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Choosing the Right CRM Migration Service Provider: Key Considerations for C-Suite Executives and Change Managers

February, 08 2024
Choosing the Right CRM Migration Service Provider: Key Considerations for C-Suite Executives and Change Managers

Every day, C-suite executives face critical decisions that will determine the course of their companies in the rapidly changing business technology landscape. One such decision, often accompanied by a sea of questions and uncertainties, is the migration to a cloud-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system.

This article delves into the crucial aspects of selecting the right CRM migration service provider, covering the steps for a successful migration, discussing the potential pitfalls, and emphasising the significance of a provider with expertise in both business operations and technical proficiency.

The Shift to Cloud-Based CRM

The transition to a new cloud-based CRM can be a game-changer for your organisation, offering the flexibility, scalability, and accessibility required in today's competitive marketplace.

However, the journey to this transition is a complex process that demands careful consideration and expertise. As a C-Suite executive or manager, you need to be well-informed to ensure a successful migration.

CRM Migration Step 1: Assess and Plan

A successful CRM migration begins with a comprehensive assessment of your current CRM system, data, and your organisation's unique objectives and requirements.

Your service provider should guide you through this assessment, helping you define your goals for the migration. It's crucial to answer questions like:

  • What are your specific goals for implementing a cloud-based CRM?
  • How will this migration align with your overall business strategy?
  • What are the key performance indicators (KPIs) that will determine the success of this migration?
  • What data is essential, and what can be excluded from the migration?

Ideally, you’ll have your business processes mapped prior to selecting a CRM and engaging a CRM migration service provider. If you’re yet to document your business processes, you should engage a CRM migration service provider that has business process-mapping and CRM strategy expertise.

To assess the capability of the CRM agency or CRM consultancy you are in discussions with, ask them to walk you through a process map and CRM planning documentation examples.

CRM Migration Step 2: Data Cleansing and Preparation

One of the significant challenges in any CRM migration is ensuring the integrity and accuracy of your data. Your chosen provider should possess expertise in data cleansing and preparation.

To assess their capabilities, ask them to share with you an example of a data mapping and cleansing process that they have completed with a previous client.

Duplicate records, outdated information, and inaccuracies can hinder the functionality of your CRM system and affect the performance of your teams. So it’s important you prepare and process your data thoroughly before you begin the migration.

CRM Migration Step 3: Integration

Integrating your CRM system with other tools and platforms is often essential for achieving a streamlined workflow. Marketing automation, email platforms, e-commerce systems, and various other software will need to work seamlessly with your CRM. A competent service provider should understand the intricacies of these different integrations, and ensure a frictionless user experience and efficient data flow.

CRM Migration Step 4: Customisation

Every business operates uniquely, with distinct processes and workflows. A one-size-fits-all CRM solution will not maximise the benefits of your migration. Seek a service provider who can tailor the CRM to your specific requirements, aligning the system with your business objectives. Customisation should encompass not only the CRM's functionality but also its user interface, ensuring it's intuitive and efficient for all your teams.

Risks of CRM Migration Failure

While the potential benefits of a cloud-based CRM are substantial, so are the risks associated with failure. Data loss, system downtime, and a loss of customer trust are just a few of the potential pitfalls. According to industry reports, up to 70% of CRM migrations fail to meet their objectives due to poor planning and execution.

When assessing your CRM migration partner, ask them how they ensure that business as usual is possible throughout the migration process. Challenge them to answer how they will mitigate risks such as data loss, and projects going off track. It’s important that your CRM service provider acknowledges that these risks exist. Less experienced providers will be less likely to be aware of the risks and how to manage them.

Which type of CRM partner is right for your business?

There are more than a few types of CRM agencies and consultancies. It’s not always easy to know which is best for you. The success of your CRM migration largely depends on the expertise of your chosen service provider. Many organisations make the mistake of thinking that either technical partners or business operations specialists alone can ensure a successful migration. But it's not that simple.

Technical Partners: Data-Centric Expertise

Technical partners excel at managing data, ensuring its integrity and security. They possess the knowhow to handle the technical aspects of migration, and their proficiency in data management is invaluable. However, they may lack the strategic business insight to optimise your processes and align your CRM with your revenue goals. Technical partners often focus on the 'how' of migration but might overlook the 'why' and 'what for.'

Business Operations Specialists: Process Optimisation

On the other hand, business operations specialists are well-versed in streamlining your business processes. They understand how to adapt the CRM to your unique workflow, ensuring that it aligns with your operational needs. However, these specialists may struggle when it comes to handling complex data sets and integrations. They may excel in making your CRM efficient for your teams but can overlook the intricacies of data management.

The Ideal Solution: Revenue Operations Expertise

So, what's the ideal solution for a successful CRM migration? The answer lies in a service provider that combines technical prowess with a deep understanding of your business operations. This combination is known as revenue operations.

What is Revenue Operations?

Revenue Operations, often referred to as RevOps, is a strategic approach that focuses on aligning your sales, marketing, and customer success teams to optimise revenue growth.

This strategic approach means your CRM system becomes not just a data repository but a strategic tool that drives revenue. A service provider with expertise in Revenue Operations can bridge the gap between the technical and business aspects of migration.

Why Revenue Operations Matters

Here's why Revenue Operations is a critical skill set to ensure the success of your CRM migration:

Holistic Approach: Revenue Operations takes a holistic approach, ensuring that every aspect of your CRM aligns with your revenue goals. It considers data, processes, and business strategies simultaneously.

Efficiency: RevOps experts understand the importance of optimising your business processes within the CRM. They ensure that the system works seamlessly with your operational needs, driving efficiency and productivity.

Data Intelligence: RevOps professionals understand the intricacies of data. They ensure that your CRM system is not just a repository, but a source of actionable insights, aiding your teams in making informed decisions.

Alignment: Revenue Operations aligns your sales, marketing, and customer success teams, fostering collaboration and synergy. It ensures that everyone is on the same page when it comes to achieving revenue targets.

Scalability: As your business grows, so will the demands of your CRM. A provider with Revenue Operations expertise can adapt and scale your CRM to accommodate your evolving requirements.

Selecting the Right Provider with Revenue Operations Expertise

To ensure a successful CRM migration, consider the following when selecting a provider:

Assess Their Expertise: Look for a service provider that not only offers technical proficiency, but also has a track record of aligning CRM solutions with revenue growth. Check for relevant case studies and success stories, and don’t be afraid to ask for specific examples that relate to your business.

Collaboration: Your provider should be able to work closely with your team to understand your unique business operations. They should listen to your challenges and goals to tailor the CRM accordingly, while offering their own insights and experience to further optimise.

Scalability: Ensure that the provider can accommodate the evolving needs of your organisation, especially as you grow. CRM migration is just the first step, and knowing you can get the right support further down your growth timeline will be hugely beneficial.

Data Management: Data is at the core of every CRM system. Confirm that your provider can handle data with integrity and security. Consider GDPR compliance if you are operating inside the areas covered by these regulations.

KPIs and ROI: Establish clear Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and methods for measuring Return on Investment (ROI). A proficient provider will assist you in both setting and achieving these metrics.

In summary

The decision to migrate to a cloud-based CRM is a significant one that can redefine the way your organisation operates. To ensure a successful migration, you must choose the right service provider. While technical partners and business operations specialists each have their strengths, the ideal solution lies in Revenue Operations expertise.

Revenue Operations takes a holistic approach to your CRM, aligning it with your revenue goals, optimising your business processes, and harnessing the power of data. By selecting a provider that combines technical proficiency with Revenue Operations expertise, you position your organisation for a seamless and successful CRM migration. Your CRM system should not be just a data repository; it should be a strategic tool that propels your business towards revenue growth and operational excellence.