Customer Acquisition Blog

The Difference Between Owning a CRM System and Using a CRM System

Using a hosted CRM system is easy. Convincing your agents and employees to actually use is often another matter entirely.

Failure to adopt is a real and common issue for businesses attempting to adopt CRM. Agents often ignore the new system and continue to do things the old way, with paper and pen, because they are comfortable with that and uncomfortable with change.

This isn’t a new idea unfortunately. It’s a well known issue that many businesses have dealt with and many more will have to deal with. How well made the CRM system is won’t matter if  no one in the company actually uses it.

Creating accounts and changing settings may be easy enough but after all that comes the battle to win your employees over.

There are some ways to help ease your company’s transition from your old methods to a new CRM system.

The most important aspect may be to ensure the system is fully operational before going live with it.

It’s important to train and prepare  your agents who will be using the new system. Understanding how the tools work will also benefit your agents, as they will work faster and more efficiently if they fully understand the software tools they are to use.

When switching to a new system it’s important (if it applies to your business) that compensation aspects are clearly understood. If there are targets to be hit or other special compensation to be doled out, the new system should accommodate such aspects.

Data entry is another potential landmin. Your front line CRM users are sales and marketing staff, not data entry clerks, but typically they will have to do much of the task of getting data into your CRM system.

It’s important to keep the data load as light as you can on your sales and marketing types. When designing the system, decide what information you need and make sure you only collect it once. As much as possible, use check boxes, radio buttons and similar tools to collect information rather than requiring the data to be entered by typing.

It’s also important that the data be as clean as possible so it won’t have to be re-entered. Establish a standard or common practices, so that all records created by differing agents can be easily understood by anyone.

The best ways to push CRM adoption are education and encouragement but at some point you may have to put your foot down. Make it clear that reports and other documents not prepared with the CRM system are not acceptable. Your users will either have to do the work in the CRM system to start or copy it over into the CRM system before handing it in.

If you want all the benefits of a shiny new CRM system you have to make sure your employees will actually use it first.

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