The good news is you’ve done all of your research, chosen a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and implemented it successfully. The bad news is your sales team refuses to use it and, instead, are sticking with their old, trusty spreadsheets. According to some industry estimates, 40% of sales people were still using their old methods to store customer data as of just a couple of years ago. That’s a lot of wasted time and money.
There are several reasons your sales team may not be getting on board with your new CRM. Some highly probable reasons include a lack of knowledge, bad data, difficulty updating, lack of understanding and/or a willingness to change. If these could be issues in your organization, take a look at some of the below solutions.
Reason 1: Your sales representatives have limited technical expertise using the CRM
This could be as a result of simply not being technically savvy at all or they could just be more accustomed to a different CRM. The most effective way to combat such an issue is to provide solid user-related training to your sales teams. This can be achieved very effectively with sales webinars for the existing team and onboarding webinars for new members to get them up to speed when they join the company.
It would also help considerably to provide your team with the industry best practices for CRM use, such as providing strong leadership, using automation to avoid human errors, and instituting quality control, etc.
Finally, it may help to give them information about how CRMs are evolving and being adopted by industry leaders, giving them an added incentive to learn and adopt the technology.
Reason 2: Your CRM is full of bad data
You can have the most user-friendly system with the most technology savvy sales reps, but if your data is bad, you are bound to lose your sales team’s contact data loyalty to their pile of post-it notes on their desks. It can be difficult to maintain a CRM free of incorrect, outdated or duplicate information, but performing regularly scheduled audits and using tools such as data de-duplication or other auditing tools, including 3rd party auditing tools, will help you cleanse your data and keep it clean. Creating a CRM data quality standard policy may also help by having staff follow rules from the beginning. However, features like automated formatting can make a huge difference by making certain fields consistent and correct, such as international phone formatting, which would alleviate even more issues deeming cleansing less necessary in the future. According to a Sirius Decisions study, bad data costs organizations $1 to prevent a bad record from being input and rises to $10 to correct the bad record after entered (source: RingLead). Utilizing a robust CRM will give you options for cleansing data to ultimately save time and energy, resulting in better conversion rates.
Reason 3: Your CRM is not easy
Perhaps your team tried to use your CRM, but found it was too difficult to update or organize the data. Manual data entry has the potential to not only be tedious for your sales reps, but can lead to those unwanted errors mentioned above. Implementing a CRM with automatic syncing options will alleviate many issues associated with manual entry and allow for easy updates. The ability to sync your Google contacts can be a game changer in terms of collecting and syncing contact data easily. Providing options for frequency and types of contacts will help you sift through which contacts to sync and which to avoid as well. For instance, Agile CRM’s options include frequency, ability to choose individual contacts or to sync entire groups from Google and has the capability to add tags to trigger marketing campaigns automatically. Syncing your Google calendar, sharing your calendar, and automating invites and follow up calls are other desirable features to make CRM use easier for your sales teams.
Reason 4: Your sales team does not understand the benefits of using a CRM
Simply not being aware of how beneficial a CRM would be to your teams’ day-to-day activities could be contributing to their unwillingness to use it. Helping them understand the various benefits to them, such as cutting down on the time it will take for each sale, keeping all of their customers’ relevant data in one place and the ability to access the information from anywhere at any time could create more buy-in overall. Perhaps you could share case studies showing the high revenue that has been generated for others with the use of a CRM.
Reason 5: People struggle to change
No matter who you are, change is difficult. This is no different for sales representatives. However, there are ways to help make change easier and get them on board with your CRM. One is to get them involved right from the beginning. Ask them what their requirements are for a new CRM. Present solutions that include their requirements and have them help decide which CRM works best for them. Even if you don’t get everyone on board this way, you may be able to get some of them to agree to it at which point you could appoint them to be Champions for your new system. If they know it, accept it, and perhaps even like it, they would be able to help you get the other team members on board.
It isn’t the first time or the last time your employees will be resistant to new technology, but following some of these tips will help your organization succeed in adopting a new CRM. Ultimately, a CRM that offers so much to assist in your sales team’s day-to-day activities will be an easy sell, if it’s done correctly. With a bit of training, some guidelines to follow and involvement from all users from the beginning, your new CRM will be able to help set your sales team up for success.