(Page 2 of 2)
Perez noted that many reps do not have confidence that the information they put into a centralized CRM will be used effectively or appropriately, putting their personal relationships at risk. For that reason, many reps still use the old-school method of a paper file or day planner with handwritten entries to manage their customer activities and relationships.
Of course, many reps now also use their smartphones and laptops to manage their customer contacts, Perez said, and that introduces a host of other problems for managers trying to implement uniform sales and service procedures.
Other problems emerge, Perez said, when "technology-constrained companies try to modify their in-house technology for CRM purposes because they do not want to invest in a stand-alone CRM [system]." Sometimes this occurs because of concerns that stand-alone CRM programs will not be compatible with other programs already in use.
A Deeper Problem?
Mitch Lieberman is vice president of strategy at Sword Ciboodle, a company that develops modular CRM software used by contact centers worldwide. He sees a deeper problem: CRM has come to mean so many things to so many people that expectations are out of whack from the get-go.
It might sound obvious or overly simplistic, but forget the software for a moment and focus on what it means to actually have a relationship with a person, and then that person becomes a customer, Lieberman said.
You have to ask, "What do they need before the sale and what do they need after the sale?" and focus on building an actual relationship.
To be successful, CRM systems need to put these relationships first, serving as a central repository for all the information salespeople need to best manage their customer relations.
Posted: 2012-05-03 @ 12:50pm PT
Wow Jennifer you really hit the nail on the head. My company is now in the process of implementing a CRM system and all of the aforementioned have cropped up. I don't think anyone considered all of the issues that would throw a major wrench into the adoption process. Great Article, Thank you.