What’s the difference between a CRM and a TMS? At Administrate, we’re used to a lot of our potential customers thinking we’re just a CRM and nothing else, when really, we offer a lot of functionality to manage your entire training business, with a CRM built in!

We thought we would take a look at the differences between a CRM and a TMS so you can make sure you're looking at the right software to meet your business needs!

What is a CRM?

Confused cat

A CRM is a Customer Relationship Management system. You can use it to keep track of all your business contact details, such as customers, staff, and suppliers. It will also allow you to track all the interactions your contacts have with your business, from emails and phone calls, to which classes they have signed up to.

What is a TMS?

Confused cat

A TMS is Training Management System. A TMS can be made up of a number of different components to help you manage your entire training operation from one central place. Every system can be made up of different features, but Administrate’s training management system offers users the ability to manage their courses, a CRM, a reporting system, an LMS, a sales system, marketing tools, and the ability to integrate Administrate with their website.

What are the Benefits of a CRM?


Never Lose Contacts Details

If you don’t have a central place to store all your contact details, it can be hard to keep track of every interaction that ever happens with your business! If staff are relying on their own personal system to keep track of data, this can very quickly lead to contact details being hard to find or ending up lost altogether.

A CRM allows you to store everything quickly and easily, so you don’t run the risk of losing those important details ever again. Interactions which take place through your website can be automatically stored in your CRM, so you don’t even need to think about making sure you save the details. You can also manually add any details which come from things like phone calls or in-person interactions in just a few minutes!

Track Interactions

Not only are CRMs a great place to store all your contact details, but they can also keep track of every interaction a contact has with your business. This means if they email you, fill out a contact form, purchase a place in a class, fill in some feedback forms, etc., you can track all of this. This helps you build a complete picture of how each contact interacts with your business and what their needs and preferences are.

This is particularly handy for things like potential deals which your Sales team may be trying to close. A quick check of your CRM will show you which salespeople they have been dealing with and how close the deal is to closing. This will prevent other members of the Sales team contacting them unaware of what other conversations are going on, which could potentially blow the deal!

Build Strong Relationships

Having all this information about your customers and vendors will allow you to build a strong relationship with them. Keeping track of every time you’ve spoken and every transaction they’ve ever been a part of will allow even new members of staff to have a complete picture of a customer before they contact them.

This will also make it really easy to see what sorts of things they like and don’t like, and what sorts of things you need to do to meet their expectations. All this extra information can help you meet their needs easily.

Helps with Remarketing

All the information you have stored in your CRM can also help you secure further business from customers and can help with your remarketing efforts.

If you can quickly see past courses that a student has completed with you, as well as other classes they may have shown interest in or enquired about, it should make it easy to pick relevant classes and information to send to them as part of your remarketing activity. Targeting past students in this specific fashion is more likely to get your repeat business than just sending them lots of general information about all your classes.

Everything is Stored in the One Place

Having all your information on your contacts stored in one place is great for a number of reasons:

  • You don’t need to waste time hunting to find the contact information as you know exactly where to find it.
  • Any updates or edits that are made to a contact record will be visible to everyone straight away, so everyone always has the most up-to-date version.
  • You won’t use incorrect contact information for your contacts, which could annoy your contacts, as well as looking very unprofessional.
  • Every team in your business can access the information from one place without having to go through other teams to find it.

What are the Benefits of a TMS?

Training management system

The great thing about a TMS like Administrate is it offers you all the functionality of a CRM with lots of additional features thrown in as well. We’re here to help you manage your entire training operation from one system!

Save Money

One great benefit of a training management system is the fact it combines a number of other systems in one place, meaning you only need to pay for one system rather than lots of different ones!

As we said above, Administrate gives you the benefits of a course management system, a reporting system, a CRM, an LMS, a sales system, lots of other helpful features, and the ability to integrate with other useful systems such as Xero and SurveyMonkey, all in one place! Think how much money you’re saving by not buying all those systems individually?

Don’t Need to Learn to Use Lots of Systems

As well as saving lots of money by using one system instead of multiple ones, it also makes it easier for your staff to get up to speed on how to use the software.

Having to learn how to use multiple systems, and even just remembering the login details for all of them is more hassle than you need! Not to mention how tricky it will make onboarding new staff who will have to get up to speed very quickly on a lot of different systems, which will all have different ways of working!

It makes much more sense to just stick with one system and learn how to use that expertly rather than using a lot of other systems and not using them to their full potential.

CRM Interacts with Other Systems

Having lots of data stored in your CRM is great, but if you need to use it in other systems or in other places across your business this can mean a lot of exporting and importing data.

Using a TMS like Administrate means all the different parts of your system will work together. This means that any details you gather about your students from any source will be stored in your CRM. It also means you can pull those details across to things like your sales system or your reporting system without having to export them. You also won’t have to worry about making sure the same information is up to date across several different places, as updating it anywhere in Administrate will mean those changes are reflected anywhere that data is shown!

Save Time on Manual Tasks

A TMS is designed to help you save as much time as possible and keep your business running smoothly. One great way it can help you do this is by automating a lot of your previously manual tasks!

  • Automate reports. Once you build your reports in Administrate and decide what data you want them to display, you never need to compile them again! All the information is updated in real-time, so every time you access the report it will show you the most up-to-date information available. You can also choose to send the reports to anyone who needs to see them at set intervals, so you don’t even need to remember to share the data with your colleagues.
  • Automate emails. Instead of having to send every email to every student manually, Administrate lets you set up email triggers, which will send certain emails when certain events trigger them. All you need to do it write the emails and then decide on the trigger event, such as a student buying a place on a course and the email will be sent automatically whenever this trigger event happens in the future.
  • Sell Your courses online. Instead of having to process sales manually and rely on your staff being in the office whenever a customer wants to make a purchase, you can use Administrate to sell your courses online. This means even if it’s outside office hours the sale can still be processed automatically by Administrate and the student will automatically be sent confirmation of their purchase if you set up an email trigger.

Get More Done with the Same Sized Team

By making the most of Administrate’s training management system you will be able to be far more productive and get a lot more done, all without increasing your team size! This means even though you’ll be spending money on a software system, the money you’ll save on not having to hire additional team members will be a huge saving!

Download ‘How a TMS Can Benefit Every Team in Your Business’ eBook

Want to see how Administrate can improve the workflow of every team in your business? Download our ‘How a TMS Can Benefit Every Team in Your Business’ eBook to get the inside scoop!