Most companies believe top management is not supporting CRM projects enough according to executives quizzed by management consultancy Accenture, but there is no clear agreement on why CRM fails to deliver.
Some 55 per cent of business executives said CRM shortfalls can be attributed to inadequate support from top management, while 74 per cent believe CRM fails because of flawed execution. Among the other reasons most frequently noted for the shortfall of CRM programs were: no long-term CRM vision; weak business case for investments; investments are not prioritised; and return on investment is not calculated properly.
“Too many CRM projects focus on the mechanics specific tools and technologies rather than the ultimate goal: increasing the value of the customer relationship,” said John Freeland, Accenture global managing partner for CRM. “CEOs are now challenged not only to deliver more sophisticated sales and service capability, but also to deliver and manage these capabilities more quickly and cost-effectively.
“Companies face some significant challenges in making their CRM initiatives pay off,” he added. “But that doesn’t mean that CRM is fated to become no more than a fad. When properly conceived and executed, CRM programs can create exceptional economic value.”
More than half of the respondents - 56 per cent - said their businesses would grow from 1 per cent to 20 per cent if they could gain access to comprehensive customer data with most agreeing that technology capable of delivering “historical, current and real-time data” on customers would significantly drive sales. Some 35 per cent of respondents said sales would increase to “a great extent,” while 43 per cent said they would increase “to some extent.”
Accenture conducted the survey in conjunction with Wirthlin Worldwide, which conducted telephone interviews with more than 100 of the leading executives in the Fortune 1000 in May.