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16 reasons for the failure of CRM software

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Inhaltsverzeichnis

  1. Inadequate migration of legacy data
  2. Insufficient implementation and lack of further development of the system
  3. Only partial implementation in certain departments
  4. No communication of benefits – the “why” or “what for” is not communicated
  5. Lack of initial training for basic acceptance – Train-the-Trainer vs. employee training
  6. No ongoing training to develop routine, leading to a lack of confidence in handling
  7. Too close to the standard of the CRM software, and too far from existing processes
  8. Too many software systems still need to be used in parallel
  9. Uncomfortable Outlook integration or other email services
  10. Missing or inadequate help, FAQs, and documentation within the application
  11. No change in leadership, “just” reliance on CRM software
  12. No changed goals
  13. No prior elimination of ballast, just “added on top”
  14. Lack of structuring and prioritizing: What is a prerequisite, what is not?
  15. Long wait times (due to insufficient bandwidth/VPN) for the application
  16. Screen design and user interface lead to lack of user acceptance

The complete list of arguments and criteria, as well as many explanations, can be found here.

Why is the list so long? Is the user experience (UX) missing?

As always, there are many reasons why something can go wrong. It’s not always a single reason. Usually, multiple reasons lead to delays in use, rejection, or even complete failure.

Those who define CRM on a meta-level find terms like strategic CRM, analytical CRM, and operational CRM. Other terms in this context are collaborative CRM and communicative CRM. Acquiring potential customers and retaining existing customers through cross-selling.

Very often, marketing and sales jointly select the solution. The requirements do not always align. However, CRM is collaboration. The application or processes are geared towards the economic success of customer relationships. It’s not about the individual interests of the respective departments.

The topic of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is quite complex. Sometimes very complex. Especially when a company defines CRM as a catch-all solution. The CRM software will not solve everything. It is a tool, not a replacement for leadership or strategic tasks.

CRM systems are often defined as an alibi or fig leaf within a CRM strategy. It also depends on the position of the responsible project manager. In medium-sized companies as well as in large corporations, there is often a tendency to go too big instead of starting small. The CRM system landscape should be built and expanded gradually. The knowledge and ability of the users can grow accordingly. The CRM landscape should be manageable and not become a data behemoth.

And now you might have more questions about “CRM software application”:

Does the product even fit our company, or have we adapted to the software? Do the partners and service providers support us 100%? Have all relevant data been migrated to the new system?

A CRM solution, such as Salesforce, SAP CRM, or Microsoft Dynamics CRM, comes with many modules. All modules should be on the same performance level. Unfortunately, these levels vary too much depending on the company’s requirements, and are therefore generally insufficient. We often favor the best-of-breed solution. This means that from A for addresses to Z for time tracking, several providers can be involved.

For example, after-sales service requires a business intelligence (formerly data mining) tool with artificial intelligence to analyze complaints. Marketing needs the same tool to analyze campaign success. Both departments approach the topic from different perspectives. They should agree on the use of a CRM system.

A particular challenge for a CRM system, which plays an important role in almost every company, is the integration with the ERP system. Does it work smoothly? Does the CRM extend into supply chain management? Good CRM solutions can do that. Is the mobile CRM solution acceptable for all users? Can different mobile devices be used? Can social CRM features be integrated into lead management for marketing? Can both sales and marketing work with the email marketing tool?

The “success” of an implemented CRM software application depends on many factors.

Unfortunately, this question must be answered with YES. We often experience that with the introduction of a CRM system, the company’s goals remain the same. However, the goals are defined for the functional areas. These are often still competing goals. Successful customer relationship management requires a different kind of leadership and modern leadership management. It’s not about expertise in each area, but rather aligning the entire company with goals and customer groups.

And after the introduction of the new software, many think: “Now it will work on its own.” The car doesn’t drive itself either. Every driver needs a license. And the car only runs smoothly if the clutch is properly engaged during gear changes.

Numerous studies on CRM show that CRM systems are not optimally used because employees are often left to their own devices with the new CRM tool. Training and educating employees are often seen as negligible investment blocks and not budgeted according to the needs.

Training and education of marketing and sales on the CRM system are therefore essential for achieving company goals and the return on software investment! Personal, communicative, and process skills should also be trained. The training sessions can be individual or team training. The train-the-trainer approach no longer works with this holistic view. Success requires different approaches. For example, as we described in this article.

We believe that companies and employees can save a lot of energy, time, and money, or release energy, if the new software is:
a) well trained,
b) subsequently practiced, and
c) if reluctant or resistant employees can enjoy coaching if necessary.

The CRM solution or customer relationship management system is not a problem solver, but a tool used to solve problems.

Could it also be due to unchanged leadership and unchanged goals?

Unfortunately, this question must be answered with YES. We often experience that with the introduction of a CRM system, the company’s goals remain the same. However, the goals are defined for the functional areas. These are often still competing goals. Successful customer relationship management requires a different kind of leadership and modern leadership management. It’s not about expertise in each area, but rather aligning the entire company with goals and customer groups.

And after the introduction of the new software, many think: “Now it will work on its own.” The car doesn’t drive itself either. Every driver needs a license. And the car only runs smoothly if the clutch is properly engaged during gear changes.

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