CRM Success Needs Management Support

A recent survey found that CRM has not achieved its full potential because of bad execution and a gap between the organization's vision and its execution. The survey, conducted by consulting firm Accenture and market researcher Wirthlin Worldwide, polled by telephone, is a representative sample of over 100 of the leading executives in the Fortune 1000 companies. The survey found that 75 percent of top Fortune 1000 executives surveyed cited flawed execution plans as the leading cause of CRM failure, while fifty-five percent said inadequate support from upper management was the main cause of CRM failure. "CEOs need to take a closer look at innovative and proven methods of maximizing the return on investment of CRM and customer value initiatives by going back to the basics," said Beth Eisenfeld, CRM research director of Gartner Fifty-six percent of those surveyed said their business would grow as much as 20 percent if they could gain access to comprehensive data on their customers, while 5 percent said they were likely to see no growth. But even those that are gathering customer data admitted they are not using it to its fullest. Twenty nine percent said their company is only "to a slight extent" utilizing all customer data to drive sales, while 21 percent stated they are doing so to "a great extent." "Too many CRM projects focus on the mechanics - specific tools and technologies - rather than the ultimate goal: increasing the value of the customer relationship," said John Freeland, Accenture global managing partner for Customer Relationship Management. In addition, the study also found that 32 percent of the respondents said that operating costs would not be reduced by outsourcing all or part of their customer service operations. Lisa Picarille also writes for Line56.com
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