The benefit of analyzing your CRM ROI figures

After previous CRM ROI forecasting activities, you have your cost figure summarised and your return figure; one being a debit and the other a credit.  These two figures can now be expressed in one of two ways:

  1. A basic Money Spent less Money Saved calculation – this will tell you whether you have actually made a saving or incurred a cost.
  2. You can use both figures to calculate various metrics, dependent on what you want to know.

There are also plenty of other things that you can calculate. For example:

If you have made a saving, was the cost worth it? (time, money and effort put in)

Ideally the new CRM system should have provided the company with a substantial move forward in relation to sales department performance and efficiency and this should be expressed in terms of monetary savings.

Recommended reading: use our comprehensive CRM pricing guide to help work out potential CRM ROI

If you made a loss, why did this happen?

If you cannot see that any saving or improvements have yet been made, then something has gone wrong.  Were your original expectations realistic?  Did you choose the right software programme?  Have you received what you asked for?  Is the new system being used properly?  Has staff training been effective?  Once you know what is going wrong, you can correct your use of the system or check out why it is not doing what it was supposed to.  If it is not making savings for the company now, it needs to do so in the future.

So what happens next?  

Decide on the period of use which you are going to apply to the system and use this to evaluate it going forward.  Consider whether the CRM is totally functional as it is or do other modules need to be added and if so, at what cost?  If there are performance issues, you need to take steps to address them.  Maybe training needs to be re-examined and intensified.

Get feedback from stakeholders; from users through to staff and clients and ascertain what their overall view is of the new system. If it is positive, use that as an asset which you can capitalise upon.

Because the initial purchase was a huge investment you need to take the time to carry out this CRM ROI process carefully and correctly.  Once you have determined the current performance of the software system you will be the one reporting to the management.  If the outcome is not what was planned and shows a negative then find ways of turning this around so that results will improve; do this before you submit your final ROI report.

Take a step back

You should also take a step back and evaluate what you have done.  Did you make the right choices?  Have the right metrics been applied?  Have targets been met, exceeded or have you fallen short? Decide when you will carry out the next CRM ROI examination and if you will stick to the same methods and metrics or whether you will change them.  

Investing in an expensive CRM system is a big step and for this reason, calculating the ROI is an essential and fundamental part of the whole process.  It may seem like a daunting operation at the start but my breaking it down into easily manageable sections, auditing the ROI will be a manageable and efficient technique.

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Jane Tareen

About the author…

An MBA-qualified professional, Jane specializes in all kinds of copywriting and creative content production. With many years spent working in advertising and publishing, she is also skilled in editorial production and proof-reading. Whilst writing, she has a constant companion in the form of one very large Fox Red Labrador!

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Jane Tareen