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CRM: the Good, the Bad, and the Unexpected

77,300 companies use just one of the leading customer relationship management solutions. Statistics like this show us CRM software is a popular tool to help companies manage their contacts.

How effective is new CRM software?

Unfortunately, many CRM platforms fail. Forrester conducted research on the effectiveness of CRM software and found a failure rate of 47%.Research found less than half of businesses using CRM agreed the functionality matched what they were promised. Forrester surveyed this same group specifically about the problems they encountered. They found 30 to 40 percent of the problems were due to the product. The majority of the problems were related to the people, the process, and the strategy for executing the product. William Band, Forrester Vice President and Analyst says “We found a lot of people acknowledging that they didn’t have the skills that they needed to implement the solution.”

Understanding the problem areas and needs of your organization are imperative to the success of a new CRM system. Destination CRM says “Invest some time up front to understand the level of support [employees] need to sell more effectively, and then find the right class of software to meet those needs.”

Why do companies invest in CRM software?

According to Direct Marketing News, many companies invest to help them maximize productivity, increase their capacity to manage more sales opportunities, and increase their effectiveness with consistent best practices. But what if the sales team doesn’t have the skills to sell? Will new software help them achieve these goals? Will your customer service reps be able to provide better service? Partially.

CRM software is up and running. Now what?

Instead of solely introducing new software, consider weaving the functionality of the system with customer serviceand sales skills.As part of your planning process, develop a training schedule to launch following software implementation. In addition to training field service staff, invest in telesales training and customer service trainingso representatives are equipped with the right skills to serve your customers.

Envision what your employees could do with top of the line software AND training. Implement one without the other, and meeting original purchase objectives becomes difficult.

Clearly, CRM software is a popular tool. See how training can help make it a popular and SUCCESSFUL tool to help your company reach sales and service goals. 

 

Sarah Hedayati is passionate about providing customers the best experience possible. She works for Impact Learning Systems http://www.impactlearning.com/solutions/training-programs/, the leader in customer service skills training and consulting. Sarah is also an author for Impact Learning Systems' customer service and sales blog http://www.impactlearning.com/blog/ Customer service is all about the positive experience you provide!

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