CRM implementations – avoiding the pitfalls
By Paul Field – C.O.O. @ Improved Apps
CRM implementations can be tricky – but it needn’t be
No matter which project planning methodology you look at for solution implementation, at some point there will be some steps that say ‘training and communication’ or ‘education’. This tends to happen after the backbreaking work of the implementation and in the slight lull before it goes live. Implementing a Saas-based CRM solution is no different in this respect.
Precisely what happens at this stage differs widely depending on the organisation involved: At the top of the tree are enterprises with specialist training departments who have diligently prepared content for on-line/classroom or guide-based education. Then comes the non-specialist ‘training as a side-line’ where some poor unfortunate has to take it on in addition to their day job. Bypassing a few other levels of lip service we then arrive at the ‘throw it over the wall and see what happens’ school of thought.
Time passes and everything goes live and the users start to use their applications in anger. Even if the training had been at the upper end of the spectrum described, the chances are that the users will have forgotten exactly what it is they are supposed to do or didn’t quite understand in the first place. There are then the fields and processes that don’t come up very often and might not be encountered until quite some time after training, in which case there is every probability that both memory and notes fail.
Avoid CRM implementation mayhem and the blame game
A couple of months later and the organisation is in a state of some despair: Sales ops are nearing melt-down as a result of the number of ‘how-to’ calls they are receiving and simply don’t have enough hours in the day to make the large volumes of data corrections required; system admins are over-loaded with requests for new reports (most of which are exception reporting) or process simplification; users don’t really know what they are doing and are fed up with being policed by sales ops, whilst management are seriously stressed and starting to think they’ve made a big mistake and are looking for somebody to blame.
Most enterprises get past this crisis point with lots of time, effort and money, but still the reputation of the project is damaged and the participants are close to a breakdown.
Deliver content at the right time, to the right person, in the right place, in the right context
This is the point at which Improved Apps tends to encounter prospects. Organisations facing these challenges have learned from their mistakes and completely understand the need for improved capabilities that inform users and communicate key changes. They happily grab at the fact that we can deliver information at the right time, to the right person, in the right place and in the right context without bombarding users with a host of irrelevant information. They are delighted that we can allow them to transfer the knowledge that already exists with their organisation directly to their end-users without them needing to search for it. They are even happier when they realise that they can be up and running communicating change with Improved Noticeboard within hours, and can realistically populate the important fields and objects with essential support using Improved Help within days.
Prevention is better than cure
It comes as a constant surprise, therefore, that organisations that have the greatest need and are in the best position to benefit are those that seem to want to defer any action until they have reached the crisis phase. The delta created by change (an implementation, a roll-out to additional orgs., new release or merger/separation of orgs.) is precisely the point where the tools can help most. It is surely far better to prevent the issues (that will inevitably rear their ugly heads) by putting in the solutions that Improved Apps offer rather than waiting until they have become problems and then set about trying to cure them.
And why not give us a call to discover how our tools will enable quick and easy knowledge transfer to ensure a speedy and successful implementation of Salesforce.
But don’t take our word for it…Find out what our satisfied customers have to say about our solutions.