Managers fall down on CRM

Although 69% of senior managers responsible for CRM believe that their companies manage customers well, key customer processes and practices are either missing or poorly managed: only 17% of companies incorporate customer acquisition, retention, development and cost management into their marketing plans; only 8% measure customer management performance and return on investment; and only 35% of companies say thank you to their customers.

It is not only at the operational level that companies are falling short – three quarters of senior managers have no regular direct contact with their customers.

These are some of the key findings from the report, The Customer Management Scorecard, authored by independent consultants QCi and sponsored by the Royal Mail and IBM. The report provides a detailed comparison of customer management performance against best-practice criteria based on QCi’s Customer Management Assessment Tool, CMAT.

One of the report’s most important conclusions is that companies put too much emphasis on CRM technology at the expense of the people side of customer management.

Although the report identifies isolated examples of good practice in some aspects of customer management, the average CMAT score is only 38% and the highest 45%.

The report shows how companies can improve customer management by adopting an integrated approach to planning, marketing, sales, service, IT and financial control, rather than cherry picking or focusing on specific elements.

David Harvey, director of Business Intelligence, says: “For the first time managers have an objective benchmark for all key aspects of customer management.”

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