8 Steps to Make Your CRM Project a Success
As CRM specialist, we have seen this technology’s evolution over the years from just being a sales tool – to now helping marketing and customer service departments coordinate inter-departmental actions – so they dramatically improve their operations and offerings. However, we believe the key to experiencing successful outcomes is creating a strategy and plan – well before a new CRM system is implemented. What this means is you must first gain a thorough understanding of how CRM technology will best meet your strategic business objectives, and support specific and unique processes.
With over 700+ CRM implementations under our belt, we highlight 8 steps so you experience a successful outcome too.
1. Develop a strong CRM vision
To understand the businesses’ aspirations for a new CRM system, you must establish why it’s required and what the expected success will actually look like – before determining how key success metrics will be measured. For example, key aims may include generating a total view of each client relationship, increasing lead generation, improving quality of management information reporting and improving account retention and service delivery. However, avoid tackling all CRM goals in a single implementation – but seek a phased approach that focuses on quick wins first.
Once you have achieved this insight, a list of business requirements should be generated, then prioritised and reviewed against the capabilities of the different CRM products – to determine the best fit. Key areas to be examined amongst the usual selection criteria should include license costs and long-term cost of ownership.
2. Map existing business processes
Whilst it’s important to understand the pain points in business processes that can be fixed by CRM – it’s also important to appreciate how your employees have to use CRM software as well as how they want to use it. The big mistake is seeking a new CRM tool with features that some employees may never touch – which actually makes key tasks more difficult or complex. Insight must be gained about what tools your team are currently using and what processes they follow, the most common tasks undertaken – and then establish how those tasks map to the new CRM software.
To help the evaluation, seek advice from users who understand these day-to-day issues – so engage frontline salespeople and managers – as well as IT managers too. This process also presents a superb opportunity to gain clarity on how well processes are currently working and will identify how CRM can improve their efficiency – often by removing duplication of effort and applying greater process automation.
Having defined a success criteria for CRM, your targets should be specific and measurable. Therefore, think about the information that CRM will need to track – specific to each of these goals and what reports, charts and dashboards will be required to measure progress.
3. Capture CRM data
To achieve organisational goals, the fields required to track on each CRM record must be considered. For example, if taking a phased approach by leading with an initial CRM sales team deployment – establish what fields will need to be tracked on records for accounts, contacts, opportunities and leads. This could be the options that will appear in drop-down fields, and which fields should be set as mandatory to ensure consistent data quality. It can be tempting to go overboard but an excessive number of fields may prove a barrier to early user adoption and will add to the administration overhead.
4. Prepare data
Often underestimated are the resources required to consolidate and prepare existing data for migration to a new CRM system. To ensure organisational readiness, ensure that these are answered:
- What data needs to be imported into CRM?
- Where is it currently stored?
- How good is the data quality?
- Does it need cleansing?
- How far back to go with relationship history data?
- What duplicate matching rules must be set?
5. Integrate CRM
Establish which applications will CRM need to integrate with and what direction the data will flow. If your goal is to create a single view of each relationship, integrating CRM with an external data source is likely to be a high priority. As well as feeding data from other applications, CRM will also push data to other sources. This could include creating a new order in the back-office ERP system – when a CRM sales opportunity is converted. Other CRM integrations may include email marketing, web forms, Sharepoint and eCommerce platforms.
6. Manage user security
Consider how CRM will be shared across a business. A list should be complied of users, roles and groups that will have CRM permissions and definition of what level of access they should get. Flexible CRM solutions like Microsoft Dynamics CRM enable advanced user permissions which can include team and territory management to precisely control which records users are entitled to access and what controls they can use.
7. Highlight potential risks
Identify the main project hazards and make an assessment of how these could threaten the overall project’s success. For example, the CRM technology could be a risk if the database isn’t flexible enough to adapt to processes, or if the system lacks the scalability to grow with the business. The supporting processes represent a risk if these are poorly defined, or if existing gaps aren’t identified.
8. Create a user adoption plan
The biggest risk to CRM success is low user adoption. In our experience, successful CRM projects always meet the requirements of its users – so engage with them at an early stage to consult for ideas and stimulate interest. Failure to listen to users’ needs and build support from the ground up can result in challenging user adoption barriers. Here are 4 key points to consider when developing an effective user adoption strategy:
- Ensure users know why a CRM system is being implemented
- Listen to user ideas, requirements and concerns
- Deliver ongoing user training and support
- Measure usage that focuses on positive reinforcement
With more than a decade of experience in CRM technology implementations and as Gold CRM partners of leading CRM providers Microsoft Dynamics and Salesforce, we can offer the best advice to help make your CRM project a success. You can call us at 01296 328 689 or email us at email@example.com.
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Overview of Dynamics 365 for Customer Service — October 2018 Release
As part of our Dynamics 356 October 2018 updates series, we have published 10 Best Picks from Dynamics 365 and Dynamics 365 for Sales in our previous posts. In this blog, we’ll now look at what new capabilities Microsoft is bringing in the for Dynamics 365 for customer service app.
The new service scheduling solution is built on Universal Resource Scheduling (URS) in Dynamics 365 for Project Automation and Field Service. It allows the customer service team to view and schedule resources to service activities by considering the availability of employees, facilities, and equipment.
The URS functionality includes a Schedule Board that allows users to Filter View, Resource search, Resource sorting, and hours/day/week/month view of service activities.
Customer Service Admin Settings
In the October 2018 release, Service Management will move into the Customer Service Hub and will be accessible through the sitemap.
Using the Unified Interface, Customer Service managers will have the ability to configure and manage customer service tasks such as configuring public or private queues, setting up parent-child case settings, configuring routing rules, configuring automatic record creation and update rules, and setting up service level agreements (SLAs), along with other capabilities.
Suggest Similar Cases
With the use of Microsoft Text Analytics APIs and case information across various entity records, Similar Cases will be able to help customer service representatives find appropriate answers while reducing average handling time.
A new Similar Cases grid, which is expected to be added in December 2018, will dynamically list completed cases that match characteristics and keywords from the latest case record. This new function will also be able to suggest contextual knowledge articles to customer service agents to help them resolve cases faster.
Relevance Search for knowledge management
For the first time, Relevance Search will now be made available in the Customer Service Hub. Knowledge base search will leverage the relevance search to deliver the most relevant knowledge articles and display only the necessary information in the results list allowing agents to find information faster.
The feature also searches notes and attachments of knowledge articles from within a case.
The points mentioned above are some of the major functional updates Microsoft are bringing to Dynamics for Customer Service starting this October. Stay tuned for more blog articles that will highlight the updates in other important Dynamics 365 apps.
If you would like to find out how you can take advantage of the latest Dynamics for Customer Service updates within your organisation, contact us today for a no obligation consultation on 01296 328 689.
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Event Recap: Seelogic Organises First ‘App in a Day’ Event at Microsoft UK HQ
A joint Microsoft and SeeLogic initiative kicked off at the UK’s first ‘App in a Day’ workshop at Microsoft’s UK HQ last week. Over 40 delegates, that included senior IT personnel from MOD, Cabinet Office, HMRC, NHS Trusts, Williams F1 and Autoglass were selected to attend the event. After a simple briefing, they were all tasked with using PowerApps to create a powerful app in under 6 hours.
The event was moderated and facilitated by various SeeLogic members. Lenny Khan, the head of Customer Success and Partnership kickstarted the event with the overall overview of the event. Emma Waas, Sales & Marketing Director gave an overview of Business Application Platform before the Managing Director, Eddie Harford took sessions on PowerApps, Common Data Service and Microsoft Flow.
Adrian Cristea, Value Manager at Three UK, won the award for most innovative app idea. The app can be used by hospitals and emergency services – enabling incident details to be entered on tablets and used when reaching the hospital. The app also uses GPS to track how fast ambulances will get to the hospital too.
SeeLogic is providing consultancy and training for PowerApps users so they can build web and mobile – canvas or role-based apps in hours – rather than months. Although users don’t require any programming skills, for more complex app builds, Seelogic also provide user interface design. Crucially, apps are safe to build and present no ‘shadow IT’ risk to an organisation’s existing infrastructure – due to in-built, enterprise-ready security and governance.
Eddie Harford, managing director at SeeLogic said, “Being a free Office 365 tool, it’s surprising that both IT industry partners and end-users still possess no understanding of PowerApps and what it can actually achieve. However, all the ‘App in a Day’ delegates unanimously agreed that the potential of PowerApps is staggering and the types of applications and their potential uses are almost limitless too.”
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Could you benefit from a free CRM consultation?
• Are your employees reticent to use the CRM?
• Is your current CRM system slow and inefficient?
• Do you spend more time doing admin than following up on sales opportunities?
• Are you lagging behind with an outdated CRM solution but apprehensive about moving to the cloud?
If you have answered yes to any of these common CRM frustrations, SeeLogic can help. SeeLogic is offering a FREE CRM consultation from one of our expert consultants. Read more about SeeLogic here.
How to arrange your free CRM consultation ?
Email us – firstname.lastname@example.org
Or contact us online.
Below are some of the most frequent CRM frustrations we have come across together with how we can help alleviate these issues.
My employees resent or refuse to use our CRM system
This must be the most frequent issues we come across. If, used effectively, CRM can increase a company’s revenue and retention rates by between 10%-20% *source Aberdeen research
Therefore, ensuring your employees all use your chosen CRM system is vital to success.
Here are some of the barriers to user-adoption that we often come across:
Even with the best technology in the world, if users are told they must use the system and are left to get on with it, barriers can often immediately be put up. This is especially true of users who find new technologies intimidating and may have found comfort in knowing how to use their old system, even if it was over-convoluted or outdated.
Instead, a “carrot” approach that assesses and manages the impact of change on the different user groups is often far more successful. Getting users’ buy-in requires taking them on a journey by understanding their current points of pain, listening to their needs and introducing the relevant areas and benefits of the new solution in relation to their role with lots of support thrown in.
Inadequate Change Management
SeeLogic can work with your organisation to develop a communication plan and change management strategy to ensure maximum user adoption within your company, including; staff surveys, contextual training, email campaigns, product previews, high quality in-context training and on-going support. To discuss this further, contact us to claim your free CRM consultation.
Presenting a user with a new system and providing generic ‘this button does this and this button does that’ training will immediately turn users off.
However, contextual, scenario-based training will help users understand how the new system will be used daily-to-day and the benefits to them in their role.
System is not aligned to business processes
E.g. Users are working around the system, rather than the system working for them. Users are often presented with too many fields; perhaps some unnecessary, and others not relevant at that stage of the process.
A detailed scoping exercise prior to the CRM implementation is crucial to successful user adoption. An expert consultant will challenge you as to whether you really need so many fields and tease out what information is required at each stage of the customer journey and for management reporting purposes. This way, when it comes to project go-live, users will not be bombarded to enter lots of unnecessary information but instead be guided to enter the right information at the right time. Furthermore, many CRM systems now offer machine learning to further prompt users as to what the next-best actions are.
We are lagging behind using on-premises CRM but are apprehensive about moving to the Cloud
If your company relies on an on-premises solution and is cautious about moving to the cloud, then you are not alone. In the past, CIOs were very concerned with security and complexity when it came to migrating data to cloud services. These fears have been abated with the continual improvement and development to cloud environments. In fact, the cloud is often a more secure environment than on-premises solutions.
Benefits of moving to the cloud
Overall, on premises environments are more susceptible to attacks than cloud hosted provision *source Alert Logic[/text-with-icon][text-with-icon icon_type=”image_icon” icon_image=”2095″]
Not having to pay to maintain or service on premise servers is very appealing. Typically, on- premises CRM systems cost 60% higher on an annual basis compared to their cloud based counterparts, starting after the first year!
Limited internal support to maintain hardware and software
With on-premises solutions, new versions of software require IT teams to test and install the upgrades and sometimes hardware and server software to be upgraded to meet minimum system requirements. However, moving your CRM data to the cloud will reduce the pressure on your internal IT team as there is no hardware to support and maintain.[/text-with-icon][text-with-icon icon_type=”image_icon” icon_image=”2096″]
Mobile access to your CRM system, anytime, anywhere. Using your free CRM consultation, an independent consultant like SeeLogic can help you make the best decision for your business by assessing your requirements and making recommendations based on specific business needs.
My current CRM software is clunky, slow and painful to upgrade
This issue is very common; many of our clients have come to us with an over- customised CRM. This causes inherent issues such as; upgrades causing things to error and integrations to break, being stuck on an outdated version of software efficiently. This then leads to employees not wanting to use it and users finding it difficult to retrieve data. CRM is meant to increase efficiency within your workplace, however if over customised, or not aligned to business processes it can do quite the opposite.
With so much functionality available at your fingertips with today’s modern CRM solutions, there should be very little reason to customise a CRM. SeeLogic operates a “configure-first” approach by advising organisations how they can best align both business processes and technology in order to gain maximum benefit from their CRM investments whilst keeping total cost of ownership low.
At SeeLogic we offer a range of services to ensure the CRM projects we manage suit your business needs, not over complicate things. Business process mapping, Digital transformation and high-quality training will support a successful implementation and increase user adoption.
Founded in 2004, SeeLogic has built up an impressive client-base, including well-known international and global brands. In this time, we have successfully implemented 100’s of CRM projects, which include global, multi-site CRM roll-outs and complex integration projects.
With offices in both the UK and Nepal, SeeLogic can provide around the clock support as well as accelerated delivery times where required. SeeLogic also has eleven Centres of Excellence focused on the ever-expanding components of CRM and related technologies.
For a limited time offer we are offering a free and no obligation consultation with one of our senior consultants. They will listen to your CRM issues and provide you with tailored recommendations to take you from CRM frustration to CRM-led business transformation. You are not obligated to choose SeeLogic to deliver the recommendations, although we do hope you will choose us to help transform and develop your business.
Reasons for working with SeeLogic
- We are product agnostic and select the right solution for your business needs
- We provide an end-to-end service including process mapping, implementation and ongoing support
- SeeLogic understand user-adoption is the main challenge of any project roll out and have many tools to help your make the most of your system
- We are proud partners of software providers and other IT businesses, meaning we have a large resource and intelligence network to draw from
- Support teams in UK and Nepal for follow-the-sun support
- Combined CRM experience of over 20 years, our team is made up of CRM experts, not just salespeople
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FE CRM Solution
Not just for business – how CRM is creating new opportunities within further education.
If you work in further education, you could be excused for thinking that customer relationship management systems (CRM) are just for businesses. However, replace ‘customer’ for ‘student’ then suddenly, CRM becomes hugely relevant and presents a wealth of untapped opportunities for FE institutions.
Imagine a scenario where you could engage with prospective students, build a profile of them and then automatically follow-up with timely and relevant communications based upon their interests and behaviours. Wouldn’t it then be great if once students enrolled, you could continue capturing information at each stage of their journey through the college, such as; their attainment levels, learning styles and communication preferences in order to provide personalised learning and work experience to improve learning outcomes? And, what if once the students had left the college, you could continue to stay in touch and connect them with further training and opportunities relevant to their careers?
Well, just as businesses use CRM to manage all of their stakeholders, FE institutions can use CRM to provide 360° student lifecycle management to; increase enrolment, improve student experiences and nurture relationships with alumni as well as industry in order to open up new sources of revenue.
SeeLogic has developed both complete and integrated CRM solutions to help colleges make the most of their relationships.
- An intelligent marketing platform allowing communications to be automatically be sent based on a variety of triggers
- A single depository for student information, allowing different departments to share knowledge – increasing efficiencies and providing valuable insight to help provide a better quality service
- A recruitment portal allowing employers to source relevant students based on their chosen study areas and experience
- An alumni portal to allow past students to stay in touch and find out about further study opportunities
- An online facility booking portal, allowing colleges to book out unused facilities such as’ lecture theatres, gyms and halls to businesses and the public when not in use to generate new sources of revenue
“By implementing CRM we were able to gain more apprenticeship opportunities by connecting with more alumni and understanding what companies need and what opportunities are available by analysing the data to a greater level of segmentation and detail.”
Tim Keighley, Executive Director of Business Development – Aylesbury College
How our FE CRM solution can help your institution
For a no obligation discussion about how CRM could help your institution make the most of its relationships, contact our friendly team on 01296 328689.
Request Call Back
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What’s the right CRM for your organisation?
Discover which CRM product is the best fit for your business
At SeeLogic we specialise in the selection and implementation of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems and we understand that every business has different requirements.
The industry leading CRM products that we offer (Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Sage CRM and Infor CRM) can all be deployed either on-premise, in the cloud or on mobile devices and there are a number of ways you can acquire these systems, either by outright purchase, “per user per month” rental payments or on a software as a service (SaaS) basis.
Gain a good understanding of what CRM products do
So, how do you choose which application and deployment type is the best fit for your company?
Take a look at our product chart below and contact us to find out more!