What is a CRM System and Do I Need One?

Updated: December 16, 2009

What is a CRM system?

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is one such enabler that allows organizations to track every customer interaction be it a phone call, an email, a web form enquiry, even a tweet(!) and then use this incredibly valuable information to get closer to and understand better their customers and prospects.

But CRM does much more than just track customer interactions. It also helps organizations streamline their operations by automating routine tasks and enforcing best practices with the result that individuals within your organisation spend more time on the interesting stuff like engaging with customers rather than dull, monotonous administrative tasks that add minimal value and increase frustration saving huge amounts of time and effort.

A well planned implementation of a CRM system makes it easier for everyone inside your company to work together efficiently and share understanding of critical customer and prospect information.
Ultimately, CRM allows organizations to better acquire, manage, serve, and extract value from their customers while improving operational efficiency—something that is critical in today's economy.

The ultimate aim and goal of CRM being the true 360 degree view of a customer and every interaction. Never again having to ask, when did you call in and how do you spell your name again.

So, how do you decide if you really needs CRM software?

Surprisingly, there is no simple answer.

Experience and analysis shows that many companies have spent lots of time, effort and money on CRM software and associated services with minimal benefits.

The main observation is that the work has just gone on as before. The mistake that these companies have made is that they have just jumped on the bandwagon without really understanding their needs and evaluating what the CRM software really has to offer them.

Featured Research
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    Adopting a CRM platform early offers many advantages, including the fact that it increases the odds of long-term success. While the cost of CRM software used to be prohibitive for most small businesses, this is no longer true. Cloud-based solutions have made the pricing much more competitive, and as many as 87% of companies now rely on them for their CRM software. more

  • 7 Ways Your CRM Helps Convert Leads

    Failure to convert interested leads can impact your bottom line drastically and simultaneously increase your operational costs and decrease your profits. The most common reason for this failure is lack of follow through from a sales team. Did you know that 74% of CRM users said that their CRM gave them improved access to customer data? And that by properly implementing a CRM, a business could shorten the sales cycle by 8 to 14%? more

  • Is Your CRM a Liability

    Is your CRM a liability? Before you answer too quickly with a no, just think about all the advancements that have taken place over the years regarding this technical solution. In fact, just in over the past decade there has been a dramatic shift away from on-premise systems to cloud based solutions. more

  • 12 Must-Have CRM Features

    Having a CRM is absolutely essential to any modern day business's success. In fact, 91% of companies with 11+ employees now utilize a CRM solution in their business. When making the decision to purchase or upgrade your CRM solution, it can be quite overwhelming determining which features are essential to your success versus those that pack more fluff than punch. more

  • Making the Case for a New CRM

    Did you know that having an outdated CRM is just as bad as not having one at all? Do you find yourself working even just a little too hard to make your current CRM work to maintain your contacts and relationships? While it is increasingly more difficult to reduce customer churn, modern CRM tools are much more powerful and provide much more opportunity to develop stronger relationships with your clients that can provide more stability and revenue to your company and bottom line. more