How to Boost CRM User Adoption in 4 Easy Steps

Are you looking forward to implementing a new or updated CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solution such as Microsoft Dynamics 365/CRM? Or maybe you have just recently done so.

It can be discouraging to hear that many CRM projects fail to provide the benefits that the technology promises. But you might be surprised to know that the majority of failed CRM projects are not a result of faulty technology or incompetent installers. Most times, the cause of the problems is a lack of user adoption. Yes, the very employees that the CRM system is supposed to help are not using it.

So how do you get your employees to not only use the new CRM software but to adopt it and appreciate its benefits fully? Here are four best practices to guide user adoption of your CRM software:

Set expectations

Setting expectations starts early, and it’s up to management and team leaders to set them. Be sure your team understands why you are implementing a new CRM and what your goals are for it. Show them how it will help your business grow. Help them think beyond just technical capabilities such as progress reporting, forecasting, workflow triggers, and business intelligence. Describe how the software will benefit individuals in their jobs by improving the processes they use every day. For instance, your sales team should appreciate how CRM will improve their sales process with prospects and clients—better communication, shorter sales cycles, visibility into previous activity, etc. The CRM system can be oriented to the specifics of various roles within your business.

Connect expectations to both profitability and purpose by describing how CRM will help your company be its absolute best.

Create a plan

Plan for CRM implementation success by breaking the project into bite-sized pieces. Begin by prioritizing project expectations according to profitability. Then link the completion of each objective to specific tasks, on a scale of most important to least important. Metrics for each task must be SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound).

Assign individuals to specific tasks. Define stages for the project and organize the work into short-term phases that contribute to the long-term plan. Successful CRM adoption is a continual process, so be sure your plan is flexible enough to adapt to growth and change.

Let your employees know that the CRM solution is going to benefit them and benefit the company, and that adoption is not optional. Having a plan to follow and to refer back to will keep everyone on track.

Identify early adopters

Counter potential resistance by getting users on board right from the start. Identify those employees from each department who will be affected by the changes that come with the new CRM system, and involve them in the project planning process, from software vetting to preparation for implementation. Analyze user interactions to gain insights about product usage, integration with workflow, and limitations of the product.

Appoint CRM ambassadors whose role is to evangelize the benefits of the system and help their teams understand how it will meet business needs while making their jobs easier. These early adopters help to influence culture by infusing CRM expectations into company values, behaviors, and communication.

Invest in a team

A well-trained project team is essential to successful CRM adoption. The project team’s job is to anticipate and resolve problems that arise during the planning and implementation phases. The team should include senior leaders as well as internal stakeholders in IT, marketing, sales, and customer service, as well as your software installation partner.

The people guiding CRM deployment are more critical to its successful adoption than the technology itself.

The potential of your CRM is realized through strong user adoption. Resources invested in product planning and launch are wasted if stakeholders do not use the system to meet its intended expectations. Happily, you can plan ahead for successful CRM adoption.

If you’d like to know more about Microsoft Dynamics 365/CRM and how it can benefit your business, contact BroadPoint’s Microsoft gold-certified consulting team today

By BroadPoint,

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