The perfect CRM would be really simple, but not too.

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Heap emailA few weeks back I asked the question, “What would the perfect CRM look like?

The question drew lots of conversation and was accompanied by a survey.

I think this comment from Ben Smith of WBP Systems, maker of HeapCRM, sums it up for the true small business.

I just wanted to comment on your great point. I do think that many people confuse “CRM” with “CRM software”. In an attempt to make this point, we actually spend the first part of our manual discussing a coffee shop and how by simply putting a sticker on the cup they have achieved every goal that you would ask of a CRM.

What someone really should do, to implement a CRM, is get a list of goals they want to achieve with the CRM system (not necessarily software), then find the simplest tool that achieves all of their goals. If you can achieve all of your goals with a spiral ring notebook, then you should use a spiral ring notebook. Of course if you need Salesforce with some-odd add-ons then that’s what you should use.

And perhaps the survey results may support this as well.

Only 61% said they used any form of CRM or Contact Management

    When asked what was most important in terms of features:

  • Contact history 79.6
  • Lead tracking 62.2
  • Opportunity management 49
  • Task list 40.8

More advanced features such as inventory management, partner management, shopping cart integration, lead distribution, quote management were largely unimportant.

  • 78% of the respondents were companies with less than 20 employees.

Any surprises? Not really – conclusions – keep it simple, don’t make me have to change the culture of the organization to make it work.



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