Richard Heygate

Richard HeygateRichard Heygate heads Sophron Partners, the well-respected and fast-growing independent CRM consultancy, which has clients such as The Royal Bank of Scotland, Vodafone, Ford Credit and Great Universal Stores.

An engineering graduate from Oxford University, he became interested in computing and joined IBM’s financial services marketing division – eventually leading the team that developed the first ATM. He was recruited by McKinsey to develop its information technology practice.

Richard built up and led McKinsey’s London-based centre of expertise in financial services and technology. During this period he pioneered CRM techniques with banks such as Standard Chartered and Halifax. He set up Sophron as an in-house technical support team with a strong emphasis on hands-on implementation. Four years ago, Sophron became independent, and is now a 60-strong expert group focused on creating real ROI from CRM implementations. Richard is an active consultant within Sophron (mainly in the mobile telco and financial services sector) and a well-known public speaker and conference facilitator..

Richard is well-placed to advise Senior Executives, such as CEOs, marketing, sales, finance, operations, service and IT directors on:

  • Maximising the return from CRM
  • Developing the necessary new processes and skills
  • Sound advice based on personal insight into the technological and human aspects of CRM

Richard should be contacted when it is not clear how CRM should be positioned within marketing strategy. All too often CRM has become a functional discipline, concentrating on building basic disciplines, such as propensity models and campaign management systems. These activities also tend to be focused within direct marketing, rather than multi-channel environments. At the same time marketing expense escalates, as organisations try and come to grips with more complex customer segmentation, new buying attitudes and new channel efficiencies.

CRM, all too often suffers from suspicion and a poor history of low Return on Investment and is widely regarded as over-focused on technology. Meanwhile CEO's and Marketing Directors recognise that improving marketing effectiveness and customer profitability is THE challenge for the next 5 years. CRM has, at its heart, as set of disciplines that make marketing action measurable and controllable, yet, all too often it is seen as marginal, technology driven activity and not of significant impact on the bottom line.

Richard combines a clasic strategic consulting background, with 9 years of deep CRM expertise. Most recently, he has been working with international experts on strategy implementation, such as Robert Kaplan and David Norton, inventors of the Balanced Scorecard, to develop totally new approaches to measuring the impact of CRM initiatives and integrating all the process, organisational and skill building actions essential to driving the benefit throughout an organisation. Some of his most successful client engagements position CRM within programs deliverying hundreds of millions of dollars, and considered key "CEO issues".

For those who want to break out of the CRM "functional box", and realise the real benefits of the new discipline in a strategic marketing context, Richard's expertise is unrivalled.


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