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#1 You hate Sales Reporting

Does Sales reporting show it’s ugly face every Friday afternoon at 3pm? Yes I know that feeling too. But that was my previous life. I used to get that when I worked in Sales organisations that needed some fixing. The good news is, proper reporting can be setup and automated for your company. As soon as you start using automation, people will update Sales opportunities in real time, simply because they cannot afford to have inaccurate reports sent to management.

#2 Each marketing campaign starts with aggregating Excel spreadsheets

Sound familiar? If you are scrambling to patch together bits and pieces of data from various sources for your campaigns, you need to rethink what isn’t working. One client I was working for would extract data from CRM into an email automation tool, but the valuable insights from the results of the campaign stayed with the email automation supplier. The challenge isn’t necessarily technical – in this instance, there was an integration between the CRM provider and the email tool which worked fine, but my client wasn’t using it properly: data was being duplicated and not synched back into the master database. Organisation that have successfully implemented CRM have won over the hearts and minds of the people who know where to find new demographics, data from Google analytics and other relevant information which can be pulled into CRM using tools available from apps marketplaces (ex : Appexchange).

#3 Salespeople need to be prompted by management to contribute to CRM

A widely adopted CRM system means users, specifically Salespeople, will not require prompts to update the data in their CRM tool. If you are prompting them to do so, they obviously do not see the value of keying in data when it is fresh and new (which is what you want!). In the grand scheme of things, each bit of sales data enters a process flow from the email or phone call, all the way up to the report that lands in the CEO’s inbox every Monday morning.
Successful CRM projects mean that Salespeople see great value in updating CRM (through their own reports for instance).

#4 Lack of technology / tools has turned one guy/girl on your team into an Excel nerd.

CONCATENATE(), CEILING() or SUMIF() have no secrets for the Excel wizard on the payroll in your team. I once worked with a client with such an excel addiction. This comes with a number of drawbacks : It’s difficult to store history information in Excel. Multiple versions of the Excel file end up destroying data. Users tend to change fields, but this means you will loose previous values, which can be useful for analytics and auditing purposes.

#5 The compliance team is breathing down your neck

Most countries (i.e. country where you are based) and indeed the US and the European Union have enacted legislation to avoid conflict of interest in deal making. For example Sarbanes Oxley compliance (section 404) requires that management report on the adequacy of the company’s internal control on financial reporting. Here in Europe, where ISO standards are widespread, adequate sales automation tools and processes are required to achieve or maintain ISO certification.

#6 You are always on the move, but CRM stays at the office

Do you encounter challenges to update your CRM on the move ? If so, you might want to take a look at Salesforce1 which is an awesome user interface for those of you on the go in Sales. Today, most Salespeople will travel light, the iPad oftentimes replaces the laptop, Mobile is a must have. If your CRM does not support your mobile initiatives, it could be time for a change.

#7 You can’t update your boss, colleagues or Sales Automation tool of record in a couple clicks or
taps and a handful of keystrokes

The most widely used method to update your CRM is to complete an activity when you have finished a sales call, visit, or received an email back from the customer with an order. Yah! we got a new sale! CRM should be Uber simple to update, it should take seconds, not minutes, and most importantly, you should update the data only once. Data duplication is a significant barrier to CRM success.

#8 You believe CRM is complicated

If you believe CRM is complicated, you are ready for CRM Change. CRM doesn’t need to be complicated. The most repetitive tasks need to be automated as much as possible (ex: prompt existing customer for a contract extension 90 days ahead of contract expiry). This can be achieved through workflows for instance. Other tasks relating to day-to-day activities require simplification and clean user interfaces in order to achieve maximum return for your CRM investment.

#9 You have hired an intern to fill in your CRM system

Say no more. Call us immediately, it sounds like you need immediate attention to avoid cardiac arrest.

#10 Maintaining legacy CRM technology is a barrier

Acquiring CRM Software licences, installing, configuring, maintaining, developing CRM systems provided for great value before the cloud revolution, but in today’s ever-changing world, Cloud Based CRM has a distinctive advantage in terms of agility, time to market and total cost of ownership.