As a company, you have decided to use customer relationship management software. You invited quotations and vendors have come and given you a presentation on how their systems can help your company. Now it comes down to selecting the right service for your company. Let us look at the parameters that should be used for selection.
- Cost The biggest factor in any company’s mind is the cost of the customer relationship management (CRM) systems used. When selecting a vendor, always look for those systems that can give you more bang for your buck. However, do not choose a vendor because they quoted too low or too high. In fact, look for the middle road where the vendor provides you different modules for a reasonable price.
- Smooth transfer of existing information The second factor should be how you transfer the existing information from your current systems into the customer relationship management systems. This has to be done with zero loss of information and in the format that your workforce is used to. Remember, if the data is lost or if it is in a newer format than the existing information then your implementation will be hampered.
- Modules designed to suit your purpose The third factor should be how the modules are designed to meet your goals. The biggest aim of purchasing a customer relationship management system is to help it improve your servicing and/or sales aspects. Hence, the vendor should seek your inputs while designing the modules. This customization is important for the success of the CRM systems.
- The basic functionality of the CRM system The fourth factor should be the functions included in the CRM system. Many vendors include various functions that are not used by you. It becomes extremely important that the functionality of the software is relevant to your needs. Otherwise, you will be paying for software that you never use.
- The approachability of the vendor Some vendors like to think that they know more than the client does. These vendors will take little or no input from the client and present a customer relationship management tool, which as per them meets your requirements. However, more often than not you will end up with a system that meets only a certain percent of your needs. Hence, always ensure that you and the vendor have an equal say in the design of the CRM system.
- Extremely simple interface The interface of the customer relationship management systems plays an important role in the acceptance by the workforce. If the interface is bulky and cluttered, the system’s implementation will suffer significantly. On the other hand, a simple and organized interface will ensure that your workforce is more receptive when it comes to using the CRM system.
- The data should be easily accessible from anywhere – In this day and age of the mobile workforce, it becomes important to have accessible and up-to-date information. By using an online or web based customer relationship management system, your workforce can access and update the information irrespective of their location.
You should use the above pointers to help you make the decision on which vendor to choose. Remember that CRM is a long-term solution not a short-term one, hence choose wisely.