It has been an exhausting week here at Sugar HQ…lots going on as usual, and some pretty fun stuff coming up very soon, which I’ll be blogging about. I haven’t been as active on the blog subsequently, but I did come across a great articulation of the “less is more” mentality when it comes to CRM deployments over at the 1 to 1 Media blog.
The insight comes from Adam Honig from Innoveer solutions, who seems to have been in the CRM game for some time. A lot of these advice points seem common sense to us old salt CRM types, but for a small business – or anyone new to a CRM deployment – these are pearls.
I think the most important points are about limiting functionality at the outset, and making the UI as simple as possible. Non intrusive CRM interfaces and features work the best in my opinion.
I think Adam makes a good point about understanding the business case in terms of a phased roll out, but the way I explain it is this way:
Start with a few pressing, well documented problems in the business as identified by leaders. Map the CRM technology as a solution to those problems, and then deploy. This does two things. One, it makes it easier to explain WHY you are making your employees take on a new application (solving an issue they have probably complained about), and it also helps create a baseline metric to measure success (there is probably good benchmark data since these are well documented problems – i.e. average time to process or approve a quote). Now, with a greater likliehood of increased adoption, you will have better metrics against the issues you are solving. This makes buy-in and sign-off of the next phase even easier (especially if phase II requires more resources or involves more departments).
All in all – it comes down to two things. Keep it simple, and as Adam notes, never stop selling the benefit of the solution.