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The CRM Implementation Process

A strong CRM system is critical to telecentre networks information management. Implementing a CRM requires several stages. Where are you in the CRM Implementation Process?


Planning for a CRM ensures that each telecentre network can find the right CRM tool for their needs. Careful planning often requires from three to six months of work, and is critical to avoiding unnecessary long-term costs and project failure. Planning helps eventual CRM users to prepare for future changes, making them more successful CRM users during system implementation. Step 1: Commitment Determine that you have the time, people and money available to complete each stage of the process. Establish a CRM planning team, determine decisionmakers, and generate a project plan Step 2: Messaging & Project Kickoff Message all participants and eventual users to introduce the project, and explain how they will be involved. Organize the first meeting with core participants to present the project and answer questions. Step 3: Process and Needs Assessment Gather all the information management problems, current processes and policies for how telecentres and networks conduct work, as well as current and future needs from staff. Develop a pipeline illustrating how goods and services flow through the suppliers, to the network and telecentres. Use questionnaires & process mapping tools to help gather this information. Step 4: Summary and Analysis Look for common and unique requests across all the needs assessed, decide which needs are critical and secondary to the project. Detail the critical and secondary information to track and report in the system. Step 5: Final plan draft Combine results of needs assessment into a written plan. Use the CRM Concept Paper Elements to help structure this document. Step 6: Review CRM products and services Talk to CRM vendors and consultants, engage demonstrations of products and look for the best fit solution to satisfy your plan. Use the CRM Product Matrix (coming December 2009) to help learn about CRM options.

PHASE II: System Implementation

Successful CRM system implementation requires each telecentre network to be intimately involved with contracting, data migration, development, training and support. Staying involved ensures the telecentre network receives the product and services expected. CRM system implementation can require from two to twelve months to implement depending on the size of the project. Step 7: Contracting Work with your chosen CRM vendor or consultant to develop a work plan and contract that clearly explains their roles and responsibilities, as well as those of the telecentre network participants. Clearly describe all products and services. Include information on costs, a specific timeline for delivery, ongoing support, processes for approving all product and services received, how to request fixes and changes. Step 8: Data Migration Preparation Identify what information must move into the new system. Work with the CRM vendor or consultant on strategies for efficiently moving information to the new system. Step 9: System Development & Training Involve as many CRM users as possible in available training services. Stay closely engaged with the CRM development process. Involve the CRM planning team in iteratively learning and testing CRM features as the vendor or consultant delivers them. Step 10: Rollout and Support Determine a rollout plan during a less busy time of the year. Message all users about the changes, and what to expect from them. Provide necessary access to documentation, training and support services to ensure all users succeed in adopting the new CRM.