Sunday, April 20, 2008

How can any company survive without CRM?

Having moved from the Telecom Industry to Software, CRM was an epiphany of what Sales and Reporting could be like in the promised land! How can anyone work, thrive or be successful without CRM!

I came across some stats on CRM adoption by the Sales Lead Management Association ( and was surprised and not surprised by the results:

Their 2nd annual Sales Lead Management Study, conducted with 144 businesses in Southern California, revealed the following results:

68.8% don’t qualify leads before sending them to their sales teams
52.4% have no formal process for compiling sales forecast reports
82.8% don’t track ROI for lead generation investments
55% rated low satisfaction with their SFA/CRM system, at 5 or less on a 10-point scale
52.1% use no SFA/CRM system to track the lead process

Prior to joining NetSuite, I had the pleasure of working for mid size companies and most recently a start up. We used Outlook for Sales Force Automation, and with the consistent turn over in our Direct Sales Force, leads would be lost with every rep turn over. We must have misplaced thousands of leads and lost millions of dollars in unrealized revenue.

When the start up I worked for was going through the due diligence of being aquired, there was no doubt in my mind that not having a CRM cost them millions as well. Without CRM, they had excel spread sheets of corrupted prospecting data that took the reps and the Managers hours (more like days) to compile.

My old company not only lost leads every day but also in the lost multiples they would have received when the business was sold.

CRM is not only a day to day must have but also an exit plan! No matter what your exit plan is: go public, buy out, merger....

I have to put a plug in here for NetSuite. I bet if you surveyed every current and past employee, all of them would tell you what an unbelievable product NetSuite is. The reason is because we all use it all day, every day and I am Wowed consistently.

Whether you choose NetSuite or another CRM solution, do your company a favour, buy it, use it, spend the money and have it implemented properly and force your employees to adopt it. Without a corporate culture of CRM adoption, your results will be less than stellar.

Honestly, how can any company survive without CRM?

Susan Corcoran