Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a very popular topic in today’s business environment. As is often the case, the very popularity that is causing CRM to become the fuel for board-level discussions in many organizations, is also leading to confusion and misconceptions over just what true CRM entails. To fully achieve CRM, an organization must be able to integrate comprehensive knowledge of its customers with business strategies that span functional boundaries and require extensive cooperation across the organization. It is only after an organization has implemented marketing, service, sales and risk management technologies, and is able to integrate technology and business strategy, that a comprehensive CRM environment is approached.
Given the multi-faceted nature of CRM, organizations transitioning to this environment typically need to undertake multiple initiatives that span both business and technology. Intelligent Solutions Inc. offers a CRM mentoring consulting service that is designed to help ensure a successful transition. The CRM mentoring engagement focuses on assisting organizations with initiatives that fall within the five critical components of a comprehensive CRM environment:
- Implementing a coordinated, customer-focused business strategy
- Creating a CRM-friendly organization structure
- Establishing a CRM-savvy organization culture
- Utilizing a comprehensive definition of “customer”
- Implementing an integrated customer information technology environment
Benefits that an organization can gain from a CRM mentoring engagement include coordinating CRM investments and maximizing their return, facilitating progress in CRM initiatives, and ensuring the appropriate levels of quality in both business and technology initiatives.
The schedule for the mentoring activities will be established during the planning session. This schedule may be adjusted based on project progress, additional initiatives, and changing resource requirements at the client site.
Typical mentoring activities range from 2 to 10 days per month.
Specific deliverables for this engagement will be defined in the form of the project plan tasks and activities and will vary with each client situation. Some of the deliverables include:
- One intangible deliverable is attained through the interaction of the ISI consultant and the company’s personnel. In addition to assisting progress, the consultant provides formal and informal education on relevant concepts and actively strives for knowledge transfer to the client project team.
- Formal written status reports documenting project activities are a second on-going deliverable.
Ongoing support, monitoring, and mentoring in the transition to a CRM organization is a third deliverable. Education, strategy reviews, work plan reviews, initiative coordination, technical assistance, architecture assistance are some of the specific deliverables associated with typical mentoring tasks.