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It's CRM, NOT Magic!

by Corie Kaftalovich

December 22, 2010

Though created with the utmost advanced technology and packaged with the promise of making your business one smooth-sailing dream, CRM should be viewed as a tool that creates magic and NOT as magic itself.

Too often, CRM is assumed to function like the acclaimed Ronco Rotisserie, with the philosophy of “set it and forget it”.  With that mentality, it is no wonder that over 50% of CRM implementations fail before even going live. Businesses alike need to understand that you can’t simply buy a CRM system and expect it to do all the work for you. Instead, companies need to recognize their role as the CRM driver, guiding the system from point A to B, according to their well-thought-out roadmap and clear vision.

Use it or lose it

Companies express a great amount of enthusiasm prior to implementing a CRM system. Once the system goes live, the enthusiasm begins to dwindle as they quickly come to realize that the system is only as good as the people who are using it.  After all, the system can’t input data, optimize client relationships and drive the sales cycle without human interaction. Yet, so many businesses blame the system for failing, when all along it was their lack of commitment and use.

Strategize in order to Optimize

Commitment to a CRM system can come in many forms. However, the most crucial form of commitment is that of developing a full-proof strategy to accompany and compliment the system’s capabilities. If the company adopts a CRM prior to assessing their needs and aligning their requirements to the system’s functionalities, the system will be incapable of delivering those magical results. Comp anies should approach this problem by taking the time to construct a roadmap of where they currently stand and where they would like there company to go. From there, they can assess what role the CRM system will play in their journey and furthermore, how best to optimize on what the system can offer. 

You’re in it for the Long Haul

Apart from relying on the CRM system to do it’s magic, companies also fail to view the system as a long-term solution and instead perceive it as a quick fix. With that being said, companies need to learn and optimize on all of the system’s features and functionalities. From sales automation, to marketing initiatives and reporting, the CRM system should provide the company with the key tools they need to simplify and enhance their business model. The system needs to become a part of the company culture and integrate itself into the company’s daily routines. If they fail to do so, the ability for that system to foster development and growth for the company will be limited and will most likely lead to failure.

Once precise goals are set, a clear blueprint is established and sufficient commitment is recognized, the implementation of a CRM system can allow a business to take off with flying colours. Beginning with enhancing organizational performance and then ending with a tighter work flow and sales cycle, CRM can become an invaluable tool for any organization.  

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