Hate your CRM? Build a New One Before Lunch


Share on LinkedIn

Sound too good to be true? Let me explain:

I was on the phone with a guy name Joe (name changed to protect the customer) from a large tire company who owns at least a dozen major tire franchises with hundreds of shops nationwide.

According to David Taber, CEO of SalesLogistix and author of the book Salesforce.com Secrets of Success, CRM is “really about enabling your people to see better and react sooner”. Joe needed a lightning fast CRM that was simple to use and tailored to the needs of his people so they could respond to their customers quicker.

Joe and I started creating his CRM right away while we were on the phone. We used TrackVia because it is quick to deploy and could be shared by his field based team. He did most of the work, I just pointed him in the right direction.

Here’s what we did:

  • Imported all his customers from a spreadsheet and created the Customer database
  • TrackVia automatically created drop down fields for records with repeating choices
  • We added sales reps and set permissions so reps only view their own account records
  • Sales Managers and executives were added next

Custom reports for sales and management was the final touch, Joe also needed to track customer visits so we created a customer visit database:

  • Added all the right fields like purpose, date visited and comments
  • We even put in a date for next action item so it would work with the calendar view
  • Linked the customer visits to the customer records so customer visits could be viewed and created from inside the customer database

Joe wanted to be able to attach files to customer visits so sales reps could record any documents given to or received from the customer.

I was convinced, so we did it.

We even put his company logo at the top, but only because Joe noticed I had put my picture where his company logo should be!

Joe mentioned he was going to bring the team together and show everyone how to use their new CRM system, he was pretty excited when we hung up.

After I hung up the phone, I realized I was hungry and went to lunch.

Robert Peverley
Robert Peverley is an enterprise systems architect specializing in data storage, backup and disaster recovery. He currently works with The Evaluator Group, an enterprise storage research and analysis company.


  1. Actually it looks like a replacement of spreadsheet to web application. But I can’t help but agree that its a big step for the customer that used a spreadsheet as CRM before.

    The thing is Joe may face a surprise in the future as he needs to build more complex or crosstab report since TrackVia has limited functionality in such area if talk about several tables. As these examples show here, here, here.

  2. With some of the latest enhancements made to TrackVia the functionality that allows for many-to-many relationships has been updated. Now when viewing any record that is linked to you will see a list of all the records that link to it automatically. This allows you to easily follow what records are linked where as well as add linked records. These linked records can all be edited directly from the “parent” database using our in-cell editing. Using a join table you can then setup complex many-to-many relationships between your databases.


Please use comments to add value to the discussion. Maximum one link to an educational blog post or article. We will NOT PUBLISH brief comments like "good post," comments that mainly promote links, or comments with links to companies, products, or services.

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here