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11th January 2016

Do CRM quickstart projects work?

When implementing a new CRM package many organisations aspire to introduce the application in as rapid a timeframe as possible, often underestimating the application. This desire is fuelled by various factors – not least that the vendors assure them that it can be done, and by doing so they can begin to derive ROI sooner rather than later.

In response to this, many consulting firms have formulated so-called “Quick Start” packages that promise to implement, from scratch, a CRM solution within 3 to 5 days. This approach has been particularly attractive to smaller organisations who generally have more limited budgets to work with.

But are these “Quick Start” packages the right way forward? Here are three reasons why I challenge this more rapid approach:

INGAGE-1 CRM is NOT a technology project. It’s a holistic strategy

First and foremost, a CRM project is not all about implementing a new set of toys. To generate ROI, the project should be planned as a set of business changes to address business challenges – and hence recognise and address people, organisation and process impacts as part of the initiative. Its very difficult to achieve this in 3 or 5 days!

crmmatgrid CRM has a broad scope

Because of the time constraints, Quick Start projects tend to focus on implementing technology to address only one or, at best, two key business processes. So, which processes(s) do you choose for the project? And how do you re-design the way you work – particularly where other processes are connected with the one(s) you have scoped in? Furthermore, what scope of customer data will you hold in the database? Surely you don’t intend for sales related information to be held in CRM but, for instance, customer support enquiries and cases to be stored in a completely different one? How will that deliver the “single view of the customer”?

success_stickfig CRM is an opportunity to deliver improvements

A common issue with many failed implementations is that the CRM solution was designed to fit existing ways of working. The opportunity with a new CRM initiative, however, is to identify how the technology could be deployed to empower the organisation and deliver improvements in the ways they work.Quick Start projects don’t allow for this. They simply involve some basic configuration of standard functionality – and then expect you to live with the way the system works “out of the box” – i.e. irrespective of whether that will deliver improvements or not.

For these reasons, at least, I am not a big fan of rapid QuickStart programmes and would advise organisations to think carefully about whether such an approach is the best way forward.

That said, I am an advocate for delivering change in small and frequent bursts however this needs to be crucially aligned with a clear strategy and overall plan.

So, in contrast to “QuickStart”, Hyphen8 has developed “SmartStart”: a package of services that enable our clients to implement a tailored solution in a way that confirms to a more holistic plan, and delivers positive change in a relatively short time frames.

We suggest 3 weeks (not 3 days!!).

SmartStart is based on implementing your solution on either Salesforce.com or Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online – the world’s leading cloud based CRM platforms.

To learn more, please call us on 0207 608 5671 or email:

Kirsten Goodman (Salesforce.com): kirsten@hyphen8.com – 07966 039614

Nathan Williams (Microsoft Dynamics): nathan@hyphen8.com – 07490 505455

Id also love to hear more about your thoughts and experiences with QuickStarts. Have they -“worked” for you? Leave a comment below with your feedback!

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