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In our survey, User Adoption was an oft-cited problem
with CRMs. It's a logical concern. If data doesn't end up
in the CRM, finding value in it won't happen. But how do
you boost user adoption? Here are some thoughts.
1. It's probably not the platform. It's probably your
people. When you first go to a CRM - any CRM - it's
going to be different than what you're used to, and
different is hard. Expect that acceptance will vary and
find some early adopters to spearhead your team. And
for every article that suggests those early adopters will
be young millennials, I'll tell you that in my experience
it's not a generational thing, but rather an attitudinal

available feature sets; probably not surprising given both
the investment required and the robust platform available.
Respondents were a third less likely to feel as if the CRM
couldn't support their unique business challenges, which
also makes sense. Those of us who've paid consultants to
bend Salesforce to yield to our world know it can be done,
which is different than what is offered among the many outof-the-box solutions that aren't built for customizations.
That said, using Salesforce - at least in our study - seemed to
yield little, if any, competitive edge. While a slightly smaller
percentage of respondents indicated they were behind
sales targets, and a slightly greater percentage indicated
they were somewhat ahead, none were among the 14.5%
fortunate respondents to indicate they were greatly
exceeding target.
To sum, Salesforce is probably a better product for getting
the CRM to support your unique business processes, but it's
not going to close business for you, and at the end of the
day that's true for any CRM.
Where all of these tools succeed is on the "M" of the CRM
- the management piece. The customer relationships? That
will always be on you. LT

VP of Market Growth & Innovation,
Benchmark Construction
Contact Marcus at:

2. Accept the possibility that it could be the platform.
While users have to hold up their end of the bargain,
let's face it: all of our businesses do have some shades
of grey, either due to the industry we're in or the
company we are working for. Some of us are heavy on
phone usage, while others mostly email. Some rarely
leave the office while others are road warriors.
These realities of our business should frame our
CRM selection.
3. Stop thinking about forcing adoption. Start thinking
about providing value. Humans are inherently
selfish and when it comes to CRMs, I've seen a lot of
managers try to mandate adoption, without showing
users how they can get value out of the CRM. Whether
it looks like an easier way to prioritize tasks, simpler
reporting or the elimination of paperwork, every
CRM has been designed with the intent to lessen the
administrative workload of the sales and marketing
professional. Show your users how CRM will help them,
and adoption will be less of a struggle.
4. Make CRM a regular part of your meetings. A
funny thing happens when you start a meeting with a
CRM dashboard on the screen. People realize you're
going to be talking about the data housed within it. By
running meetings with CRM reports, the company will
begin to see that CRM isn't just about what goes into it,
but what comes out of it.
5. At all turns, fight duplicate entry of data. As much as
I will blame adoption on a user's resistance to change,
let's be clear: If the user is having to re-enter data that
exists elsewhere in the company, that's a challenge that
must be accepted by the people in charge of the CRM.
Double entry of data, in this day and age, is a waste
of time and energy - the scarcest of all resources.
Moreover, once you start porting data into your CRM
automatically, the users will see it become a source of
value for them. (See #3)


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of LancasterThriving_Summer2017

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