Top Challenges in CRM Implementation
Implementing a CRM solution unquestionably is an excellent way to show how much you value your customers and put customer service on topmost priority. CRM plays a pivotal role to collaborate between customer service, marketing and sales in a company. In fact, salespeople are the ones at the receiving end when it comes to reaping the core benefits of a CRM software. Nevertheless, businesses have been enduring with a number of challenges especially when implementing a new CRM system for SMEs and startups. This article is intended to throw light on some of the top challenges faced during CRM implementation to help you get past the curve.
One of the greatest challenges businesses face when implementing a CRM solution is cost. Yes, it might turn out as a costly affair if done in haste and without a robust planning. Here, it is advisable to decide as why your business needs a CRM. This should give out a clear picture about the type of CRM system and implementation techniques required eventually helping to set a budget for the same. So simply diving in imitating your competitor’s CRM strategies is a lot like shooting in the dark that might lead to total disaster. So it is always a sound thing to discuss the total cost of ownership, IT resources, hardware or software, etc. with all the shortlisted CRM providers.
- Set Clear Objectives
Defining clear objectives that a business intends to achieve with the system is one of the secrets for a smooth and successful CRM implementation. Further, it is advisable to work towards making these objectives as measurable metrics. Failing to do so might make it difficult to evaluate the ROI or core benefits of the system. Next, it’s time to reckon on the functionalities you expect from the system. For this, ask yourself: do you intend to have it for sales, marketing, customer service or all of them? What problems you aim to address with the system? Having a clear idea about the objectives and key functionalities required in the system is a crucial step towards seamless CRM implementation.
- Deployment Type
This is all about on-premise vs. cloud! A perfect escape plan here is to compare the set budget vs. the total cost of ownership that should include cost for all the resources required, maintenance, upgrades, infrastructure, etc. before making up your mind of whether to go for on-premise or cloud. This further boils down to business preferences, type of industry the business operates in, etc. Form a dedicated CRM team within the organization including people from top management, IT department, senior executives, customer support and end-users to discuss about their daily struggles, reasons leading to inefficiencies in their work, suggestions to boost productivity, etc. This should give a good picture about the type of deployment type best suited for your business.
Another widely encountered challenge during CRM implementation is the company-wide training it summons up. This calls for involving all the potential users right from the early stages itself. In fact, if possible it is good to involve all the would-be users of the system right from the decision-making process. Pick key personnel from each department, who can be trained extensively. Eureka is these personnel turning evangelists of the newly rolled-out CRM system, which helps significantly to educate their fellow team members.
- Plan out Integration Needs in Advance
Integrating CRM system with other business management solutions such as ERP, payroll, etc. tops the ‘wish list’ for most of the businesses opting for CRM solution. Nonetheless, it is advisable to plan integration needs if any well beforehand to avoid CRM implementation overkill and information overload to your employees. A smart thing here is to plan a phase 2 for integration needs post company-wide adoption of the CRM system.
- Hire the Right CRM Solution Provider
Roping in the right CRM solution provider or partner is the crux for successful implementation. Preferably, go with a partner that helps in both implementation as well as pre-implementation strategy. Moreover, it is imperative that your partner puts down all the implementation risks on the table well before you sign on the dotted line.
These are not the only challenges faced during CRM implementation, but these are certainly the top ones. Your partner should educate about all the possible challenges that might hinder a successful CRM implementation. Having a checklist of all the challenges can save a significant amount of money, time and resources as well as helps in successful and company-wide adoption of the new CRM system.
For help in seamless CRM implementation, SMS SAGE to 56767. You can also write to Sage Software Solutions Pvt Ltd at email@example.com