UK SMEs better at CRM than larger firms

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The UK's small and medium sized companies are better at keeping their customers happy according to a survey of 100 IT managers, but some 37 per cent have yet to invest in a CRM system.

The research, commissioned by customer interaction specialist FrontRange Solutions, found that 25 per cent of UK SMEs feel they have achieved their CRM objective, compared to just 9 per cent of larger companies with revenues over £250m.

Within larger companies, investment cost was cited by 42 per cent of IT managers as the principal barrier to CRM success, with cultural issues placed second at 30 per cent. Smaller organisations found cost less prohibitive, with 32 per cent claiming cultural issues were the biggest stumbling block and only 25 per cent citing cost.

The importance of strategic decision-making is highlighted by the research as CRM objectives vary widely, regardless of company size. The four most common objectives were contact management, service and support, opportunity management and customer segmentation.

"The term CRM is far too generic,” said Alastair Trower, professional services, FrontRange Solutions. “Customer interaction objectives vary according to what type of business an organisation is in. For example, financial services companies will focus on contact management while retail, distribution or transport companies will be more concerned with service and support issues. Software and services need to understand this and stop approaching CRM as a 'one size fits all' horizontal application.”

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