Salespeople Reveal Their Likes and Dislikes About CRM Systems

softwareCRM software is a great way to automate, organize, and synchronize a business’s sales department, marketing team, customer service reps, and IT crowd. But ask any CRM expert and they’ll tell you that the topic of customer relationship management is a contentious one. Why?

On paper, adopting the most comprehensive, data-heavy software available seems like a good idea. All too often, however, businesses fail to consider one of the most important factors when making a CRM software decision: the salespeople who will actually be using it. Some salespeople dislike using CRM systems altogether. They’d rather focus their time and energy on talking with potential customers and making business proposals. It’s understandable, but there’s no doubt CRM systems can improve customer relations tenfold, as well as provide valuable data and feedback to department heads and decision-makers.

So what’s a business owner to do?

For starters, he/she could seek feedback from their sales team. Business owners should find out what aspects of CRM systems their staff would find useful, and what aspects they’d find annoying or frustrating. Thus is the delicate balancing act involved in making any company-wide decision: one must please the employees, while at the same time adopting software that will actually work well for the company. Choosing the right CRM system is a lot like buying clothes—some things will fit, other things won’t, and it may take several tries to get it right.

It’s a bit more complicated than that, of course. Adopting CRM software means training employees in several different departments at once. And if you think salespeople are sour about having to use CRM software to begin with, they’ll be livid when they learn that the entire ordeal was just a waste of time. To make the wrong choice, then, is a costly and time-consuming mistake.

Luckily, business owners aren’t entirely in the dark, thanks to some very revealing data collected by Software Advice. It lays out the most common complaints and compliments from salespeople who use CRM software systems. In total, 152 salespeople were interviewed. The top complaint? CRM software is just too time consuming.

A whopping 34% of respondents chose “time-consuming” as their most disliked feature of CRM systems. A further 18% said the CRM software they use at their company is likewise too time-consuming, which often prevents them from using it at all.

Technical issues, poor performance, and difficulty integrating were also highly ranked complaints from salespeople.

On the flip side, ease of use and navigation was the mostly highly valued feature. It was followed closely by the quick access to information CRM provides. Information tracking, automation, and integration were other top picks.

What does this data point to? The fact that salespeople, in general, don’t hate CRM systems altogether. In fact, many of them seem to love the functionality they provide. However, there’s a caveat. Choosing the wrong CRM system for the team will likely lead to lots of headaches and frustration, and may even cause employees to abandon the software altogether.

There’s another important takeaway: businesses shouldn’t stress employees out during CRM training. Adopting a new system will take a lot of time and effort. It’s an investment which will ultimately pay off, but only if the proper amount of time is given for all employees to get familiar with the software. Otherwise, they’re more likely to view the system as an annoying hassle, rather than a useful tool.

Remember, 34% of respondents said CRM systems are too time consuming. If a sales team is so bogged down trying to figure out new software, they’re missing valuable time working with customers and generating new leads.

Given the proper amount of time and training, however, a sales team will come to view the right CRM software as it really is: useful and efficient.

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