CRM no longer the panacea to managing Customer Relationships

CIOs no longer see CRM software as the key to managing customer relationships effectively but are instead turning to a much broader range of technologies to help the business achieve its goals, says Gartner.

According to the researcher’s latest survey among 1,586 CIOs working in organisations across 27 industries and 41 countries, even though customer-related aims figured highly in respondents top 10 business priorities, CRM software was nowhere to be seen among their 10 most important technology focuses.

‘Attracting and retaining customers’ ranked fifth in IT bosses’ list of top business goals, followed by ‘targeting customers and markets more effectively’ at number eight. ‘Expanding current customer relationships’ came in bottom of the league table at number ten, however, while business process improvement was top.

Dave Aron, a vice president at Gartner, said: “As we see a return to growth and organisations look at various ways of improving customer relationships, CIOs are saying that there are other ways than CRM to drive growth in customer terms and obtain a greater share of their wallet. It doesn’t look like they believe CRM is the key any more, but no other single technology is either, whether that’s across one company or all of them.”

This means that organisations are now starting to look at employing IT more strategically, for example, by introducing more flexible infrastructures to cope with merger and acquisition activity or introducing technology to support their sales and marketing functions more effectively in specific ways.

As a result, while there is a clear business trend towards returning growth, “there’s not a definite picture of how technology will help,” Aron said.

Read the full article here.

 

Commentary

This is interesting. Without specific access to the Gartner paper itself it does, on the surface, reinforce what we’ve already stated under our own topic “What is Adobe Livecycle ES2 ?“. I spoke with Mike Ellis of 3rd Wave Business Solutions again and he pointed out that “CRM does not solve customer engagement needs. It seems companies are moving towards other technologies to fulfill this gap. The article also points to BPM being the most important initiave for businesses.”

Once again, Business Process Management is seen to be at the heart of any growing and flexible enterprise.

 

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