lunes, septiembre 04, 2017

Rethinking CRM

A CRM application is an invaluable tool that helps to increase Sales efficiency and accuracy of sales figures: forecast, pipeline, and Sales KPIs and productivity figures. Also Scoreboard is fed by CRM reporting by sales force. It seems all are advantages and every company should have a CRM in place, but… why do most companies do not have it or have it partially implemented?
Main reason is because it is used as a control tool, generating rejection in the sales people, enormous difficulties in the start-up and follow-up of these tools and finally useless information because of lack of collaboration coming from commercial team. Sales managers drown commercials in reporting tasks: they want to know how many visits they've made this week, what is doing competition and their figures, what happens with that important deal ... And the commercials themselves start hiding information to keep their status, not to waste so much time on backoffice tasks and to avoid annoying questions from their bosses.
A great tool created for sales becomes a controlling tool, and it was born dead. And that's why many companies don't have a CRM deployed.
So, what can we do to change this situation? A CRM is a tool needed in each organization to manage it efficiently: operations needs sales forecasts to produce products and buy enough raw material and resources, Finance team needs know what is going to be sold and how to finance it, CEO needs the big picture, etc.
On the other hand ... Who provides information to account managers about how to perform their work better and more efficiently? Everything is delegated to the Sales director, but the commercials would prefer that a tool advise them in the day to day, to be better professionals and more effective in their work. A tool that helps them to know what are the tasks more urgent and important in the day to day, which clients should visit today, which are at risk of loss, how real is the pipeline, what opportunities are at risk of being lost, what prospects are the most suitable to visit...  In other words, what should be done every day to become a better sales professional. It is obvious that the perception of the sales force towards the CRM would change substantially and they would start using it because it really helps them.
A new generation of CRMs must be put in place, combining practicality for commercials and artificial intelligence with Bigdata to guide them in the difficult daily task of building company revenue, the most important part of any company's income statement report. We begin to see some movements on the market, such as the acquisition of Linkedin by Microsoft or the interest of others in Social Media companies, the new source of data that should be used by these tools. Who will shoot first? Who bet?

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