Steps to consider before implementing CRM solution

Why are you here, reading this? The most probable answer is that you have been hooked with an on-going initiative within your organization to get an CRM solution up & running. Isn’t !

Should you agree, I assure, you are not wasting your time. Go ahead & get started with the tid-bits of what & how of CRM success.

Essence of CRM

Nevertheless the generations of CRM solutions striving to mature in their capabilities, organizations dawns over the challenges of using the solution effectively in order to see a significant return on investment.After wrestling with legacy customer relationship management (CRM) solutions that were difficult to use, customize, and integrate, organizations have learned the importance of having a CRM solution that is flexible enough to fit the way they do business—a solution that enables improved customer loyalty and profitability and supports innovation across the whole organization.

This approach, coupled with best practices in planning, end-to-end solution design, and staged deployment, ensures success and a significant return on investment (ROI).

“Following best practices and partnering with deployment experts who can provide valuable insight and guidance are sure steps on the road to CRM success”

Organizations need to build a stronger foundation for success by making technology decisions that provide platforms for innovation while supporting overall business strategy and performance objectives.

Tid-Bit #1. Know What You Need

Just any CRM solution can’t fit/support the business processes of every organization, so it is important to know how your organization wants to manage its customer relationships. It’s a keen factor to know how your organization works from a high level down to a role level and what you want to achieve with a CRM solution. Take this holistic view of your business and determine the role your customers play within it.

Then define the business problem and the desired benefits within this context. Create scenarios showing how the organization runs now and how it will run once the solution is implemented (“as-is” versus “to-be”). Business Process Diagrams(BPD) can be of help.

Articulate the big picture & break the scope down into smaller steps with clear benefits at each stage and measure those benefits as you grow; you should not have to wait years to see an ROI.

Make sure to identify all of the points at which the solution will integrate.

Tid-Bit #2. Management Support

Before you get go down further, identify the management personnel who can support the initiative. The management should ensure the CRM strategy be adopted, promoted, and executed across the entire organization.

These personnel must be able to make the hard decisions that will be necessary along the way, unite the various teams and departments that will be affected, and ensure everyone clearly understands and cooperates with the organization and what it is trying to achieve.

Tid-Bit #3. End-to-End

Before investing in CRM solutions, addressing end-to-end CRM areas is the key, primarily the Collaborative, Operational & Analytical.

Most of the organizations implement CRM and predominantly focussing only on operational or analytical aspects of CRM, discovered that partial solutions returned limited value over the long term.

User Experience is all about Collaborative CRM. ..

To improve business execution and knowledge building at critical customer touch points, it is critical that users rapidly figure out the system and add value to what they already are doing.If not, they will give up on it or only use it minimally.

“Right batter is the way for the best pan cakes.”

Tid-Bit #4. Hunt for an CRM Solution

As we do, professionals worldwide pretty much know that user acceptance is the single most important success factor for a CRM application.

  • Choose a CRM Solution That Is Easy to Use
    • Intuitive easy-to-use user interface
    • Familiar terminology
  • Choose a CRM Solution That Is Easy to Integrate
    • Front end & Back end technologies
  • Choose a CRM solution that can provide insight, metrics, and dashboards
  • Choose a CRM solution that fits with business, affordable and delivers a quick ROI.

Tid-Bit #5. Build the Right Team

All the best intentions and efforts in the world will not lead to CRM success unless there is a highly skilled and experienced team involved. A CRM initiative can be complex, and your business needs a team that has in-depth CRM expertise and business knowledge as well as the creativity, focus, commitment, and drive to meet the expectations of the project.

However, finding the right CRM partner for your organization can be a daunting task. When you look at potential partners, consider the experience and viability of the vendor’s CRM business, including its financial strength, market position, and leadership. The vendor’s solution, industry and domain expertise, its partnerships and alliances with other vendors, and its client references should also help narrow the field.

Once these factors are speculated, finding the right CRM partner will seem much more straightforward.


Tags: CRM
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