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What a CRM system does NOT do for you

Blog: Capgemini CTO Blog

The ‘halo’ of improved customer experience surrounding the implementation process needs to be broken down before the actual implementation starts. Way too often organizations expect that solely the implementation of a CRM system helps them to rid all the bad customer experiences. However, a CRM system is just a tool that isn’t worth anything without proper underlying business change and processes. If these changes and processes are not adopted by the organization you will effectively be moving backward instead of moving forward…

Just an anecdote from my own experience to put things in perspective. I used to own a ‘mini MPV’ like a Renault Kangoo or a Citroën Berlingo. There were some obvious reasons for that choice. The boot, for instance, was big enough to fit a buggy and even a stroller without having to fold it. The volume of the car made it easy to swallow my windsurfing gear inside. Not to mention the ease of having sliding back doors that allow for easy access to children in child seats. So plenty of reasons for that specific choice.


Seen my background in the automotive industry I frequented the official manufacturer’s dealership for maintenance. At some stage apparently, the settings in that dealerships CRM system indicated that it was time for me to buy a replacing car. Based on their information they started to send me emails with cars that should be of interest to me. Funny enough they started to propose my cars in the size of a Renault Clio or a Peugeot 207. Being interested in how they would use my feedback to fine-tune their offers, I replied and stated that I was more interested in a ‘mini MPV’. Another fact I was hoping they would start to include – when finding out that I was, in fact, interested in receiving offers – was the actual additional amount I would have to pay them to obtain the car offered. They know me and my car, they see it frequently in their garage. How hard would it be to include an actual quote that makes me rush to their salesmen in order to get the deal done?

Unfortunately my response – providing them with a refinement of my profile – has not lead to a more refined offer. The next offer I received was exactly the same kind of car as they proposed the first time. I resent my initial response once more, hoping that someone would act on it. But when the next offer was again of the same size as the first one I gave up, ultimately even leading to me buying a completely different brand when finally replacing the car.

So the next time you are confronted with the introduction of a new CRM system that is brought to you as a game changer, please assure that the business change part is in the scope of the project as well. If that has not been covered by the plans yet, you might be heading for the next disastrous implementation without proper adoption by the business.

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