. They ensure that your business strategies, customer information, and any other sensitive business information remain secret. With access to sensitive information within the IT sphere of your business, it’s important to have a complete and total understanding of confidentiality with your consultant. Ensure your chosen consultant signs on the dotted line.

3. You shouldn’t hire the most inexpensive consultant on the market.

With adequate knowledge and experience comes a financial investment that you can depend on. Focus on hiring a consultant who has experience within your particular industry and environment. He or she should be able to navigate the complex areas of IT and truly understand what you – and your clients – need. Being attuned to you and your business’s needs will heighten your chances of success when working with a consultant. Be prepared to seek expertise and experience, not always price.

4. You shouldn’t hire a consultant who is stuck in their ways.

Everyone has different ways on how to do their job – whether it be their process or their approach. Yet, innovation and ambition are key, and you should certainly search for a consultant who can deliver both of these attributes. A plethora of experience combined with an individual who will truly go above and beyond what is required of them will be a perfect match for your business.

5. You shouldn’t hire a consultant who has not yet worked within your industry.

The promise of research and adaptability might sound positive, but be careful – a consultant who has yet to work within your industry should be a red flag. They may not be familiar with all of the nuances and common challenges within your industry. Whether you are a marketing firm or a B2C retail business, experience within your existing software and industry is integral to success.

When it comes to hiring an IT consultant, there are plenty of qualities and characteristics to look for. With these 5 tips and recommendations, you will be set to embark on your next search for an IT consultant for your business.

At ZBrains, our Zoho consulting focuses on expertise, impact, and efficiency. Combined with our training services, Zoho deployment, and integrations we are adaptable to your business’s needs. To learn more about how you can get your business operating at its full potential, drop us a line and schedule a time to talk with a chat with a member of our ZBrains team today!

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Guy in a nice jacket looking at his Zoho Reports son his mobile phone

Zoho Reports for iPhone and Android – Finally!

Accessing information on your smartphone is integral to your career success. Think about how much you would miss if you couldn’t respond to email through your iPhone, check sales forecasting through your Android, or take that important phone call from your car? The number of mobile phone users in the world is predicted to pass five billion by the year 2019, which means businesses are increasingly building new apps and integrations for smartphones.

That’s why Zoho Reports is now giving you access to read and review on your iPhone and Android!

“Shut the front door!” you’re saying – and we’re serious. Zoho Reports on mobile is finally here.

Zoho Reports on mobile devices

Here are 5 reasons why we’re so excited Zoho Reports has arrived for iPhone and Android.

1. Because you are no longer restricted by time and place.

Have you been asked, “Hey Joe – how did that email campaign perform against my prospect list?” and you’ve had to respond with, “Oh hey Laura – I’ll get back to you in an hour when I’m at my desk”?

Say goodbye to time and place restrictions. Now, you’ll know how your campaigns performed, who it performed well against, and what you can do to optimize next time- all from your phone!

2. You can collaborate with your colleagues on mobile.

This functionality performs exactly the same way as reports on desktop. You and your colleagues can collaborate and work on reports together, in synchrony, even on mobile. View data, share data, and update your filter on-the-fly.

3. Safety and security remain paramount.

Just because Zoho is bringing reports to a new platform doesn’t mean they’re skimping on safety and security. In fact, it’s the complete opposite. Two-factor authentication for your account is still an option – when downloading the app for the first time, you will have to verify your account through your registered mobile phone number.

4. Favorites make it easier than ever.

Use certain reports more frequently than others? You can favorite your frequently used databases, which will then be listed in the Favorites tab in your home page. With a simple tap of the app and click on the Favorites tab, you will have access to the reports you need quickly and efficiently.

5. Edit and share easier than ever.

Of course, it’s great to have the ability to view a report on your mobile – but what about editing and sharing?

Yes – Zoho Reports for iPhone and Android can do that, too.

Within the app, you can collaborate with colleagues and clients to edit various data points, then share with the email address of specific users. Make changes on-the-fly and share them on-the-go.

We couldn’t be more excited to witness the unveiling of Zoho Reports on iPhone and Android, and we know you will be, too. To learn more about this latest app, click here or schedule a consultation with our ZBrains team today!

 

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An Owl surprised at hot easy migrating to zoho is

Why Migrating to Zoho is Easier Than You Thought

Some CRMs simply don’t live up to expectations – that’s a fact. Many of our clients come to us with the frustration of, “X isn’t doing what I want – so we need another solution”, and we help introduce them to the solution they need (*cough* Zoho). If you have made the decision that your current CRM isn’t working for you, you might wonder whether migrating to Zoho is worth all of the pain and effort. Well, we’re here to tell you that migrating to Zoho is way easier than you thought!

In this blog, we will walk you through the three major areas of migration that will set your CRM up for success, so you’ll get over that hump and get Zoho ready quickly and efficiently.

How Zoho Can Help You

Data, Email, and Inventory – Why Migrating To Zoho Is Easier Than You Thought

Existing CRM Data

One major worry for most sales and marketing teams is data – when migrating over to another CRM, what happens to your data? Until everything is loaded into your new program, many of us would be sweating bullets.

Not with Zoho. Migrating data from your existing CRM to Zoho is simple. Zoho has a great step-by-step guide here to migrate data, giving you everything you need to bring your information over with ease. Within Zoho, you can map modules like users, leads, and accounts to vendors, quotes, and products. The existing fields you have in your current CRM will transfer over. Zoho’s de-duplication process also help to avoid bad data.

Email

For email accounts and data, migrating to Zoho is also a simple process. Migration can be done with many different types of files – if your current CRM is providing EML or ZIP files, these can be uploaded to Zoho Mail. You can also use the Migration Wizard to migrate emails to accounts within Zoho Mail.

Zoho Mail is a webmail interface, just like Outlook or Gmail. It helps keep all of your contact synced with the Zoho CRM, Campaigns, Inventory and more.

Inventory

If your business relies on the tracking of physical inventory, we are sure you will be pleased to know that Zoho offers incredible inventory tracking – and can migrate all of your current data to Zoho. Avoid double entries and safe time by migrating everything over – even if it’s on an excel sheet.

With inventory migration, you can transfer modules such as contacts, items, sales orders, invoices, bills and more. Zoho offers a great cheat sheet on how to prepare and import your files here.

We are proud of how easy it is to migrate your data to Zoho. Regardless of the CRM you are using now – Salesforce, Pipedrive, Highrise and more – we can transfer your data, email, inventory and more into Zoho. Also, with the several integrations and add-ons available, you can customize it to fit your business.

If you are ready to learn more about how you can make the switch to Zoho, our team is ready to help you along every step of the way. Schedule a consultation with one of our Zoho certified consultants, to learn more.

 

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Woman sitting at her desk reading about common crm issues and zoho solutions

3 Common CRM Issues and Their Solutions

When new clients come to us at ZBrains, we often hear one of two things – either they have faced significant challenges with a previous CRM software they have used and they’re ready to move on, or they have just signed with Zoho and are unsure where to start. With these two challenges, you could say that we’ve heard it all – from A to Z; so, you can be sure that we have answers to your common CRM issues.

After thousands of conversations with various clients, we’ve wrangled our experts at ZBrains to tell us their top 3 most common CRM issues from new clients. If you’re brand new to CRM management or perhaps you have questions about your current CRM, we’re sure you’ll identify with one (or more) of the challenges below.

Here are the top 3 common CRM issues (and their solutions).

Business woman on phone looking at Zoho mobile applicationChallenge: I can’t access my CRM on-the-go.

Imagine you want to access a client contact history while en route to a meeting, or away from your desk – but you can’t access your CRM through your phone. Ugh.

Solution: Discover a CRM that works on-the-go.

Challenge: My team does not know how to use my CRM properly.

Whether it’s because of lack of process or lack of training, your team just doesn’t understand or know how to use the major features of your CRM, it can be difficult to get your employees on-board entirely with your CRM.

Solution: Educate, Track, Customize.

Save time by tracking everything- from emails to phone calls, and meeting logs in between. Zoho has it all – enabling your team to make the most of your CRM. Have a program that educates your team on the benefits and use-cases before diving in head first. In our experience, this has truly made a difference in overall adoption and usage. Develop a solid process for your team and have customizable solutions for your business processes. Get started on the right foot by signing up for one of our Zoho implementation plans.

Challenge: My CRM doesn’t integrate with the software I use every day.

Are you always flipping through tabs, browsers, applications and spending far too much time logging-in, or recovering lost passwords?Is it just another application that you need to manage?

Solution: Find an all-in-one solution.zoho one

This is especially true for sales and marketing teams, who certainly use many, many applications on a daily basis. From CRM to email, social media posting applications and more, it can be a challenge to keep track of it all. Zoho One has 35+ integrated applications that encompass everything from CRM, email newsletters, documents, inventory, and more. Here at ZBrains, we offer additional add-ons and custom integrations for your favorite business products, such as QuickBooks,  Magento, and more.

It’s important to find a CRM that can integrate with a variety of solutions to optimize the potential of your business. It will keep you on-track and ready to close more, win more, and earn more.

From employees using your CRM (properly) to finding software that works for all teams in your company, these are our top 4 common CRM issues and their solutions. They’ve been compiled by our Zoho certified consultants here at ZBrains who are here to help you with your burning questions.  Feel free to drop us a line!

 

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Sortware as utility no longer a commodity

Software as a Utility vs a Commodity

Information technology and developed software are growing and innovating at remarkable rates. IT jobs, in particular, are expected to grow by 20% through the year 2020; it’s no surprise that this is faster than average. So, as we look at software in particular, the question to ask ourselves is – do we consider it to be a utility, or a commodity?

What is software as a utility?

The definition of a utility is the state of being useful, profitable or beneficial. In relation to technology, software can be positioned as something that holds immense value. It is technology that provides revenue and shows a true source of ROI for businesses and brands. It is a software that can manage a plethora of business applications under one system.

What is software as a commodity?

Traditionally, software has been considered to be a commodity. As a refresher, the term “commodity” refers to a basic good used in commerce that is interchangeable with other commodities of the same type. Consider the way in which many software vendors have approached you, a decision maker. You receive hundreds of pitches per year – perhaps even per month – mostly landing in your inbox. The sales person on the other end is treating their product as a commodity, as an economic exchange.

Which would you rather – the software you select to be used as a utility, or as a commodity?Zoho one Software

When it comes to Zoho One, we know that it is shifting away from the traditional perception of software as a commodity. Zoho One is a true example of a utility – a useful, profitable and beneficial product that provides unmatched ROI for your business. Here’s why…

Zoho One is affordable.

Unlike the commodity of economic exchange – those darn cold emails that are floating in your inbox right now – Zoho One is truly affordable per user. Software is traditionally expensive, which is why the thought of it as a commodity has often been true. Instead, Zoho One starts at $45 per employee, per month.* The price point positions this software as one that lends itself remarkably well to profitability. *Pricing updated June 2021

It increases efficiency – and efficiency means additional revenue.

The beauty of Zoho One is that you can manage a multitude of business applications under one system. This means no more flipping through tabs, browsers, applications and spending far too much time logging-in, or recovering lost passwords. Saved time means increased efficiency – and increased efficiency means additional revenue. It means that your team can spend more time doing their job instead of performing administrative tasks each and every day.

It can run your entire business in one suite.

zoho one software screenIf you haven’t checked out Zoho One, now is the time – because we’re sure you’re going to love that this software can run your entire business through one suite. Seriously.

With one administrative log-in, you can work through over 35 applications, including your CRM, email newsletters, documents, inventory checks and more. Your team can send emails to your prospects, engage with your clients, and check to see which of your prospects are checking out your website. This is all through one software with a variety of applications.

It was once thought that software was a commodity exclusively, mostly because of the steep price tag that many companies have set. Instead, with the introduction of Zoho to the market, the mindset has truly shifted to that of software as a utility; a solution that generates revenue through increased efficiency, and truly proved profit and benefit.

We know you’ll love Zoho One, and we’re confident you’ll realize just how much of an impact it will have on your business. We here at ZBrains are Zoho Certified Consultants, as well as a Zoho developers with a handful of powerful Zoho integration tools. To learn more about how Zoho One can work for you, connect with us!

 

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Zoho One What and Why Business woman speaking on phone

Zoho One – What And Why

If you could manage a plethora of business applications under one software system, you would, wouldn’t you? (The answer is yes – of course you would). Instead of flipping through various tabs, opening multiple browsers, and downloading too many applications that you’ve now lost count of, the solution is to find just that – a solution. A solution that can increase your efficiency in all facets of your business practices. That solution is Zoho One.

What is Zoho One?

It’s is a truly revolutionary suite that can run your entire business – seriously. It has 40+ integrated applications that encompasses everything like CRM, email newsletters, documents, inventory, and more. You simply need a username and password, integrate your applications, and you’re set; one dashboard to rule all.

Zoho One includes apps like:

  1. CRM
  2. Desk
  3. Zoho Projects
  4. Zoho Finance Suite (including Books, Inventory, Expense, and Subscriptions)
  5. SalesIQ
  6. Zoho Marketing Automation
  7. Campaigns
  8. And over 30+ others.  The list grows nearly every day.

This exceptional software suite can be used across all areas of your business, from sales and marketing to customer support and accounting. This means that everyone can log-in, everyone can use various applications that suit business needs in order to go about daily tasks. zoho one implementation

Here’s why we love Zoho One – and why you will, too.

It provides unmatched security across your business.

Zoho One gives account administrators one secure account for applications and overall control. This means that you’ll have one account to access all of your programs – such as the CRM, email, and more. Gone are the days of different login credentials for each individual program – which increases the potential of lost or stolen passwords.

In addition, this one Zoho suite gives owners and managers complete control over business data. Only these individuals can access programs containing sensitive data, ensuring the information stays in the right hands.

Zoho won’t stop here.

45+ applications in the suite already sounds impressive – and it is. Yet, Zoho is always focused on innovation and improvement, which means that they won’t stop at 45.

The developer ecosystem ensures this application suite is enhanced regularly. This means that technology partners can truly customize applications to meet their needs. So, if an application that is customized to your business needs to be included within a certain means of framework, Zoho One provides developers with the ability to make this happen.  That goes for everything from workflow rules in the CRM, custom functions in Zoho Books, or even an entirely new Zoho ERP app developed on Zoho Creator.

Zoho One pricing

Pricing starts at $45 per employee, per month (or $37 per employee, per month*, when paid on an annual basis). This includes all integrated business apps (everything you need), mobile and native apps, centralized administrative control, and more. *Prices updated June 2021

Consider the ROI for this solution. How much time would it take one employee to move between tabs, including logging-in and waiting for each application or associated software to start? 10 minutes? 20 minutes? Now, consider your billed or internally-set hourly rate. How much time can be saved by consolidating your business applications? Is this worth $45 per month? (We’ll say yes).

Zoho One Implementation

Now that you know the key features of the one Zoho suite, you’re probably asking: What does it mean to actually implement an entire suite of business software?  Do all the apps turn on at once?  What about permissions?  What do I do to prepare?

zoho one implementation

Taking the first steps

First of all, as soon as you know your organization is going to implement the suite of apps, I would do a quick poll and see who, if anyone, has implemented a Zoho app on their own.  This is not because you want them to spearhead the deployment process for your company!  Rather, it’s to make sure you don’t have any issues when adding all of your employees to your organization. It can be a bit of a chore to add people who are already recognized as Zoho app administrators to your org.

Has anyone has gone rogue and deployed their own app, be it  CRM, Campaigns, or People? If so, kindly have them switch their email from their company email to a personal email address. (Conversely, if your employee is using their Zoho app to conduct actual company business, that can make things a little more complicated. Contact us for some help!)

Getting Apps Configured

Second of all, don’t fear! Turning on Zoho One does not mean your employees can suddenly run amok and access all the different apps in Zoho; in fact, they give you great control over what your staff can and cannot do once you begin implementing the suite.  Here’s what we can tell you:

  1. Firstly, the apps you’ve already activated in your existing Zoho organization will come pre-selected when you arrive at the main implementation screen
  2. You can configure exactly which additional apps your employees can access
  3. However, even if you don’t activate certain Zoho apps during the initial configuration, you can always come back and turn the other apps on when needed
  4. Finally, your company’s settings, records, and other work stored in the a la carte Zoho apps will not be disturbed when you switch from the a la carte apps to the bundled option

Selecting the Right Licensing

Lastly – and this is more of a caveat – remember that all of your W-2 employees need to be members of your organization, per the Zoho One licensing agreement.  (They say you can buy “flexible user pricing” if you really don’t want to have all your employees as org members, but this is $105/user/mo.)

zoho one implementation

Having Zoho One Licensing Issues?

We’ve heard from quite a few company reps who love the idea of a software suite like this, but don’t want to have to buy licenses for all their W-2 employees – because maybe half or more of their employees don’t ever touch computers for their jobs!  This is especially common with people who use Zoho for manufacturing, or Zoho for field services and construction.

Now, we know what you’re thinking.

You may be tempted to… have employees share logins, or…

Just not buy licenses for all your employees.

Well, please take this word of advice: Don’t go that route.

Zoho reserves the right to audit your books if you use Zoho One, and they have the right to impose penalties on you (likely monetary ones) if you don’t comply with their licensing agreement.  Instead, just contact ZBrains and we may be able to help you out.

Thank you for stopping by, as always.  If you have any questions or comments, connect with us any time, and explore some of our expert consulting options.

 

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A guy, sitting at his computer, reading about the Zoho Campaigns and Zoho CRM Intergration

The Power Of Zoho Campaigns and CRM Integration

The evolution of marketing and business development has grown leaps and bounds over the last few years. As software has offered increasingly more features and benefits, the days of disconnected CRM software and email management systems are over. You can now have information, data, and reporting at your fingertips through multi-platform accessibility. Zoho Campaigns, for one, has not only grown with the evolution – it has led the way in terms of features and functionality. From creating emails with beautiful customizable templates to tracking and reporting what content your prospects are engaging,

Zoho Campaigns allows you massive insights into your email marketing campaigns. Best of all, the integration with Zoho CRM offers unparalleled visibility into those engaged with your content and pipeline.

Here are 4 reasons why you’ll love the power of Zoho Campaigns and CRM integration

1. Reach out to your leads, prospects, and customers with ease.

With Zoho Campaigns and Zoho CRM integration, you can track engagement and email exchanges all-in-one. Your entire marketing team can use Campaigns to send email messaging through a multi-user account, which means that visibility into all activities is second-to-none.

Efficiency is key when it comes to this integration. If you have customer lists in Zoho CRM (of course you do!) you can see these campaign results within each prospect record – so the next time you’re on a sales call, you won’t need to switch between multiple applications to find answers to your prospect’s questions. Everything is in one record through your CRM.

Zoho Campaigns

2. You’ll know how well your campaigns performed against your sales contact list.

When deciding who to actively prospect and who to set aside, for now, the data and subsequent decisions will be right before your eyes. Email marketing provides a detailed look into who’s interested – and who isn’t. After all, for every $1 spent, email marketing generates $38 in ROI. Now that’s impressive.

Within Zoho Campaigns, you can also customize your lists to reach the right audience. You can segment your lists based on specific criteria, such as business type. This makes custom, targeted engagement a very simple task.

3. Your data will always be up-to-date.

The advanced sync between Zoho CRM and Zoho Campaigns allows users – you – to maintain up-to-date versions of contact and lead information. When a prospect engages, this data will pull into your CRM. When a prospect opts-out, they will be automatically unsubscribed from your mailing list and you will receive a notification. You won’t be working with old data, meaning quality will be assured every single time.

4. Your sales staff won’t need to toggle between various software.

Your sales staff have other, more important tasks to worry about – like closing deals. That’s why they won’t spend time toggling between various pieces of software. They won’t need to pull open your CRM alongside your email marketing software while trying to make sense of the data. Instead, Zoho Campaigns gives your sales team one unified platform to monitor and provide all of the information in one place, making them more efficient – and closing more deals – in the meantime.

We love the integration between Zoho Campaigns and Zoho CRM – and we are sure you will, too. To learn more about how this will work for your business you can contact us. Or you can enable your team today by signing up for a private Zoho CRM training support session!  Lastly, for even more great, integrated marketing features, we strongly recommend checking out Zoho Marketing Automation, the latest marketing funnel management app from Zoho.

love zoho CRM

Why Baby Boomers are leaving their legacy systems behind (and why they love Zoho CRM!)

baby boomers zoho crm

When it comes to software for your business, the opportunities are endless – from CRM to ERP, accounting software to marketing automation, you’re likely receiving cold calls and email outreach every single day. Yet, when it comes to baby boomers, there is a shift happening – a significant change in their business habits. They are leaving their legacy systems behind. Why? Because they are finding new solutions – practical, efficient, and cost-effective solutions – that they were previously unaware of. And when it comes to CRM solutions, we’re finding the now more than every that baby boomers love Zoho CRM. Of course, we knew they would love what Zoho has to offer – but perhaps you have to hear it (or read it) to believe it yourself.

Here are 4 reasons why baby boomers are leaving their legacy systems behind – and why they love Zoho CRM.

1. Because their legacy systems lack efficiency.

It’s not surprising, but it needs to be said. Legacy systems aren’t getting updated as frequently as CRM solutions, like Zoho CRM, are. We are constantly focused on innovative software and updates. We are always introducing new integrations, and we hear you when feedback is expressed.

Here are just a few of the Zoho integrations that we are proud to offer:

2. Legacy systems aren’t always adapted for mobile.

Can you imagine not being able to access your email on your iPhone or Android? It sounds archaic, right?

Now, imagine not being able to access your CRM on mobile. Let’s say you’re on a conference call while traveling, and your client asks for an update on invoice 0001. Imagine having to respond with, “Sorry, Joe – I’ll have to get back to you when I’m in the office on my desktop.”

You won’t run into this problem with Zoho! It’s so important that your desktop and mobile software solutions work in synchrony, and we shouldn’t expect anything less from a CRM.

baby boomers zoho crm

3. They make Millennials skeptical.

By 2025, 3 out of every 4 employees globally will be within the Millennial market. So, we need to pave the way for Millennials to take over – because they will.

Millennials need on-the-go, mobile solutions. They need to have data in the palm of their hand, 24/7. Don’t let your outdated legacy systems drive away Millennials, your future employees.

4. Training and Support are nonexistent.

Legacy solutions lack training and account management representatives – because no one uses them anymore! Innovation is key within new software solutions. Baby boomers are quickly realizing this, and understand the importance of having account management by your side.

Innovation is truly integral to business success. Using software that is efficient and effective for your business means impacting your bottom line and generating ROI for your team. When searching for new software and systems, find a solution that will work with you – helping your company every step of the way.

Curious about how Zoho services and solutions can work for your business? Schedule a consultation with a member of our ZBrains team today!

IT Consultant

What To Look For In An IT Consultant

When the time comes to hire an IT consultant, there will likely be a plethora of questions running through your mind. Where should you start? Who should you look for? What do you need to pay attention to throughout the interview process?

Yes, the process – it can be overwhelming if your team isn’t prepared. Before you even begin your search, you must know what to look for in a consultant or team; if you don’t, you’ll be wasting a ton of time.

In this blog, we’ll give you an overview of what your team needs to look for in an IT consultant before you even begin your search. We know you’re busy, so efficiency is key. Read on.

Here are 5 things you need to look for in an IT consultant.

1. Your consultant has worked within your industry.

Nothing is better than industry experience. So, ask for experience examples within your specific industry/vertical. Your selected consultant should have worked within your vertical before. Even better, do they have experience with a similar project you’re seeking to complete?

When asking about past work, it is also important to understand if the consultant or team has a speciality. Understand their strengths, and align these strengths with what is needed for your project. As a consultancy, are they great with business process optimization? Accounting? Development? Integration?

2. They can provide references.

If your consultant or team can’t provide references, stop the interview right there. They should provide references when being interviewed (and ideally, they can provide references for companies within your industry.) This is truly the ultimate interview tool, so be sure to ask this question in the first round.

3. They have excellent communication skills.

Through email and phone, your IT consultant should have impeccable communication skills. While being prompt is important (and keep note of this) communicating effectively is even more important. Are they answering questions clearly? Do you require clarity during Q&A? Do you have a complete understanding of their experience and education?

4. They’ve been in the business for a while.

Much like references, being in the biz is integral to a consultant’s success. For your project, it might not be appropriate to hire an IT consultant straight out of college, for example. Instead, discover what you’re after – someone who has experience and a track record of commitment will help you not only execute your project efficiently, but also uncover additional areas of opportunity.

5. They’re up for the challenge.

Ask them – are they ready to help your team move the needle? Are they ready to create change?

Yes, yes, and yes!

Being up for the challenge is perhaps the most important part of the process. Gauge their level of interest and passion for your project. A consultant should not only provide expertise for execution, but also offer guidance on what’s possible and best for your business.

When it comes to hiring an IT consultant or team for your business, you must consider these five things when interviewing your potential partner. At ZBrains, we are proud to offer it all. From passion and leadership to experience and communication, we are pleased to work with leading businesses across their respective industries. Consider partnering with our team here.

ZBrains Solves Problems

How ZBrains Solves Problems and Provides Solutions

When searching for a partner, whether a marketing agency, software consultancy or strategic contractor, there are three key areas of consideration – expertise, impact and efficiency. Regardless of the type of vendor or partner, every company or contractor your business partners with should focus solving problems and providing the solutions you need. As one of Zoho’s top US partners, we are proud to do just that – ZBrains solves problems, and we consistently provide solutions. We focus on generating ROI and impacting revenue for every single one of our clients.

When we first meet with potential clients, we often hear the same five pain points (so, if you’re reading this and you feel one of the below, you’re not alone):

    • “Our team doesn’t have time for X”
    • “Our team is so busy doing Y”
    • “Data is spread across so many pieces of software”
    • “We need education on X and Y”
    • “We have experienced massive growth, but we need something scalable”

These are the problems we hear, and these are the solutions we solve.

But, how do we as consultants truly find solutions for our clients? In this blog, we’ll take you through four solutions we use for clients across a plethora of industries and verticals. This will help you and your team consider pivots in process, planning and strategy as we move into the year ahead.

Here are four ways ZBrains solves problems and provides solutions.

1. We focus on bridging the gap.

As consultants, we truly focus on bridging the gap between business needs and technology solutions through open collaboration and business process analysis with our clients. We are focused on on enabling your business to make smart technology investments, improve practices, and save time and money. Your in-house team might be comfortable with certain processes over the years – yet, as a Zoho partner, we can provide a different view and a new spectrum of expertise that can be applied on bridging certain gaps in processes and efficiencies. We practice the ‘connector’ approach – if our clients have a pain or need, we provide the solution – bridging the gap between the two, and taking you through every single step of the way.

2. We focus on reducing costs and becoming more efficient.

When planning budgets, especially as companies reach year-end, reducing costs is often key to success. While increasing revenue is the favorable choice for any business in any industry, becoming more efficient is often the key driver to impacting the bottom line.

Whether it’s through software or business process, we bring consultation and expertise to the table – and work with you to provide measurable impacts to your team. Instead of telling us what you need, we become part of your team, offering a consultative approach every step of the way. We are always learning from our clients’ successes and challenges, which is why we ensure that every project is better than the last.

3. We are always innovating.

Have you seen the integrations and add-ons we provide? We are proud to have a team of developers and strategists who are focused on solving any problem that comes our way – seriously, any problem. We’re created add-ons for calendar scheduling, invoice and proposal management, integrations for services like Slack, and so much more. If you have a challenge, ZBrains solves problems and provides solutions.

4. We work with every level of management.

Working with executives is different from working with mid-management – we get that. Executives see things differently from mid-management – they look at data from a 40,000 foot view, whereas mid-management are in the trenches, making changes to tactics and pulling levers to generate results. This is exactly we why provide reporting solutions for executives, while developing apps and integration for mid-management.

At ZBrains, we are proud to be a leader in experience and industry knowledge with Zoho, CRM management, business processes and integrated solutions. As we are planning ahead for 2018, we are excited at the road ahead and can’t wait to bring on new clients to our team – our ZBrains family. ZBrains solves problems and provides solutions every single step of the way – and we’re ready to do it for you!

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