Resetting CRM strategy

CRM strategy is created. Specific topics like e-commerce and handling conflict are investigated. And you’ve been reminded that, to be successful, CRM initiative needs to keep moving forward. What is left? Some how for sustaining CRM effort a process for assessing aligning and continually renewing our CRM strategy has to be applied.

A senior organizational development consultant for the city of Austin, TX calls this process ‘conducting a corporate reset’. As The consultant created this process as a check for their business plans and found it works well for testing any organizational strategy. The purpose is to find alignment between what customers want, what strategy tells to do, and the tactics the business have chosen to implement that strategy. Some times they are right on track, but usually one of two things has happened. Either customer needs have shifted, so our strategy no longer points us in the best direction. Or, there has been ‘drift’ in what employees are doing to implement the strategy. A corporate reset ensures that everyone is implementing the right strategy for to right reasons. The consultant helped the firm in customizing the process for use in resetting CRM Strategy.

Follow through:

Most managers and executives begin strategy development with positive intentions about revisiting the process, renewing goals, and making adjustments to reflect market changes. Yet, in the hectic activities of day-to-day operations, those good intentions can fall to the wayside.
To help you follow through:

* Set a date in your planner today for your first and second and even third CRM strategy reset. Make a written commitment to yourself to follow through.
* Include resetting your CRM strategy as one of your annual objectives. Make a commitment to your boss, and ask to be held accountable.

The process for resetting your CRM strategy has three phases. Phase 1 looks at how your CRM strategy is impacting your target customers. Is it working to create the experiences, the buying patterns, the recommendations, and the expanded business opportunities you originally sought to create? Phase 2 requires you to look internally. How well is your CRM strategy understood received, and implemented by the employees responsible for creating and managing your customer relationships? In Phase 3 we take the information learned by looking outward and inward and use it to reset the CRM strategy.

Are You Hitting Your Target?

The ultimate test or your CRM strategy and the tactics you’re using to implement is customer satisfaction. Go back to your ideal Customer Service/Sales Profile. Are you getting the number of initial and standalone transactions that you want or need to give your profile a strong foundation? How about repeat customers? And customer advances? Are the percentages of each of the three levels of customer relationship right for your business?

Subjective and objective:

CRM measures can come in the form of subjective measures, such as customer satisfaction surveys or tracking complaints and compliments. And CRM measures can be objective, looking for hard data such as average length of transaction, transaction accuracy, ability to resolve customer issues in the first contact, and the like. Make sure you look at both.

There are at least four questions you need to ask in Phase 1 of your CRM strategy reset.

Are your CRM strategy measures in place? You will typically have CRM measures at two levels. The first measure the overall CRM strategy and often look specifically at how well the CRM strategy contributes to the larger organizational business goals and objectives, the second measure the individual tactics you implement. For example, measures of customers retention or customers churn address overall business goals.

Knowing Enough

A call center manager who knows everything to know about average length of call but doesn’t also know that relates to customer satisfaction, customer loyalty and customer buying behaviors doesn’t know enough.