The Benefits of a Strong Customer Support System for CRM Implementations
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a powerful tool utilized by companies to manage interactions with their customers. It provides a central database for customer data and gives businesses the ability to keep track of customer interactions, their preferences, and their needs. CRM can help to streamline communication between a company and its customers, allowing for better customer experience, which can translate into customer loyalty and retention.
However, the implementation of a CRM solution can be a challenge. According to leading industry research analysts, the failure rate of CRM implementations has been significantly higher than that of most other enterprise software for decades. In fact, the failure rate is staggering — reportedly reaching as high as 60%. It is not very uncommon that a big bang go-live of a great CRM Solution is followed by gradual reduction in usage within few months and eventually a complete closure soon after resulting in complete waste of time, money and effort of so many people.
One of the biggest reasons for such failures is zero or insignificant support from the CRM vendor post-implementation. Often, clients miss out on checking this important aspect before selecting a CRM solution. A robust support system is crucial, especially after a successful implementation. This article will highlight what a strong CRM support system is, why it is important, and how you can judge whether your CRM solution provider has it.
Importance of Strong CRM Support System
Clients need to understand the importance of a strong support system post-implementation. It offers several benefits, such as improving adoption and checking for any drop in adoption, providing advice on industry best practices, responding promptly to business change requests, regularly health-checking the implementation to detect early signs of failure, quickly solving usage-related queries and teething problems, and mutual eco-system that benefits both parties.
For example, if a company’s sales team is struggling to adopt a new CRM tool, strong support is crucial in helping to address the issue. Responding promptly to issues and solving them quickly is important to reassure employees and make them feel at ease with using the CRM tool.
Additionally, support teams should not just reactive, but proactive in support clients. For example, regular health-checks of the implementation can detect early signs of failure, allowing organizations to quickly and efficiently fix the issue before it becomes substantial. Regular consultation with clients on industry best practices provides invaluable insights and feedback, which can help vendors to fine-tune their solution and stay ahead of the curve.
Classifications of Support System
Two types of CRM support system are important for strong support after implementation: Account Management Support & Helpdesk Support.
Account Management Support
Account management support acts as a liaison between the vendor and the client, ensuring that the CRM solution is doing what it is supposed to do. They focus on driving adoption and ensuring continuous improvement. Account management support has strong functional expertise, hands-on experience in managing large operations involving a field force, and is knowledgeable about the CRM solution. They interact with client business teams seamlessly, like a consultant, and offer valuable feedback.
Solution expertise is another crucial aspect of account management support. An in-depth understanding of the CRM solution ensures that the account management team knows how to configure the system for successful implementation. This knowledge becomes invaluable when competing for other vendors in the CRM solution space.
Lastly, analytics expertise is critical in account management support. Strong data analytics knowledge helps clients get maximum insight from the field force operations results. Many software implementations are only successful when business stakeholders start seeing actionable insights from the data being captured.
The helpdesk or end-user support team is responsible for resolving all queries reported by the field team in a user-friendly manner. They provide valuable feedback to the Product Management team for user experience improvements. Helpdesk support has three crucial modes of customer support: call support, email support, and chat support.
Call support is the most important mode of support, and toll-free numbers are crucial. Major regional languages should be covered for easy access, and it is a great practice to call back the users after a few days to check if they face any new problem.
Email support allows users to communicate through email. The app interface should allow users to start drafting the email by clicking the helpdesk email id. Even if the helpdesk team doesn't have an immediate answer, it is essential to acknowledge the user's concern and share with them a tentative timeline to resolve their query.
Chat support is an efficient and convenient way to address issues in real-time with round-the-clock access. Robust helpdesk management tools are crucial for efficient management and tracking of support modes like chat, phone and email.
To achieve CRM success, a strong support system from vendors post-implementation is essential. Account management support and helpdesk support are two classifications of support. Account management support helps with driving adoption and providing valuable feedback, while helpdesk support is responsible for addressing all queries reported by the field team. It is crucial to employ a robust helpdesk management tool for efficient management and tracking of support modes.
By following these guidelines, clients will be able to identify a CRM solution provider that has a robust support system which can ensure the success of the CRM implementation. A strong support system will help to ensure that the CRM solution is effectively being used by the organization, resulting in less waste of time, money, and effort, better ROI, and higher customer loyalty and satisfaction.