By guest blogger, Ralph Garte of Timespare in Germany who has been working with the SageCRM for over 20 years, helping SMEs with the implementation of business solutions, as well as the successful development of businesses and business ideas, to help to make their customers' business more successful.
How is CRM in 5 days supposed to work?!
I will try to explain how this is possible and how to achieve success with CRM based on my experience in the real world.
Everyone needs CRM, this sentence is known to everyone. Companies, users, manufacturers, and sellers. But when we ask why customers do not have CRM or ask what their experiences have been with CRM, the feedback is often very sobering. Either the expected benefit is not in proportion to the investment, or often the benefits are not recognisable and, sometimes, the implementation has taken too long or has not been completed. Customers sometimes report they now have an additional “workload” due to an additional tool - that is not or only poorly integrated with the existing solutions, technical problems in the simplest requirements (e.g., filing e-mails) and the associated low user acceptance. Customers also discover that the quality of the existing data (typically ERP data/only companies, no contacts, etc.) makes it not usable within the CRM system.
Original visions for CRM use such as marketing campaigns, sales and service thus become a distant prospect. But actually, it’s not really difficult. If we understand our customers’ business and offer a solution at eye level, everything suddenly looks a bit different and easier. Let’s assume that our potential customers already use accounting in their company as is the case with almost all of our customers. This means there is already a very important back-office solution in place, with data and processes that CRM can work deal with.
Furthermore, in every company a significant part of the workload is spent on processing e-mails, which is the usual way of communication today, both internally and externally. This is not really a new insight, but these are two elementary issues whose successful solution generates disproportionate effects and is the basis for all further measures. And every client assumes that this is exactly what works smoothly. In reality, however, it unfortunately doesn’t always work out like that at all. As mentioned briefly above, this is exactly what fails due to either disproportionate implementation costs in adaptations and integrations and/or a non-existent success strategy.
Remember, we are dealing with Sage customers here, these are usually small and medium sized companies, not large corporations with their own CRM project group and a big budget. But almost always with Sage ERP and this a big advantage for our customers! We can take these foundations and work to deliver exactly what our customers expects, at a reasonable budget, in record time and with a guarantee of success
This article was originally written for The CRM Connect Magazine