Failure to Launch: Why Some CRM Deployments Fall Short

Failure To Launch: Why Some CRM Deployments FailFrom time to time, a CRM deployment fails to meet the goals of the company. When that happens, the project is abandoned and the time and money spent on it is lost.

The business may attempt another CRM deployment, or they may forego the many benefits of a CRM system. While this doesn’t happen often, it is frequent enough to merit attention.

The success or failure of any launch is decided long before the launch date. Following the right procedures and having detailed plans for success at the outset will help ensure that a CRM deployment gets off the launch pad. When a company fails to follow the correct procedures, the odds of success diminish greatly.

Here are a few key areas where companies make mistakes during a CRM rollout:

Failure to Recognize the Problem

One critical mistake that businesses make is not recognizing the growing limitations of their existing CRM system or contact manager. They may be clinging to an outdated system, despite increasing costs and decreasing usefulness. When a CRM system becomes outdated, requires too many resources to manage, or loses utility, it’s time to move on to a better system.

See Also: The Ever Growing Costs of Hanging Onto a Legacy CRM System

Failure to Plan Appropriately

Once the decision has been made to move to a new CRM system, adequate planning becomes crucial. Decision makers need a detailed plan that outlines every step of the process– from vetting vendors to training users. Any details that are left out of the plan will quite likely end up being stumbling blocks during the implementation.

See Also: What’s Your Organization’s CRM Buying Process?
See Also: A Step-Based Approach to the CRM Buying Process

Failure to Migrate the Right Data

When businesses move to a new system, there’s a tendency to try and take all of their data with them. This often includes long outdated information that is no longer relevant to the prospects or customers. That data bogs down the system, saps time from the implementation staff, confuses users, and serves no real purpose.

See Also: Are You a CRM History Pack Rat?
See Also: 14 Components of a Successful CRM Data Migration

Failure to Manage Expectations

Before moving forward with a CRM launch, businesses need to realistically examine what they expect from the system, and what the system is capable of. Unrealistic expectations will lead to almost instant dissatisfaction with the system. Knowing the benefits and limitations of a CRM system before deployment will help keep users from becoming disenchanted.

See Also: CRM is Not Your Servant
See Also: Enterprise CRM: What is it and Does Your Business Need it?

Failure to Adopt

When users don’t adopt the system, the system can’t succeed. No matter how well a CRM rollout is planned and executed, it’s made or broken on user adoption. If the end users aren’t entering data into the system, it becomes the software equivalent of a paperweight. More than a few otherwise successful CRM implementations have broken down at this point.

See Also: CRM User Adoption: Directive, Not Discretionary
See Also: 10 Ways to Increase Salesperson CRM Adoption

Mission Control

A successful CRM implementation is built on a series of interconnected, interrelated steps. These steps build, one atop the other, to create a successful whole.

It’s very rare that a CRM implementation will fail due to one giant error. The devil is in the details, and one missed detail can lead to disaster. Fortunately, following the proper steps allows a business to avoid many mistakes, and minimize the impact of others. Like most business pursuits, it’s all about starting with a strong launchpad, and building up from there.

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