Here are ways of getting top management support for CRM Initiatives….
Before I move on with this article, I want to give you a new definition of customer relationship management. The definition is propounded by Claudia Imhorf et al in their book “Building a customer centric Enterprise”.
They define Customer Relationship Management as the process of aligning business strategy, organizational structure and culture, and customer information and technology so that all customer interactions can be conducted to the long term satisfaction of the customer. This will benefit and profit of the organization.
In most definition I have seen so far, since I ventured into the business of customer relationship management and E-Business, technology always come last. The mistake most E-Business Czar always make is that, they fail to have a clear strategy in place before they now introduce technology.
Such miscalculations are bound to fail.
In this article, I will be talking briefly on how you can get Maximum Cooperation as a Customer Relationship Management Evangelist.
When you are trying to sell the idea of customer centricity to your organization. It might also be that you want to move from being product centred to customer centricity.
In developing your plan, you have to come up with a cross functionality business strategy.It must be one that is very clear . It must deliver exactly what you are looking for. One thing you should know is that customer centricity is not a one –department affair. Whenever I mention customer relationship management, some mind flows to customer care.
I want to say that customer service department cannot do all the work that customer centricity requires.
Customer Relationship management is the sole responsibility of the front offices. This comprises of Marketing, Sales and Customer Service departments working together to do business from customers perspective.
Education and enlightenment is the key word here. You have to let your organization understand that they are not doing business from customers’ perspective as long as they are following the old way of doing things. I do hope that someone will listen, pick interest and give it a try.
If there is anything that can ground a good CRM initiative, it is organizational structure. In a product centric enterprise, the whole arrangement is structured around product alone. You are not allowed to bypass your boss or go out of your way because of any customer.
Every individual like government parastatals have their roles that they guard jealously but this cannot work for a customer centric enterprise. That is why it has to go.
In a customer centric enterprise, customer formed the centre of business and there must be flexibility in doing things. That is why a new organizational structure have to evolve that allow customers to have their way.
Depending on the size of your organization, you will also need to invest in applications and softwares that will allow you to integrate the different departments in the organization and allow the front offices to communicate with customers across multiple channels.
This is another ingredient that you cannot do without. The top management support will make it possible for you to have access to all the capital and support in order to make CRM strategy work.
You will be able to get support from other employees who are not ready to accept the incoming changes.
It will also allow you to implement processes and technologies that will later allow the organization to have a 360 degree view of customers and retain them for life.
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