Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Mobile CRM Tips

Mobile CRM is becoming a necessity for field sales and companies with service personnel. Companies know that they need to enable their employees who are out in the field servicing customers to access company information in real-time--place orders, ask questions, report results, etc. However, as is usually the case with CRM systems, there is a lot of technology out there... How does a company know which mobile CRM solution will suit their specific needs?

This article, Six tips for mobile CRM success, helps narrow the playing field. It provides some very practical tips on what you should be considering as you shop for mobile CRM technology. I've summarized (with many quotes from the author) each of the six tips.
  1. Plan ahead. Consider today's requirements and try to anticipate tomorrow's needs. The author suggests not locking yourself into proprietary software or hardware operating platforms. "As systems such as BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Apple iPhone and Google Android develop, you can be sure your remote users will be asking you to provide support for their devices."
  2. Focus on the real world requirements. "Avoid getting caught up in fancy features and applications that will not be used in a mobile environment. Be realistic and understand what information and transactions your users will actually need to access in their mobile CRM system."
  3. Does the mobile CRM application meet your security requirements? "The system should meet the “Ooops - I left my mobile device in the taxi” test."
  4. Ease of navigation. "Mobile CRM operates on small devices with small screens and small keyboards. It is crucial to ensure that the system is easy to navigate in order to encourage a high adoption rate"
  5. Speed of implementation. This is a big one. Make sure that you know exactly what your vendor has committed to in the way of implementation timelines before you commit to their solution.
  6. Is it scalable? Make sure that the system can grow as your business grows. Also make sure that it can handle the amounts of customer data that your firm collects and stores.
Kudos to author Christian Wettre of W-Systems for these practical tips.

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