University of Twente Student Theses


CRM success through enhancing the project management approach

Raaijen, Thomas (2018) CRM success through enhancing the project management approach.

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Abstract:Currently, the success rates of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) implementation are considered below any threshold. Approximately 70 percent of the businesses chose to invest in CRM have experienced a shortfall in improvement. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that these discouraging findings have questioned the CRM performance nexus. The emergence of CRM has shown to be an elusive phenomena to study in research. The main issue that contributed to the stumbling of CRM is the inability of the field to formulate a consistent conceptualization of CRM. Furthermore, the field has seen some confusion about what is constituted in CRM. The significance is that CRM is much more than IT. Moreover, there is an abundance of important considerations to make due to the multi-disciplinary nature of CRM as a research topic. To that extent, the current experience-based approach to the research of CRM implementation is inadequate to account for the variety of considerations. The focus of this research is to design a project management approach that provides needed guidance for CRM system implementation to be regarded as successful. Such an approach is motivated by the need of organizations to plan and monitor the CRM implementation in a way that integrates the high-level overview of the project and the detailed reporting of project progress. This research is important in two ways. First, it has a high practical relevance. The number of companies that will focus on the customer needs as an opportunity to enhance business value is predicted to rise significantly in the years to come. This trend emerges due to the large-scale collection of customer data that incurs the opportunity for businesses to improve the service proposition. However, CRM implementation failures show that the field is pressured to pinpoint how to appropriately approach CRM implementations. The availability of a methodology that is able to address the multidisciplinary nature of CRM will be useful to take away the pains that CRM implementation is confronted with. Second, this research is beneficial to the theory building in a troubled research field of CRM and especially in connecting the theoretical background to the field with the area of managing the implementation initiatives, an area in which a plethora of ideas exists. The research approach applied includes the Design Science Research Methodology as the guiding research method. In addition, the Grounded Theory Literature Review Method and the Information System Design Theory are applied to respectively review the heretofore literature and thus gather requirements for successful CRM implementation as well as empirically validating the findings in a case study at BrixCRM. To that end, the case study further improves the theoretical relevance of this thesis since there is a towering need of case studies in the field of CRM. An approach to CRM implementation is proposed based on the findings of the literature review about CRM, CRM implementation and the associated factors as well as on the findings of the case study in which five companies were implementing CRM in partnership with BrixCRM. The proposed factor-based approach to CRM implementation, the “consultancy guide”, concentrates on the measurement of factor importance. In addition to the theoretical findings, a toolbox of project management controls are proposed which includes instruments such as the Project Initiation Document, the Business Model Canvas and a dashboard for monitoring the performance of implementation initiatives. The main conclusions are that the consultancy guide accompanied with the toolbox can, in fact, be useful to companies that seek to implement CRM. The case studies showed that the consultancy guide can, in fact, predict the importance of 80% of implementation success factors which is found to provide relevant and understandable lightweight guidelines which can be used on voluntary basis. Therefore, it is recommended for practitioners to cherry-pick the guidelines that suit their needs. If the consultancy guide is followed, the proof-of-concept can be used to create awareness about the topics that do add value to the CRM implementation. The validation was done by interviewing project managers and consultants at BrixCRM. This might have injected some subjectivity bias into the results. Future research is suggested to include experts employed at other companies and other disciplines. The inclusion of more perspectives strengthens the validity of the results. In turn, the theoretical and practical relevance of this research will also improve.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
BrixCRM, Almelo, Nederland
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:54 computer science
Programme:Business Information Technology MSc (60025)
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