Customer Software Revolution That Never Happened

Sunday Business (London, England), April 28, 2002 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Customer Software Revolution That Never Happened


Can a software system really replace the old art of knowing your customers?

Not according to Clive McNamara, director at AIT Group, which sells customer relationship management (CRM) software that helps corporations do business with customers online. The market is finally waking up to the fact that CRM technology isnt a magic pill. It wont induce loyalty in customers unless the company culture changes, too. Software on its own can never deliver good customer service.

This view is backed up by recent research involving 450 financial services organisations across the UK which found that 76% of the total investment in CRM systems in the last 12 months, and 80% (worth pound sterling471m) of all new CRM investments planned for 2002, will focus on establishing more face-to-face contact with customers.

The assumption that the call centre and the internet would one day spell the end of personal contact was a huge error of judgement, McNamara concludes.

CRM solutions have not delivered the business benefits they promised. To date, CRM has concentrated on optimising internal business processes without adequately focusing on what delivers value for the customer, says Dennis Howlett, director of research consultancy Webster Buchanan.

Looking after your best customers is what CRM is all about. However, it has been seen merely as a tool to cross-sell at every opportunity and is still thought of as a technology rather than a strategic business issue.

After having been interpreted as the miracle product that was going to make companies customer-centric at the flick of a switch, CRM is generating horror stories of installations that have missed schedule, gone over budget or both, and that have destabilised vast numbers of companies employees. In many cases, expectations were set too high and implementations ignored basic human factors, says Patrick Lawton, chief executive and founder of Digital Union, a supplier of e-business products and services.

According to David Bridges, Deloitte Consultings European head of customer and channel strategy, 90% of all organisations currently offer poor customer service because they do not really understand their customers well enough and the way they interact with those customers is not good enough.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Customer Software Revolution That Never Happened
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?