Assessing Your CRM Implementation: Two Questions to Ask Yourself

The relationship between love and hate with CRM is real. Although CRM solutions are widely accepted, they often fall short of promises made during the selection and implementation process and may not live up to the potential they have for generating profitable growth.

There are a lot of horror stories – from overly complicated implementations to poorly planned solutions, “just ask the sales team to put your stuff in there.”

If you want to make more money from your CRM investment, through better adoption or more solid use, these two questions will pave the way.

  1. Can users easily extract information from the CRM solution?

The purpose of a CRM is usually to ensure that accurate data is loaded and retrieved, but the CRM should not act as a place where the data dies; the goal is to store readily available information that helps serve customers and make decisions.

Reporting information, at all levels of the user, is the most important function that a CRM solution plays in an organization.

Marketing may need to know where the leads and clues are in the sales funnel so they can support sales by sending the right message, or the sales team may need to see customer interaction status from other departments, or the leadership team needs to accurately forecast the finances given and balances. and for planning purposes. In all of these scenarios, each department must have timely access to customer, opportunity, and sales information in CRM.

The first key to improving a new or installed CRM solution is therefore to assess what reports each user group needs to make decisions and how easy it is to access those reports.

  1. Does CRM support your sales process or have you adapted your sales process to your CRM needs?

A well-planned CRM solution should guide the entire sales cycle: as more information is collected and the relationship is built, the sales team must nurture the leader, potential customer, or customer step by step along the sales journey, along with the CRM solution.

Each company has its own unique sales process – steps that guide the potential customer through initial contact, quotation, sales order, and delivery. Many companies have a different sales process for each product they sell, the customer base they serve, and the sales cycle they face in the market.

An easy way to start the mapping process is to bring together a representative group of the sales team and ask what happens when they receive instructions. Document the answers (positive and negative) and keep asking “What is happening now?” until you reach a customer satisfied with the delivery of your product or service.

Through this interactive process, you’ll learn what customer data is needed for each sales interaction so you can move on to the next step. For example, do you need to collect information about a customer’s current environment before making a price, estimate, or proposal for your product or service?

It should also be clear at what points in the process that additional and necessary information and reports are available for the company to provide customer service or make other decisions.