Post by Haley O'Brien |
2012 saw growing traction for Lexis InterAction in the private equity sector, driven by firms’ need to harness contacts/associates for business leverage in a difficult market. From our implementations, we have noted areas that merit special attention when deploying CRM technology to ensure project success:
- Reporting – Ascertaining the type of reports required – Monday morning, investment case, deal origination, deal flow, expert profile, etc. – early on in the project is imperative so that the requisite fields are appropriately incorporated in the design scheme and structural configuration stage of CRM implementation.
- Change management – Adopting CRM as a discipline requires a cultural change in the way business is conducted. The first step to change management is securing top down buy-in for the discipline. Communicating the vision for the project along with the benefits that will accrue to users is a good place to start.
- Data quality – Dedicating time to transfer data from disparate locations such as business systems, Microsoft Outlook, legacy and access databases, investor books and deal pipeline spread sheets into a central repository is well worth doing. Thereafter, data cleansing is necessary to ensure that data migrated to the CRM system is accurate and credible. Maintaining data quality then becomes a lot easier too. This in fact is a major InterAction forte through the advanced Data Change Management functionality offered by the solution.
- Project roll-out – Aligning the strategic goals of the firm with the objectives of the project; reinforcing and communicating the same in a relevant way to all user groups at every stage of the roll-out is key. Roll-out must be well staffed too.
- User training – However intuitive and user-friendly a solution is, providing individual user group needs-based training is crucial. Short interactive sessions seem to work better than a one-off approach to training.
This list is by no means exhaustive, but it outlines the most important aspects of a CRM implementation for private equity firms.