The first step is chaos in the CRM Adoption Curve

You’re ready to focus on creating more customers for your company. But before you can set your sights on where you want to go, you have to first identify where you are at.  To help you understand where you are at today and where you are going tomorrow, I’d like to tell you about the four stages of the CRM Adoption Curve.  This is a very useful model for understanding the evolution of your CRM practices and the challenges you are looking to overcome.

Since there are four stages, I will break this description of the CRM Adoption Curve into four posts.  In this  post, we are going to look at the first stage which is what we call “Step 1: the Manual Stage”.  Many people would probably rather call this the “Chaos Stage”.  This is where every company starts.  You likely know it well.

Your sales, marketing and customer support teams are just getting started and are doing whatever it takes to just get the job done, no matter what.  You likely find that every employee approaches the job in a different way with no standardized processes or training program in place.  Is your customer data trapped in email and spreadsheets on each person’s desktop?  Are customer communications falling through the cracks with lost emails and misplaced post-it notes?  As a result, is your management challenged with poor visibility into what is going on with customers?

Spreadsheets, no basic training, little consistency, success through the efforts of a few heroes.  Sound familiar?  This usually leads to a lot of effort spent on scrambling around, but no clear path to measurable success, little confidence in hitting goals, and a lot of unhappy customers. This is where companies like yours first turn to SugarCRM for help.

In the next installment in this CRM Adoption Curve series, we will explore the “Step 2: the Managed Stage” as you work your way up the CRM Adoption Curve.