Every year, I take 250 to 300 calls from Forrester clients. The vast majority of these calls are from executives embroiled in the process of trying to select the right CRM technology solution to support their business strategy. From these conversations, I have distilled a set of decision criteria to help you quickly cut through the CRM tech vendor underbrush.
Ability to meet your specific business requirements. You have to know what business outcomes you are trying to achieve, and define the business capabilities that you need to support, before you seriously consider investing in a CRM software solution. Although the core capabilities of leading CRM software vendors are quite similar, the companies I hear from still place a very high importance on the solution meeting the functional and technology criteria that are specific to their needs. Can the vendor meet your use-case requirements?
Ease of use for front-line workers. My clients expect CRM software to demonstrate the capability to make people more fruitful in their work, and this is predicated on how easy the solution is to use. Good usability encourages user adoption. Is the solution UI modern and adaptable to diverse role-based requirements?
Capability to provide advanced analytic abilities. My clients place a high value on CRM vendors' ability to provide analytic tools to better understand customer behavior and make insightful customer-facing decisions using the myriad customer data collected. Analytics are the key to unlocking the value in CRM applications. Does the vendor have powerful and easy-to-use business intelligence capabilities?
For many of my clients, 2009 was a difficult year as they struggled in response to the sudden and dramatic downturn in the economy. Although many CRM technology projects were deferred or cancelled last year, I see this trend being strongly reversed in 2010. Every day I get calls from companies large small who tell me that they now releasing funds to invest in improving their customer-facing business processes neglected during the past 18 months.
The underlying trends driving the need for effective and efficient customer management processes have not disappeared. In fact, the need for companies to effectively engage with their customers has never been more important. Locking in customer loyalty through deeper engagement and differentiated experiences will continue as critical priorities, but navigating the complex CRM solution vendor landscape and organizing projects for success will continue to be challenging. In 2010, you must focus on choosing the best opportunities for quick wins carefully, spend wisely on the right CRM solutions, and manage project risk. Take advantage of Forrester data, methods, and tools to capitalize on the improving economic climate to drive top-line growth.
I have designed this webinar offer you a roadmap to the specific Forrester data, techniques, and tools that you can immediately put to use to implement our six-step methodology for CRM success.
1. Understand the customer of the future
2. Define the right CRM strategy and priorities
3. Build a rock-solid business case
4. Risk-proof your project
5. Resolve customer data management dilemmas
6. Negotiate the right software pricing and licensing agreements
Here is the link to the registration page. You do not have to be a Forrester client to join in.