Critical Success Factors for CRM Deployments - Part 3 | Avoid the "Big Bang"

Richard Duffy
Richard Duffy in Best Practices, CRM May 18, 2018

(In case you missed the previous two parts of this blog series: Part 1 - Don't Boil the Ocean, Part 2 - Approach the Project from Both Directions.)

The demos are complete, the contract is signed, and now it's time to start achieving the return on investment that you've been promised during the sales cycle.

Avoid the Temptation To Do Too Much

Of course, everyone is excited about the new system and each department likely has a list of the improvements they hope to get out of this new solution. Excitement and enthusiasm are good; however, this is where a big challenge can occur with any deployment – not just CRM, but ERP as well.

The temptation is always there to try to achieve more than is possible with the resources you have and the time available for the roll out. However, it is critical to try to temper expectations and manage the deployment in a staged fashion. Prioritize based on the planning that you did prior to starting the selection process for your new system. Stick to your original plan. 

Where SAP Business One Can Help

When it comes to SAP Business One, CRM capabilities exist not only in the core application, but are also extensible through complementary solutions and the SAP Business One mobile app. With so much opportunity to tailor the solution to your needs and add additional business process automation, I recommend that you first focus on understanding the core capabilities and prioritizing those in your deployment.

Core functionality is perhaps the biggest advantage you have with SAP Business One, because CRM is everywhere (as our previous blog explained). As you configure the fundamentals,  such as the business partner master data, you are already starting the configuration of the CRM.

Quick Wins

Focusing on the core capabilities with SAP Business One or whatever solution you are integrating, will help achieve some immediate value before you tackle customization and more complex business process automation. The quick wins from the core functionality should help you achieve organizational buy-in from stakeholders eager for new tools.

Whereas, trying to deploy core functionality while simultaneously tailoring the solution for more complex goals, you are headed towards a "Big Bang" deployment. While it may be possible for a "Big Bang" to successfully deploy everything at once, the more likely scenario is that the big "BANG!" is the sound of things going wrong. 

CRM Recommendations from the Field

Based on my experience, my primary recommendation is that you consider not only how you will use the CRM capabilities for working with potential new customers, but also where the opportunity exists to utilize the solution with existing customers.

Other aspects to keep in mind:

  • Map out the data you need to track and manage. Next, determine whether user-defined fields can provide you what you need, or whether you require a more detailed customization.

  • Review the mobile applications. Ensure that your field sales force will be well looked after.

    However, while there are many third-party CRMs that excite sales reps,  there are a number of cost-effective complementary solutions from the SAP Business One partner ecosystem. Enterpryze and Boyum IT's CRM extensions are two examples. 

    Complimentary solutions traditionally extend the core capabilities of SAP Business One, so you can start with that core functionality and allow your team more time to adapt to the new add-on solution. If this is the first CRM deployment you have done inside your business, extending SAP Business One may be an easier transition than integrating a third-party solution designed less specifically for use with SAP Business One. 

  • Always bear in mind that your end users will not all adapt at the same speed. Overloading them with too much change, too quickly can have unpleasant side effects.

    At the same time, remember that SAP Business One is designed to be easy to learn and use; allow them time to adjust. Focusing on the core capabilities can be as beneficial with your end users as it is in a successful deployment of functionality. Take advantage of our ONE.Source tutorial videos that cover the core functionality of the application.

ONE.Takeaway | Focus on Fundamentals

At the end of the day, it is easier to recover from an implementation that takes a little longer, but gets the fundamentals right, than taking the Big Bang approach. A rushed process, or trying to do too much, carries the risks of  errors in deployment and challenges in user adoption. 

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