The CRM Buying Process Steps 9&10

Step 9: Financial Requirements

By now, you should have several solutions in mind that tackle the problems you identified at the start of the process. After you’ve figured out the solutions that will work, it’s time to decide which of these is most affordable. This is the time to look for hidden costs; the base cost is almost never the extent of your expenditures with CRM. As stated earlier, there may be expenses for customization, integration and support. For example, on-premise software may carry an annual maintenance expense of 22 % or more. Knowing the full cost of your CRM solution up front and projected over the life of the software will prevent you from being over budget later—and anything you find too expensive, short-term or long-term, can be scratched from your shortlist.

Step 10: Vendor Requirements

Once you’ve made your selection, the last thing you want is to discover that your vendor has over-promised and will under-deliver—or worse yet, won’t be in business to support you in the future. When you think you’ve found the right CRM solution, pause to examine that vendors track record—and do it independently. Vendor references are not likely to be random; the most successful and happy references may not reflect the experience of every buyer of a particular vendor’s product. Do your own research—social media is useful for this—and ask whether the CRM implementation was genuinely transformative, and if so, what role the vendor had to play in that.

Source: The 10-Step Guide to Buying the Right CRM Solution – Sugar CRM

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