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The CRM Industry in 2016

14 Jan 2016 / Written by  / News

crm new trends

The beginning of a new year represents a checkpoint, as it offers us all an opportunity to look back on what was accomplished and look ahead to what is to come.

For us at Right IT Services, this also means it’s time to make a thorough appreciation of the CRM Industry. Let us share with you some of our major insights from 2015, as well as our expectations for 2016.

crm new trends

The beginning of a new year represents a checkpoint, as it offers us all an opportunity to look back on what was accomplished and look ahead to what is to come.

For us at Right IT Services, this also means it’s time to make a thorough appreciation of the CRM Industry. Let us share with you some of our major insights from 2015, as well as our expectations for 2016.

The CRM Industry in review

Customer Relationship Management has been a trending topic for the past decade mainly because, when well done, it represents an important competitive advantage for companies that want to stay ahead of the game in the global competition for Customer preference.

Given the proven benefits and the vast offer of CRM software, the question is no longer whether to implement a CRM or not, but which and how to implement, maintain and integrate it.

Whether on premises or in the Cloud, the goal of a CRM system is the same: to provide a 360 degree view of your Customers in order to increase sales efficiency and revenue by enabling excellent Customer service, more proactive analysis and insight-driven decisions.

Very relevant for companies that are already pursuing these goals is the fact that many CRM endeavours fail to achieve their underlying business objectives, deliver value within estimated time and budget and generate positive return on the investment made. The main causes of failure identified by several recent studies represent serious challenges to overcome, such as:

  • Incorrect choice of CRM software
  • Misalignment with underlying business strategy
  • Lack of User engagement and adoption
  • Poor project management
  • Lack of a well-defined roadmap for phased implementation and maintenance
  • Insufficient integration with other enterprise applications

The CRM Industry is also facing its own challenges. Since CRM systems coexist with other enterprise applications, there is an evident concern to make them more easily integrated. In 2015, there were several exciting improvements and the main CRM solutions now include some Social, Mobile, Analytics and even Gamification features.

In fact, the major technology trends in 2015 were related to Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud (SMAC), and things shouldn't be much different in 2016.

One of our major expectations for the CRM Industry in 2016 regards the way companies leverage the benefits of Mobile. Although much has been said in 2015 about Mobile-First Strategies, Forrester estimates that only 18% of companies are using mobile to transform the entire customer experience. Forrester also expects that this year more than 25% will use mobile, not only as a channel, but as a fully integrated part of the corporate strategy to drive Customer engagement and increase overall satisfaction levels.

Given that it's estimated that about 67% of the world population will use mobile phones in 2016 and that the adoption rate of smartphones tends to grow from the forecasted 2.2 billion users, the investment in Mobile is no longer an option, but a must.

Another challenge derives from the evolution of the Internet of Things (IoT). Although it’s not yet clear exactly how this technology will impact CRM systems, it’s hard to imagine how it cannot. In 2016, we expect some success stories in this area, especially in the Healthcare industry, where the potential of wearable technology is being exploited the most.

Speaking of vertical markets, in 2015, CRM industry leaders such as Microsoft Dynamics CRM , Salesforce and Siebel consolidated their offer of industry-specific CRM solutions, offering several advantages supported by best practices, out-of-the-box.

From a cross market standpoint, we believe that “Anything Relationship Management” (xRM) will continue trending because CRM platforms are capable of handling much more than just Customers – they can be used to manage relationships with Partners, Suppliers, Employees, Patients, Passengers, etc. Cloud-based CRM solutions aimed mostly at SME may also gain more market-share due to their simplicity and value-proposition, becoming a real threat to the Big 4 (Salesforce, SAP, Microsoft and Oracle).

Looking ahead

As Customers, our expectations are higher than ever. There is plenty of choice and, more than just provide us great products and services, we expect companies to know us, to value us and to deserve our attention – only then can they obtain our loyalty.

In 2016, we hope and expect more companies to realize the power of Social Networks and implement Social Monitoring tools to interact with Customers, manage complaints and brand reputation.

It’s also time to pay more attention to Internal Customers (aka Employees) and consider their inputs when designing the CRM system, as well as to leverage techniques to increase adoption rates by improving their experience as end-users.

Along with the engagement of end-users, our experience shows us that the right choice of CRM software, the right implementation methodology and the right project team are the basis for a successful CRM system.

We believe that a CRM programme doesn't really start with the implementation of a CRM software, but when the technology is already in place. Developing long-lasting relationships with Customers and conquering their loyalty must be part of a company's culture and way of working. Thus, the CRM system can support the CRM philosophy.

Our commitment for 2016 is to continue to bring the latest CRM innovations and best-practices to our Customers and to help them obtain the highest possible return on their CRM investments.

This means more than delivering projects on time and within budgeted costs: to Right IT Services, it means serious engagement, trust and development of strong partnerships with our Customers.

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Right IT Services wishes you a happy and very productive 2016!

Authors 

Aissatu Sila
Business Analyst
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Pedro Pires
Data Analyst
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Last modified on Monday, 19 March 2018 14:37

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