Before getting into a CRM challenge, let’s ask yourself this question: what do you expect a tool will change in your business?
If you feel your business is fine as it is, great, then you probably would enjoy long holidays in the Caribbean without bothering with a CRM.
If you think your business is struggling and bankruptcy is an option, then you wouldn’t just rely on a CRM to save it.
So probably, your business is going well, but could go better and you are just not totally satisfied with the trend of growth and you feel you need to invest to boost it.
Adopt a CRM is a move that many companies are considering, the tool is finally considered vital for business efficiency and productivity. So, you are in the right place, stepping into a CRM challenge to give your business a boost.
Probably you already know, CRM can be a bit more complex than what they sell. You better prepare your company to face the challenge of implementing a digital transformation, maybe just starting from the sales process management. When it reaches its full capacity, then you can also extend and connect other functions and business processes. Just being aware of the complexity of digital transformation may help to be prepared for it.
Here we have four tips to help you to deal with your CRM challenge:
1) Make Sure You Choose a CRM that Works For You.
Vendors are competing to make you believe that their CRM is simple, the simplest, the most simplest ever… You just subscribe and go. This is only partly true. Let’s say that each solution is different and everything depends on what you plan to achieve.
Small businesses rarely can benefit from systems used by huge banks for instance. To find out the right balance for each business, one way is to start with the business model.
B2B or B2C are two different approaches on markets that require different processes and, definitely, different tools. Budget and timing are also important, you can have limited running cost (subscription) using a platform.
Low Coding DB for instance like Ninox, but you have to consider long and more expensive design and implementation stages. Or you can use a prebuilt framework like Pipedrive, accepting a higher recurring cost, but a much faster implementation stage. The former has more flexibility and the latter has an environment developed for B2B and a certain degree of flexibility.
If you instead have a B2C business model then Hubspot or Getresponse might be the right options for you. It depends how familiar you are with digital tools. But really each business, each company can require a different solution, that’s why we help teams in getting through the complexity of choosing.
To sum it up – How to Choose a CRM:
Type of business
Value per transaction
Frequency of sales
Complexity of the Sales process
- Future developments
2) Plan the adoption as an agile project
Be aware that implementing a software solution is always tricky, if you are familiar with IT logic and tools you already know it. But if you are not so accustomed or you are simply too busy running your business, you are better off outsourcing the core tasks of the project and nominating a Project Manager to run it.
Designing the outcome for your organisation is the very first task: what do you want to see when the CRM will be up and running? What impact do you expect from the CRM adoption on team effectiveness? Be sure your Project Manager is capable with Agile, then you can start writing down your requirements.
Agile is important because you will see how many times requirements will change or new features will be added, be able to proceed per sprints, on an incremental basis, check and enhance the outcome several times before the project will end.
3) Plan and design sales process well before choosing the tool
First define what processes you may improve or facilitate with the digital transformation, then design processes and tasks to be implemented in the CRM, keep them simple and straightforward, adding features and functions will always be possible.
Once the plan is completed then set the requirements for the digital tool, the digital environment should facilitate processes that exist in real-life. One of the biggest CRM challenge is the design of the sales processes in B2B. While in B2C it is probably the understanding of subtle consumers’ trends.
4) Avoid a lack of Adoption
Boost adoption from any company’s stakeholder, creating routine and assessment over processes based on data. Keep tracking people’s usage of CRM and what can be done to boost productivity. Leverage CRM to enhance the company’s culture about data management. Set relevant standards of performance by reasonable KPIs for managed processes. When a digital solution becomes the standard it will improve with usage and will support efficiency enhancement in processes management.
Avoid shortcuts based on utilisation of easier-to-use tools (like Excel). There aren’t difficult and easy things, there are only things we know how to do and things that we do not know how to do.
Yes, CRM can be a challenge, projects have no certainty of success, this is why planning carefully in advance is vital. If 70% of the CRM implementation projects fail, one important reason relies on lack of process design well before the tool selection.