A CRM system is central to your organisation’s operations. Or at least it should be.
Organisations can sleepwalk into a state where their CRM system no longer matches their requirements and is proving more of a hindrance than a facilitator to your operations. But how do you know? Here are some of signs it’s time to move to a better CRM system:
It’s a Barrier To wider Business Systems Integration
A CRM system is often one of the first solutions that an organisation gets in place as it starts pushing for growth. But it’s not the only one. Organisations may go on to get marketing automation solutions, HR platforms, analytics solutions, field service automation tools and many more.
If your CRM system can’t integrate with these wider business tools, your data will sit in a silo and potentially slow down operations. A better CRM system can help you work across all platforms, sharing data between them.
If It Doesn’t Work The Way You Do, It’s Time To Change To A Better CRM System
Matching the way you work comes in a variety of guises. To start with, most CRM systems come with a certain process for working but are often customisable to fit the way your work. If your solution isn’t that flexible, then it’s time to move on to a better CRM system.
There are also more practical ways of assessing if your CRM is really working for you. Modern CRM solutions allow much greater flexibility of working. So if your sales team are having to return to the office to log information because they can’t access your CRM from their mobile phone (or more generally on the go), it’s time to think hard if it’s still the right system for you.
It’s Difficult To Support Or Secure
By their nature, CRM systems are sophisticated applications. It’s therefore not uncommon to require some element of external support for your system. But if the required expertise is increasing in scarcity – and cost as a result – it could be a sign it’s time for a better, more commonly used CRM solution.
And if you’re not aware of any new security patching having been made available for your CRM system for a while, it’s definitely time to move to a new solution. Cybercrime threats are evolving all the time and CRM systems are a big target based on the data they hold. Reputable providers will be watching out for threats all the time, and often deploying patches for them automatically. If your provider isn’t doing the same, it’s definitely time to start asking questions
Management Can’t Access - Or Understand – Data From Your CRM System
A major benefit of a CRM system is supposed to be its ability to enhance business intelligence. This is severely hampered if management and decision-makers can’t access, or easily understand, the information it’s presenting.
This isn’t shouldn’t necessarily be about providing management with in-depth training about using your CRM system (though from our experience some managers could benefit from this). Instead, it’s more of a consideration of how easy it is to access the data you need to run your operations in a smarter way.
Whether through indigenous reports or through add-ons, there should also be a way to present data so that trends can be easily (even instantaneously). With modern capabilities, outputting to a spreadsheet is simply not good enough.
If that’s all your CRM system can do (after you’ve struggled to access the data at all) it’s definitely time for a new CRM system
If It’s Not Making The Job Easier
One of the most obvious signs it’s time for a better CRM system is simply that your users have stopped using your existing system. This is typically the sign that it’s not working for them and the way they need it to.
Often it will start with what appears to be corner-cutting: certain tasks aren’t completed fully or fields left empty. This can be down to the attitude of the individual user, but if you’re seeing it across an entire team – or wider - then there’s cause for concern.
Eventually, users will try to work around your CRM system. They’ll create their own processes or store information separately in emails or spreadsheets. This is a huge potential problem long term: even if you replace your CRM system, you can face a battle to break bad habits. Then, not only will your organisation need to invest in a better CRM system, but it’ll need to think carefully about properly onboarding users and training them to get them out of bad habits.
Moving to A Better CRM System
If you’re seeing the above signs, a change of CRM system should be added to your organisation’s long-term agenda.
There’s a wide range of solutions available. However, finding one tailored to your working requirements (whether sales, marketing, field service or other) is a more logical approach than picking a generalised, catch-all solution.
Akita is a developer of Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM solutions. This market-leading application offers a wide range of modules tailored to specific business requirements. Our consultants will be happy to provide a demonstration of how Dynamics 365 can offer a better CRM solution to your system.
For more information on Dynamics 365 or to arrange a demonstration please get in touch: