If you have a passion for coding and are looking to enter the exciting field of CRM development, this post is for you. We will be discussing how to become a CRM developer and what skills are needed in order to succeed in this role.
It’s also important that they know how to use software engineering tools such as Eclipse IDE (integrated development environment) or Visual Studio IDE (integrated development environment). Being able to program in at least one object-oriented language is another requirement for this position. Some of the most sought after skills include knowledge of HTML5
Customer Relationship Management or CRM is one of the fastest-growing industries, expected to reach $80 billion in revenue by 2025 as quoted by superoffice.com!
Hence, the CRM industry has created a considerable market demand for developers who can extend the capabilities of existing CRM to help businesses achieve their goals.
CRM developer has become one of the highest paying Computer Science jobs, especially in the post-COVID era, where managing customer relationships has turned entirely digital. Almost every business, small or large, is adopting it.
Introduction to CRM
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is a digital platform that enables businesses to manage relationships with their prospects, leads, and customers. It is a combination of tools that helps companies acquire new customers and nurture existing ones.
A CRM system’s primary goal is to ensure that every interaction of an enterprise with its customer is carried out most smoothly and efficiently possible. By nurturing customer relationships using CRM systems, businesses can improve lead generation, conversion, customer retention, and overall business profits.
Apart from enabling companies to have smooth interactions with customers, CRM can also be customized to perform complicated business processes that can otherwise be quite challenging. This is where the need for a CRM developer arises.
A CRM makes it easier for a company to identify specific types of customers and communicate with them. Consider this simple example; A company gives customers the choice to subscribe to a monthly delivery of a product or purchase the product on an as-needed basis.
With a CRM, the company can quickly generate a list of customers who once subscribed but switched to buying as needed. Sales representatives can then reach out only to those customers to find why they’re no longer subscribers. Also, analysts can scan the customer data for valuable insights regarding why they switched and what might convince them to switch back.
The simplest CRMs are centralized systems that a company can organize and access information about each customer or lead—basically little more than a database. However, many CRM systems are much more complicated and customizable.
They can meet almost any business challenge. However, it takes programming skills and a deep understanding of the platform to set up the integrations and code the plugins that make that happen. So that’s what CRM developers do.
The Role of a CRM Developer
As the CRM industry has grown, companies have been forced to rethink how they manage their customer data. This has led to a shift in demand for CRM developers as more and more organizations are looking to hire experts that can help them streamline their processes through technology. If you’re interested in becoming a CRM developer, here’s what you should know about the job market and what it takes.
The title ‘CRM developer’ causes some confusion because software developers build custom CRMs for clients from scratch. Some people also confuse CRM developers with CRM administrators responsible for managing a company’s customer relationship management system.
But CRM developers—sometimes called CRM technical developers—specialize in coding enhancements for one or more customer relationship management platforms. Regardless of what system they specialize in, these programmers are responsible for extending the capabilities of those systems with custom plugins, integrations, and modules to meet a company’s business goals.
A CRM developer is a software developer who specializes in implementing enhancements for a CRM system based on any business requirements. Any business’ CRM requirements are not always met by the CRM systems that exist in the market. Hence they hire CRM developers to design and create additional modules, custom plugins, or a suite of software applications that can integrate with the existing CRM systems.
A CRM developer can also work independently by identifying business pain points in the existing CRM systems and developing solutions to solve those pain points.
The role of a CRM developer can be categorized into a broad spectrum of responsibilities, some of them being:
One of the first responsibilities of a CRM developer would be to connect with stakeholders and end-users to understand their pain points concerning the existing CRM systems. This step will be a prerequisite for designing the system that the client needs.
Apart from meeting with clients, a CRM developer may also have to understand the existing CRM system and identify any gaps or shortcomings that can be found in the system. This can help the CRM developer brainstorm new solutions that can overcome the holes in the existing CRM.
After the gaps are identified, a CRM developer will have to design the most plausible and cost-effective solutions to overcome the existing CRM system’s shortcomings. Designing may include a high-level design that consists of the overall functionalities and a technical method to delve into the more technical aspects. This step may also involve deciding which technologies should be used for the implementation of the solutions.
4. Of course, one of the primary responsibilities is to develop custom CRM solutions. This may involve developing code for custom plugins, add-on solutions, or completely independent software applications.
After the implementation, a CRM developer may have to perform multiple rounds of testing, including unit testing, integration testing, performance testing, and creating Junit testing frameworks to ensure that the CRM solution developed is in the best shape possible.
CRM developers should ensure that CRM solutions are robust, efficient, bug-free, and meet the clients’ requirements.
Once the custom CRM solution is rolled into production, a CRM developer may have additional responsibilities to support and maintain the system.
This will include fixing any clients’ issues and coming up with minor enhancements based on their needs.
A CRM system primarily involved collecting inputs and data from numerous third-party applications such as Content Management System (CMS), email responders, social media platforms, Google analytics, and many more similar applications.
Hence, a CRM developer’s role might involve building and maintaining integrations with third-party applications to support a smooth overflow of data from both ends.
Stakeholders and clients may want to view the custom CRM data in real-time.
Hence a CRM developer’s role might also include building customized dashboards that showcase real-time data from the CRM system.
Companies, massive enterprises, have numerous people involved in handling CRM systems.
For such cases, CRM developers may have to design custom workflows for smooth operations across the CRM system.
A CRM developer’s role will probably include documentation of the technical specifications and configurations involved in the customer CRM solutions developed by them.
Also, clients need to be educated about handling the custom CRM design, and hence a CRM developer may have to provide hands-on training to clients and create training materials for the same.
Education and Certifications
Most of the job listings for CRM developers list a Bachelor’s or equivalent degree in Computer Science as a requirement. Although this seems like a standard requirement, this might not be an absolute necessity for a CRM developer job.
For CRM developers, more stress is on having hands-on experience with CRM systems.
Focus on Force is the ideal preparation for your Salesforce Certification. I’ve spent eight years working with the Salesforce platform in various roles (including business analyst, project manager, consultant, solutions designer, and solutions architect), and worked my way through 10 certifications in order to move up the career ladder.
Salesforce Certifications are Tough!
Which is exactly as it should be: they actually mean something to the real world, and you’ll bring tons of value to the company or clients when you pass the exam. As a result, having a Salesforce Certification (or many) under your belt carries a considerable salary premium. By setting yourself apart from your uncertified peers and becoming extremely well acquainted with the platform, you’re able to benefit from new job opportunities, promotions within existing jobs, and instant credibility.
We offer the following Salesforce Certifications
- Salesforce Administrator Certification Study Guide
- Salesforce Platform Builder Study Guide
- Salesforce Advanced Admin Study Guide
- Salesforce Sales Cloud Study Guide
- Salesforce Service Cloud Study Guide
- Salesforce Experience (Community) Cloud Study Guide
- Salesforce Platform Dev 1 Study Guide
- Salesforce Platform Dev 2 Study Guide
- Salesforce Sharing And Visibility Designer Study Guide
- Salesforce Data Architecture And Management Designer Study Guide
We offer the following Salesforce Certification Practice Exams
- Salesforce Administrator Certification Practice Exams
- Salesforce Platform App Builder Practice Exams
- Salesforce Advanced Admin Practice Exams
- Salesforce Sales Cloud Practice Exams
- Salesforce Service Cloud Practice Exams
- Salesforce Experience (Community) Cloud Practice Exams
- Salesforce Platform Dev 1 Practice Exams
- Salesforce Platform Dev 2 Practice Exams
- Salesforce Sharing And Visibility Designer Practice Exams
- Salesforce Data Architecture And Management Designer Practice Exams
An added plus for CRM developers would be the experience and knowledge of the marketing side of CRM systems, such as business processes about customers, sales workflows, customer journeys, etc.
Understanding marketing and sales processes can be pretty beneficial in landing a CRM developer job or even working independently as a CRM developer.
Certifications can also significantly help gain experience in CRM systems and prove your credibility to potential clients. Aspiring CRM developers may take up certifications offered by Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, and similar ones based on their interests.
Salaries and Career Prospects
A CRM developer is not a generalist programmer. Instead, becoming a CRM developer needed specific programming skills, and thus the salaries can be pretty lucrative. A CRM developer’s salary is known to range anywhere from $100,000 to $125,00 per year, as quoted by TrailHead.
With the right skills and experience, a CRM developer’s future career prospects are pretty broad. As a CRM developer, you can work with large enterprises or even independently by developing solutions based on gaps in the existing system.
Top 9 Tips to Become a Dynamics CRM Developer
It is everyone’s dream to work in a domain where the demand is high, the pay lucrative, and the choices widespread. A career in Dynamics CRM is one career path that technical developers can choose without too much worry. This blog will help you with ten tips to become the best Dynamics CRM Developer you can be. At a high level, this is what you need to do –
Create a CRM Career Map
You should identify your area of interest in CRM. Rather than having a vague knowledge of the broader CRM concepts, try to focus on any suitable size of your interest. This can include specialization in modules like Sales, Service, and Marketing or on the CRM customization and configuration side or integrating CRM with other applications. In short, you don’t need to be a core developer to work on CRM.
Read about Dynamics CRM
I am always reading open doors to the world of knowledge. Update yourself on the latest releases and changes happening in the CRM industry. Keep an eye on Microsoft CRM blogs and other blogs by the industry pioneers.
Community is a platform that provides a wide range of learning opportunities for a CRM user. It is a place where you can get expert opinions on your issues. A ‘always ready to help’ group of people will guide you to understand more about Dynamics. This open forum is the ‘best classroom’ for a CRM beginner, where we will get the opportunity to interact with top industry people, including Dynamics MVPs. If you want to start a career in CRM, join the Dynamics community.
Imagine getting a certification from Microsoft, which has worldwide acceptance! Microsoft provides opportunities to showcase your CRM skills to the world by achieving various certifications. You will also get reference documents from their learning portal.
Certification adds value and increases the confidence recruiters and employers will have when they go through your resume. Know more about Microsoft Dynamics CRM certification at https://www.microsoft.com/en-in/learning/exam-list.aspx
Attend CRM conferences
Attending various meetings and conferences related to CRM enables you to understand more about the platform and the latest happenings in the industry. So, if you get a chance, don’t hesitate to be a part of CRM global meets, webinars, and other sessions. From these conferences, you can find similar-minded people and can grow your CRM network. So, get ready for the next CRM conference!
Check here for the best CRM event and conferences in 2021!
Write about CRM
Reading helps us to gain knowledge, while writing enables us to share the knowledge with others. It also helps to gain attention from people who are interested in Dynamics CRM. So, whenever you learn anything new about CRM, write about it and share it with others. In addition, you can start a personal blog to share your views and thoughts on CRM-related things.
You can also share your articles in Microsoft Community which will provide a global platform for your content. Writing blogs and contributing to discussions on the same will help you understand the concepts very well and make you more confident about what you are working on. Along with reading CRM-related articles, start writing your own.
Always try to be a part of CRM-related groups and communities in media like LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. Meeting like-minded people will enable you to discuss CRM-related things and eventually grow your career. So, whenever you get a chance, try to connect with Dynamics CRM experts and share your views and thoughts with them. Don’t hesitate to seek advice from them whenever needed.
Develop your CRM tools
No knowledge is small when it comes to learning. Once you start working on Dynamics, you may get a chance to develop small products related to CRM.
It may be a small piece of code that may solve a huge business problem. Always try to develop small products or free tools in Dynamics. It will help you gain strong knowledge on the platform while showcasing your expertise to the rest of the world. Microsoft App source is a great platform to showcase your products. Know more at https://appsource.microsoft.com
Analyze before Coding
While you are itching to jump right into creating the best solution for your client’s or your business’ problem, try and start by analyzing various methods that will give you a clear picture of what you want to implement. It also reduces the chance of making mistakes. Understanding the critical business scenarios is critical before you develop something.
Sometimes it is not necessary that coding is needed to solve the problem – there may be some other way to accomplish it by system-level configurations or customizations. As a CRM developer, always think about the best CRM way to solve a problem. So, think before you code.
There is no shortcut for coding! To become a CRM Developer, you should train yourself in coding. Always try to follow standard coding conventions and practices which the industry follows.
Gain knowledge in CRM SDK, Plugin development, and custom workflows. Keep improving your code quality and perform unit testing on your code.