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CRM Hacks

Three ways to monitor the success of your CRM implementation

February 4, 2018

A CRM project can fail for many reasons from poor user-adoption rates to inadequate training for end-users. There’s no guarantee that a CRM implementation will be smooth so, with that in mind, it’s important to keep a close eye on the process. However, the good news is that there are measures which you can put in place to help you stay on track! Once your CRM implementation is underway, you can use the following steps to monitor the scale of your success and avoid any potential pitfalls along the way.

1. Return to your change management plan

Use your change management plan to crosscheck your CRM implementation against the following categories:

  • User training and engagement
  • Data migration
  • Testing

Are you meeting the expectations you set out in each category? In your change management plan you should have also outlined the strengths and weaknesses of your CRM implementation team. It’s advisable to check in with key stakeholders during your CRM implementation because their feedback could prevent any unnecessary or costly stumbling blocks. If possible your CRM go-live should be staggered over a number of stages with different members of the workforce. This will give you the chance to see how groups of employees are responding per subset, rather than as a whole. Communication and clarity with everyone involved will help all staff adjust to the change as well as highlight any issues that end-users feel need addressing.

2. Keep track of hidden costs that might impact your implementation budget

Another way to monitor the success or your CRM implementation project is look at ongoing costs compared to ROI. Often project managers don’t consider the full extent of implementation costs and their CRM budget only accounts for obvious expenditure. You should aim to include everything from consultancy fees to staff overtime to reduced productivity and add a 10% contingency in your initial budget in case of unforeseen circumstances. It’s difficult to determine the exact revenue impact of your CRM but by taking into consideration revenue per user, customer acquisition cost or conversion rate you should be able to get to get a good sense of how to track progress. As well as cash flow there are other metrics which are harder to define numerically for instance, a new CRM could help company culture by encouraging collaborative work. As far as possible you should try to quantify these other considerations.

3. Build a CRM dashboard which pulls out the key data

By setting targets which track against key data you can analyze metrics to get an idea of how successfully your new CRM is performing. It can sometimes be difficult to attribute broader business metrics to your CRM. But if your sales team has increased revenue by a significant percentage since implementation it’s undoubtedly a good sign. If you can demonstrate that sales performance is related to your CRM implementation through call to appointment conversion or email reply-rates then you’re closer to understanding the value it’s adding to your company.

If CRM records are updated quickly and accurately it indicates that users are engaging with the CRM and taking responsibility for managing their own data. For sales reps in particular, keeping CRM data up-to-date should be a priority as it’s integral to lead nurturing and feeds into best practices for prospecting. According to research from CSO Insights less than 40% of CRM projects have full-scale user adoption. A good quality of data input from all your CRM users is essential to the success of your implementation project so a deeper understanding of user-adoption is valuable information.

Lauren Stafford
Lauren Stafford works as a Digital Publishing Specialist at Discover CRM, a platform which gathers together the latest thinking, news, and research about CRM software.

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