Does-your-CRM-need-a-health-check

Does your CRM need a health check?

by James Kuhn

So you just bought and implemented a brand new CRM software for your sales team. It’s up, it’s running perfectly, there are no technical issues. You’re excited to see what this new system is going to do for the workflow and productivity of your team. There’s just one problem—no one is using it. It’s time for a health check!

What you really need to look at when it comes to the health of your CRM goes beyond mere functionality—you need to look at the user adoption of the system to gauge effectiveness. You want to make sure that it is actually working for you and your team and building value for your business.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What am I looking to get out of my CRM?
  • You had a vision when you started. But has that vision been fully realized?
  • What mechanisms are you leveraging to ensure that the CRM system put in place is being fully utilized?
  • Have your end users been engaged or have you taken a temperature check?

If you are experiencing low user adoption of your CRM, here are a few trouble areas to look out for:

 

Reporting

It can often be frustrating for sales teams to make sense of the mass amount of data that come through the CRM. They know it’s there—they just don’t know how to properly harness the power of it in order to be able to build accurate pipeline numbers. Identifying the proper dashboard tools that will enable your team to see predictive insights in a simple graphical format will increase both efficiency and productivity.

 

Ineffective scalability

A 2013 Gartner report found that nearly half of all sales team’s CRM software licenses go unused. While there is a laundry list of reasons that this might happen, the ability for your team to effectively utilize the robust suite of functions packaged into the software is one of the top grievances. As an executive wanting to drive efficiency within the organization, it is all too easy to slap on every widget available with the software. However, in reality, this is creating too complex of a system, which can actually make simple tasks even harder.

 

Overly complex UI

Aside from the myriad functions associated with a CRM software, one of the main issues with its adoption is simply that users find the interface complicated. There are a few questions you need to ask yourself when evaluating the viability of your interface. First and foremost: is it user-friendly? Could a person unfamiliar with the software sit down and easily navigate the interface? Is the software driving value into the business or stifling the user’s’ productivity? An employee’s time should be spent on the sales of your product, not deciphering cryptic software.

Do you identify with any of the above issues? If so, it might be time to look into how you might resolve these software maladies within your organization. Ultimately, the solutions all come down to communication.

 

Bring the users into the implementation

There simply is no point in adopting a new process if no one is able or willing to use it. In order to make the best of your new CRM solution, you need to bring in the opinions of the people who are going to be using it.  Don’t just involve the executive team in the implementation—empower your organization to decide what processes within the CRM are going to help them operate more efficiently. Allow them to collaborate in the planning and implementation stages, giving them a sense of ownership in the process. Establishing a governance board to execute oversight will provide the various business units to collaborate, implement, and safeguard against any cross function issues.

 

Understanding process flows that drive value

You need to have a keen understanding of the revenue roadmap: what drives profit into the company? From there, it will be easy to pick and choose which tools within the CRM will be valuable to the business. Again, user input will be crucial to gaining insight into the selling process flow.

 

Meet with dedicated CRM Strategists

If you still aren’t entirely certain how to make the most out of your new CRM adoption, even with all the above tips in mind, it might be wise to bring in a professional CRM strategist. A CRM expert will be able to survey your situation and identify key elements of the software that will propel productivity and revenue into your operation.

A CRM solution is a vital component that can streamline your sales team’s process of selling. However, it isn’t just a plug-and-play piece of technology—it requires deep analysis of your internal operations to make the software work best for you.

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