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Busting Myths About Outsourcing CRM and Data Quality Support

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Outsourcing is a cost-effective solution for staffing CRM, eMarketing and Data Quality roles. But misconceptions about outsourcing can get in the way. This post separates the myths from the facts.

Research indicates that up to 70% of CRM implementations fail to meet expectations. And poor data quality is one culprit, costing organizations millions, (or collectively, billions) in lost revenue and relationships each year. But what the research doesn’t say is that the leading cause of failed CRM deployments is not the CRM technology. It’s adoption issues and change management challenges within your organization.  In other words, let’s stop blaming the tools and look at…

The People Problem

To fix the problems, you have to focus on people. Having the right people leading and implementing your CRM, eMarketing and Data Quality programs can mean the difference between success and failure. But the costs of qualified CRM, eMarketing and data quality personnel – assuming you can find and keep them in today’s market – can be high as well. You can rack up hundreds of thousands of dollars in annual salaries to acquire an experienced internal CRM team – and that doesn’t include benefit expenses or the costs associated with training, managing and supervising the team. Plus, CRM staffing is often a “revolving door”: just when you make a big investment in money, time and effort to get your staff up to speed, they leave, and you have to start the expensive replacement process over again.

The Answer to Your People Problems: Outsourcing

How can you close the revolving door on CRM staffing? Many smart firms are now turning to outsourcing to remedy their CRM, eMarketing and Data Quality people problems. But some firms still don’t appreciate all the benefits of outsourcing or may be holding on to some outdated beliefs. Let’s separate the myths from the facts.

Outsourcing Myths – and Facts

MYTH #1 – Outsourcing providers don’t perform as well as in-house staff.

    • FACT: The reality is that turnover rates among in-house CRM and Data Quality specialists are high, and that affects quality and productivity. Outsourcing providers have dedicated staff who can provide singular focus on your CRM and data quality, unlike most in-house staff who are often busy balancing other tasks and juggling multiple responsibilities. Outsourced CRM and Data Quality professionals are highly skilled and experienced serving multiple clients, often in the same markets or industries.

MYTH #2 – Outsourcing is more expensive than keeping CRM and Data Quality support functions in-house.

    • FACT: This is simply not true. Research indicates that most companies outsource to reduce costs. You will realize cost savings from reduced investments for salaries, insurance and other benefits and even the expense of offices that are often in prime (aka $$$) real estate locations. And don’t forget about eliminating all that time typically spent hiring, supervising and managing the internal staff.

MYTH #3 – After outsourcing, it will be difficult to justify the Marketing Department headcount.

    • FACT: Actually, one of the biggest benefits of outsourcing is to allow your seasoned staff to focus on more strategic, high value work and get more accomplished for the department and the firm. Extra benefit: happier Marketing people.

MYTH #4 – Lack of daily supervision could reduce quality control and visibility.

    • FACT: Supervision is critical to success, and it will be performed by your outsourced service provider’s management team, freeing you up for more strategic tasks. Continual communication with your outsourced team allows your management to have a sense of control without hands-on involvement in day-to-day staff supervision. Additionally, at the start of a project your provider should help define metrics for success to ensure that you receive regular reports on productivity. Ultimately the outsourced team becomes a valuable extension of your in-house team, working together to produce exponentially superior results.

MYTH #5 – All outsourcing providers are the same, so choose the least expensive one.

    • FACT: While discussing balancing budgetary concerns vs. securing skilled staff, we once asked a Client, “Would you hire the cheapest brain surgeon?” Smart marketers know that real cost savings come from hiring the most knowledgeable, experienced professionals because you will reap rewards in terms of efficiency and effectiveness. Rather than focusing primarily on price, ask providers these important questions:
      • How long have you been providing outsourcing services?
      • How many satisfied Clients do you have?
      • What types of training do you provide to your team?
      • Where are your team members located?
      • What are the typical productivity rates for the types of work we require?
      • What levels of accuracy do you adhere to?
      • What methods and metrics are in place for tracking and reporting?
      • What security procedures are in place to protect our information?
      • What levels of customer service will be provided?

References

Many companies may claim that they provide outsourcing services, but ultimately, it’s important to hire a company that provides not only services, but also superlative service. It is essential to thoroughly check references to determine if the provider you are considering has not just satisfied, but delighted Clients who enthusiastically and regularly recommend them. Never skip this essential step.

 

Chris Fritsch is a Business Development Technology Success Consultant and the Founder of CLIENTSFirst Consulting.

For more than 10 years, the team at CLIENTSFirst Consulting has been helping professional services firms and other organizations successfully select and implement CRM and eMarketing systems to maximize value, adoption and return on investment. If you need help achieving CRM Success, please contact us at 404-249-9914 or Info@CLIENTSFirstConsulting.com.

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