5 Major Signs your CRM Implementation is Headed South (and not for a holiday)
So, you took the leap and you decided to get a CRM. High five! You made a great decision and here’s to working smarter and not harder. So everything was cruising along just great until suddenly, you started feeling like your CRM wasn’t churning out miracle results that you were told it would do and now your business is stagnant, or worse, it’s going backwards. So what’s going on? Before you flip the table, throw the laptop or curse out anyone who ever recommended a CRM to you, evaluate your situation and see if you fall into any of these categories.
Data not accurate - Oops, wrong customer?
Is your customer data up to date and perfectly accurate? If you have touched base with the customer frequently, it should be, but if you have left your customer dangling in the wind for some time, chances are their details have changed, or even more inconvenient, someone else has taken over their email. Make sure your customer information is accurate otherwise you could be sending a great email to Simon and Jarred gets it instead and wonders, “who’s this idiot who can’t even get my name right, no way am I doing business with them”. Don’t be that person, check your information before you try your sales pitch.
CRM not tailored for your business – It not a one size fits all
Is your CRM actually equipped to deal with your industry? If you have a massive, high end company that deals in thousands of products and services but the CRM you got is designed to handle a small business on an even smaller budget you’re going to have a problem. I say that lightly, what I really mean is you are going to have a catastrophe on your hands. Make sure when you select your CRM that you ask all the right questions including “does this suit my needs”. Sometimes we get caught up in the fluffy stuff, the pretty stuff and the cool stuff and forget about the practicality and the usability of something. That can be time wasting and damaging.
CRM will not fix your broken processes. Fix your processes first.
This one here is the killer – your sales process. Is your sales process obsolete? What’s your conversion ratio and how do you achieve it? There is no sense throwing technology at a broken process and hoping to god that it will make everything better. CRM’s are an automated system not a fairy godmother. If your sales process needs you to use pen and paper or a typewriter, use it. Don’t start automating a system that doesn’t work as you will just make everything confusing and messy and feel frustrated that you aren’t getting the results you were promised.
You are not clear on what business problem(s) CRM is solving. Define the problems to be fixed
Okay, while you may have jumped from the plane and didn’t die, did you notice it takes them an hour to get you into the sky? That’s because risks should be managed just in case something goes awry. You wouldn’t jump from the plane without a parachute, so don’t try to jump into a situation where you haven’t done the research or foreseen potential troubling outcomes that can be a costly mistake (maybe not your life, but the life of your business could be at stake). CRM’s can’t measure business benefits unless you do your research and point them in the direction they should be going based on measurable outcomes and plans to manage risks that go south.
Implementation is not a once off – It’s a continuous whole of business process evolution
Another massive flaw in implementing a CRM is only seeing it as software. Your CRM is much more than that, it’s a part of your business, it should become a part of your strategy. CRM’s are yes, a piece of software, but their capabilities and their features are what you bought it for and why you deployed it in your business. Over time, you can make changes to your CRM, small or big to benefit the growing and changing of your company and your people. Ask your staff what they want to see happen, take on their idea and evolve your CRM with you. It can work with you to ensure better selling process, more intimate and personal customer relationship processes, automation, reporting and innovating. It is your strategy backbone so use it as such.