Adriel’s Investigative Journey
Meet 22-year-old junior CRM analyst Adriel Cheung from Singapore. He’s heading into his final year of studying BSc Business Economics at the University of Exeter where he is also the incoming Vice-President of the student investment fund. Adriel joined Gathering Momentum as an intern in April 2021 and has quickly established himself as a valuable member of the team. When he’s not researching, crunching data or studying, Adriel enjoys playing football and watching movies of any genre, inspired by his film-producer father. Adriel is currently working remotely from Singapore where he is also helping to care for his father following a recent operation. I was fortunate enough to be able to catch up with him on a video call to discuss his internship at Gathering Momentum and his experience in working with CRM thus far.
1. Can you tell me about your role as a CRM analyst?
My role essentially involves dissecting the features and functionality of a CRM system and using the resulting information to populate our CRM knowledge database. In the past few months I’ve worked on native integrations, as well as the background and parent organisations of a system. I break down the CRM system, into little bitesize pieces so we can understand them better and translate their capabilities and limitations to our clients.
2. Which CRM systems particularly fascinate you?
I’ve been very intrigued to learn how some of the prominent names such as HubSpot, Zoho and Salesforce became so big in the industry. Now even Microsoft has its own CRM with Dynamics 365. Many of the small CRM systems focus a lot more on customer service and support which helps to simplify implementation. In contrast, larger, more extensive CRM systems include a greater number of native and third-party integrations which make for a highly customisable product that’s more easily integrated with an organisation’s existing set-up.
3. How would you recommend individuals start learning about CRM?
I’d say just by scouring the internet and reading up about CRM as much as you can. CRM websites have dedicated pages to tell you what their system can do. They recognise the widespread unfamiliarity. Secondly, some CRMs have a free version and whilst this may not have as many capabilities as you want, it does give you hands-on experience.
4. Which project have you enjoyed workign on the most thus far?
I’d say when I spent about a month and a half on the CRM integration database. Whilst it was interesting, it was also the most time consuming. Furthermore, you’re never really done with it since it can always be adapted and updated. It also really helped me to understand precisely what CRM systems have in their locker and just how many integrations were out there. It really broadened my perspective of the part CRM plays in the bigger ‘business management’ picture.
5. Where did you learn your analytical skills?
My first hands-on experience was in the Singaporean police force during my compulsory military service. I was fortunate to be put into an administrative role and whilst I did still have military training, 80% of my work was in an office. This really helped me pick up a lot of real-world analytical skills as an 18-year-old fresh out of high school. Those two years which I spent with administrators keeping records and organising data, greatly sharpened my focus and familiarised me with Excel. This made me comfortable in stepping into my new role.
6. What skills have you developed the most since joining the company?
I’d say the biggest thing I’ve picked up is knowing how to infer and imply. Many of us want guidelines and rules when we work. The beautiful thing about the work I’m doing now is that even though I have a set of goalposts, I can’t follow them too strictly since every CRM is different. I have to be flexible and take the initiative in order to work effectively. This is further required with remote teamworking. Rob will come in at times to assist me, but the onus is on me to be disciplined otherwise I’ll let the team, Rob and myself down. That really helps me to be more flexible and to draw discipline and motivation from myself since I really love this job and the broader company objectives which it serves.
7. What are you most anticipating in your future with the company?
I came into Gathering Momentum without any preconceived notions, I came seeking the experience and now I’m really excited to see where the company goes. As an organisation, I hope Gathering Momentum becomes a force in the CRM industry and I hope I’ll be able to continue broadening my analytical skills and learning more and more about CRM systems. Notably, I really feel the work I do is truly helping to achieve our objectives and benefit the wider business community as a whole.
“Working with Adriel is a genuine pleasure. He has the best attitude towards work I’ve ever experienced, everything he’s asked to do is received with enthusiasm and it naturally follows that the standard of his work is very high.” Rob Perry – Managing Director of Gathering Momentum By Ayo Ogunyemi, Marketing & PR Intern