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Consolidated CRM deployments drive paths to modernisation and social CRM

Research summary - best practices

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As with any maturing product category, CRM applications have evolved over time from point applications to best of breed solutions to end-to-end suites. This report examines some common styles of modernisation as CRM emerges from the systems of transaction era to the systems of engagement era and beyond.

A. Introduction

With the average CRM deployment nearing the end of their useful life, over 85 percent of line of business executives and CIOs intend to upgrade their CRM systems in the next 24 months. Why? Customer expectations and a slew of innovative solutions have changed the delivery of customer centricity. Key factors include the need to adopt disruptive technologies, complete the customer view, and achieve business value.

Constellation’s latest survey of over 200 CRM decision makers highlights a trend to consolidate the CRM core as organisations chart four paths to CRM modernisation. The four paths - stay with status quo, move to shiny new CRM, consolidate and augment, and modernise and surround with best-of-breed - represent pragmatic approaches to achieve customer centricity.

Regardless of approach, Constellation recommends that executives approach CRM modernisation with a lens that accounts for including tangibles, intangibles and contingencies in the calculations of business value. Using the Constellation Business Value Framework, organisations can quickly compare the four paths of CRM modernisation and determine the most appropriate path.

B. Research Findings - Best Practices Indicate That a Consolidated Core Is the First Step to Modernisation

Among 203 respondents, the majority (85.7 percent) intends to make significant efforts to modernise their CRM efforts in the next 24 months (see Figure 1.). The four paths to modernisation include:

  1. Stay with status quo (14.3 percent). Organisations may choose to continue business as usual. The catalysts for change include major events such as new business models, merger and acquisition, or regulatory requirements. Status quo includes keeping the system as is. Most organisations in this category have either really good adoption or overbought and barely take advantage of existing capabilities. Backers of the status quo scenario find little business value justification and line of business support in making any changes. Many line of business executives and CIOs gain peace of mind knowing that their CRM landscape remains consolidated on one or two platforms and can deliver the power of an integrated core.
  2. Move to shiny new CRM (21.2 percent). Organisations may choose to stay with their existing vendor to avoid any mass changes in training, adoption and implementation costs. Another popular option will be to do a full out rip and replace. The financial wonks will weigh the cost of a reimplementation against the cost of doing nothing - status quo and making an upgrade with an existing vendor. CIO-led organisations will want the power of an integrated core and minimise point solutions.
  3. Consolidate CRM and augment with best-of-breed (37.9 percent). Organisations may choose to consolidate their CRM environment and surround with best-of-breed applications. SaaS applications and CRM point solutions now play a key role in enabling extensibility to CRM customers. Augmentation with third-party solutions with an integrated core not only ensures that business users gain critical functionality, but also provides users with leverage in future contract negotiations. With CMOs and line of business executives in the front office taking back IT budgets, expect CIOs to argue for consolidation of the core as a call for sanity in overall IT strategy.
  4. Upgrade CRM and surround with best-of-breed (26.6 percent). CRM deployments typically run a five to seven-year life cycle. With the last big set of implementations in the 2004 to 2005 era, almost 50 percent of organisations plan an upgrade. Many line of business executives want to upgrade their core CRM system and then modernise their integrated core by adding best-of-breed apps on top of CRM. This option resonates best with line-of-business-led organisations and those with rapidly changing business models and dynamic businesses.

Figure 1. Get To SCRM By Taking The Four Paths To CRM Optimisation

The Bottom Line: Plan For Apps Ownership Maturity

As CRM technologies mature and fall in line with existing well-defined business processes, expect the five stages of apps ownership maturity to take place.

  • Point solutions. These offerings represent specific features and solutions to address significant problems.
  • Applications. These offerings bring together feature sets and point solutions together to address specific workloads and use cases for departments.
  • Best-of-breed suites. These offerings solve larger sets of business problems across different departments.
  • Consolidated end-to-end solutions. These offerings address workloads and business problems across the enterprise.
  • Verticalised offerings. These offerings solve broad end-to-end workloads for specific industry vertical-use cases across the enterprise.

C. Report Links

See what the top challenges CRM buyers face. Understand how to apply Constellation’s Business Value Framework to CRM consolidation. Find out what Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Oracle Siebel, Salesforce.com, and SAP customers should do as they modernise to support SCRM. Buy the full research report on the Constellation Research website.

Your POV

Are you moving to Social CRM? Ready to upgrade your current CRM system and need help. Want to design your next generation customer experience. Add your comments to the blog or send us a comment at R (at) SoftwareInsider (dot) org or R (at) ConstellationRG (dot) com

Please let us know if you need help with your Social CRM/ Social Business efforts. Here’s how we can assist:

  • Assessing social business/social CRM readiness
  • Developing your social business/ social CRM strategy
  • Vendor selection
  • Implementation partner selection
  • Connecting with other pioneers
  • Sharing best practices
  • Designing a next gen apps strategy
  • Providing contract negotiations and software licensing support
  • Demystifying software licensing

Posted by R "Ray" Wang

Reprints

Reprints can be purchased through Constellation Research, Inc. To request official reprints in PDF format, please contact Sales.

Disclosure

Although we work closely with many mega software vendors, we want you to trust us. For the full disclosure policy, stay tuned for the full client list on the Constellation Research website.

* Not responsible for any factual errors or omissions. However, happy to correct any errors upon email receipt.

Copyright © 2001 -2012 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC All rights reserved.

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