User-adoption is the most vital piece in any new software deployment. Whether it has been a few days, a few weeks, a few months or, a few years since you deployed your CRM system there is still the possibility that it is not driving the best returns. As a result, your CRM is not being used at optimal levels and it will not have the best ROI that you could be achieving. In conclusion, to optimize the usage of your CRM, you have to get all of your users on the same page. Below are 5 CRM Adoption Tips.

1. The CRM Journey

Don’t forget that your CRM initiative is about the journey, not the destination. Unlike most new IT initiatives where you set it up and then let it run, a CRM requires constant monitoring and maintenance. It requires dedicated work from the people who use it, as well as, the IT people who keep it updated. This is essential for your CRM to continue to drive value because CRM isn’t just software, it is a way of working. It combines people, technology, and process in order to streamline the way your company works as a whole.

Once you have gone live with your CRM it is imperative to continually assess and re-evaluate your processes and how your CRM works.


2. Set Your CRM Up For Success

It is never too late to introduce a strong governance policy to your CRM in order to ensure that your system continues to perform at its most optimal level. In order to drive early and late-stage adoption, you should set up a communications campaign of awareness, actions, and alignment. 

  • Awareness: You can foster Awareness through things like digital correspondence, overview presentations, and launch meetings. Get everyone on the same page and make them aware of what the process is and what they need to do.

  • Action: Take Action by blasting out a set of emails that detail the actions needed next, or to prepare for the project. Give constant updates and set up an online repository where anyone can visit to get all of the information for the project.

  • Alignment: Lastly, make sure that you Train your team. Set up the project by explaining the philosophy, what it is for, and what you want to achieve. Then lay out the deliverables.

 

3. Find (and Track) the Metrics that Matter

Metrics are important in maintaining the adoption of your CRM, the problem we often see from our customers is that managers are tracking metrics that their team members are not aware of. If we all have a common goal (ex. More Sales, faster customer service response, etc.) why have separate metrics?

When we develop metrics internally we build them from the top down. Departmental goals roll up to the organizational level and individual goals and metrics roll up to the team level. This process allows us to explain how metrics are calculated and what they are based on, only useful metrics are then measured and everyone is on the same page.


4. Post-Deployment CRM Adoption Strategies

Here are some adoption best practices to ensure that your project’s development remains positive:

  • Touch-points: Create regular touch-points based on usage and adoption metrics to drive sustained adoption.

  • Introduce: Introduce new functionality and support it through major communication campaigns.

  • Feedback: Gather feedback and answer any questions that arise.

  • Success: Share success stories to celebrate the new work environment and foster confidence in the process.

  • Provide: Continue to endorse and provide user education to reinforce the desired behavior.

 

5. Make CRM Adoption Fun

There are gamification add on’s for well-known CRM’s like Salesforce or SugarCRM that organizations can implement, but most of the time a simple strategy of recognition can go a long way. For instance, identify the top performers who use this CRM and reward them for their performance. Similarly, you can incentivize your other employees to work in departments using your CRM tool. Make this competition a regular affair and announce the names of the winners; you’d be surprised at the positive resonance it creates in your company.

In conclusion, CRM adoption is not a singular occurrence, it must be constantly monitored and updated. It should not be a time consuming, productivity drain but rather a tool that employees feel makes their jobs easier. Check out this short video with some tips to get started!