Customer relationship management increasingly redefined as enterprise-wide solution, consultancy reports
Palo Alto, CA — December 5, 2003 — The customer relationship management (CRM) software market will see significant growth as these applications contribute to the bottom line and enterprises adopt increasingly customer-centric strategies to identify and retain high-potential customers, according to a new report from consultancy Frost & Sullivan.
In its report, "Asia Pacific Customer Relationship Management Software Market," the consultancy asserted that vendors that help enterprises in establishing a clear CRM strategy tailored to their needs are likely to see greater success rates and faster return on investment.
"With vendors assessing internally the value proposition and experience they provide to customers, CRM is gradually being redefined as an enterprise-wide software solution with back-end integration rather than just a stand-alone software module," said Moaiyad Hoosenally, an industry manager with Frost & Sullivan.
One way that CRM vendors are tackling this shift is by getting involved early in the client's sales strategy. Through close interaction during sales cycles and follow-ups, vendors are customizing CRM strategies to suit each company's structure, goals and operations.
Educating the client's customer is an equally important step. Software vendors are playing a key role in boosting awareness and this, in turn, is increasing CRM software revenues.
"Large enterprise customers are looking to consolidate a host of point solutions and upgrade CRM functions across multiple departments and channels," said Hoosenally.
Providing integration components as part of CRM solutions can attract end users by offering them a one-stop shopping experience while achieving a fully integrated CRM management suite, the consultancy believes.
CRM vendors are trying to develop solutions using open standards such as JAVA to provide scalability. Robust solutions are required to handle the growing Web traffic across multiple domains, databases, geographies, time zones, product store keeping unit and viewers, according to the Frost & Sullivan report.
The report goes on to project that analytic CRM, or business intelligence, will be the biggest value-add for clients since it allows for a range of intelligent planning and decision-making to be done around segmentation of customers, campaign management, market modeling and crafting of better value propositions.
"Customer companies stand to gain more through analytic CRM than merely automating the transaction flow for their clients, and vendors that cater to this need will reap benefits," said Hoosenally.
CRM awareness is higher among multinational corporations in Europe and the United States, with solutions being adopted at headquarters and then being rolled out to offices worldwide. The early adoption by the companies is further driving domestic companies to speed up their investment in CRM.