Jumpstart Your CRM in 8 Easy Steps
Jumpstart Your CRM
You’ve invested a lump sum, or are paying a monthly fee per user for a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, yet you’re still not receiving a tangible return on your investment. You have some sales people who use the CRM, but just as many who don’t; at least not properly. The data inside your CRM is a mixture of good, incomplete and wrong, which means the reports and forecasts you run are never accurate or even worse misleading. Well you’re not alone, as most companies would be the first to admit the day to day use of their CRM is a long way from 100% perfect. Given the importance that Sales Management places on CRM to do everything from Sales Process, through Sales Pipeline Management to Sales Forecasting this is surely an area for improvement that most companies should look at. Most CRM providers will makes various claims such as higher conversion rates and shorter sales cycles but even they would admit that you must attain a level of best practice before any benefits kick in. So here is our simple 8 step process to Jumpstart your CRM.
1) Hold a meeting and identify the specific areas of concern and improvements required. Sales people may well have different concerns from sales management and if genuine they should not be ignored.
2) Create a CRM team and give them the authority and responsibility for the improvements identified in step 1.
3) Develop and create realist CRM Goals, including timelines and a strategy to achieve those goals. Don’t forget to confirm, document and communicate the benefits of the goals to all concerned so they are engaged and on board.
4) Plan for success by documenting examples of best practice, testing the improvements on a subset of accounts and or records and collate the evidence of benefits before rolling out to the wider group.
5) Communicate the new improvement plans and benefits to the wider group via newsletters, emails, lunch & learns, videos, intranet, Yammer & Chatter etc. Create a buzz and make sure this is “front of mind” for all concerned. Create some competitions and reward success.
6) Hold an official launch and empower the Sales People to take action by removing any obstacles. Get individual commitment from everyone to the improvement and make sure everyone understands their responsibilities. Provide training and coaching where required and tie performance into sales peoples personal review process.
7) Generate and document some short term wins and spread the good news like a virus to encourage the advocates of the improvements, and discourage the detractors.
8) Consolidate the wins, and hold everyone accountable to the new best practices so the changes are embedded. Set new Quality Assurance to ensure old habits don’t return.
Unfortunately most companies trying to make improvements fail, and then accept a satisfactory level of under performance. They therefore never realize the full potential ROI or other benefits CRM can deliver. In most cases we find the quality and accuracy of the reports and dashboards in CRM have a direct correlation to the quality and level of professionalism of the overall sales force. Good sales people know the importance of keeping accurate, up to date records, and are happy to do so as they know it will help them sell more. CRM is an essential part and one of the foundations of every successful selling organization, so addressing any concerns you may have are vitally important. Get started today and Jumpstart your CRM.
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