Why CRM implementations fail
The reasons why there are so few truly successful CRM implementations vary from industry to industry and even one country to another.
I can give you my reasons based on my observations over the last decade. The reasons are in 3 broad groups:
- No clarity on existing process:
- Lack of clarity on expectations.
- Commitment should start from the top- but it does not.
Much before the search for a CRM- either for the first time or to replace an existing system, there must a serious effort to document existing processes. If they need to fit a software – understand what is critical and what is not.
A CRM like Saleswah is a fairly large piece of software with multiple features. Rare is the customer who uses all the features and that is okay. What the successful implementer does is understand how his must have processes will work in the CRM.
Process clarity and expectation setting
Process documentation even if not very formal, is must. Have the internal clarity before you speak to the vendor.
A shortcut that often works, is to ask (as a customer)
- what reports do I need to run and grow my business?
- what data do I need to capture to get those reports?
- how can I make the job easier for my people (who will get me the data)?
Reports and required data: these are self explanatory. Ask these questions and you will be surprised how easy the process for looking for a CRM and getting it to work for you will become.
Leading by example
Now for the boss- the one that needs to drive the implementation.
For the user adoption and implementation to work, the boss needs to use the CRM.
Sounds trivial. But it isn’t. Bosses are busy and they simply are unable to fit the CRM usage into their schedule.
So, here’s what we suggest. If you are the boss and you want the CRM implementation to go smoothly, get your reports ONLY from the CRM. Let it be known to your entire team that they do not need to send you reports separately. You will get your reports from the same source- the CRM.
Tell them you won’t read their forecast reports or funnel health or win-loss reports offline or sent on mail. You will only read it in the CRM.
Have you encountered other issues why CRM implementation/ adoption stalled in your company? What did you do to solve them?