Why does a single customer view feel like a utopia for many companies?
14 January 2020 Daryn Smith
Never before have you heard an employee say, “I love having to switch between five systems to get an understanding of a customer before I can assist them”.
But the unfortunate truth is that data silos are considered the norm for most companies. With the time, cost and effort of a single customer view (SCV) making it a project often paid lip service, but never actually taken on.
Acquiring an SCV is not the conundrum some make it out to be. To prove this, we’ve listed a few perceived problems and how to solve them:
Vendor alignment versus ‘best-of-breed’ alignment — a lot of IT teams haven’t evolved from being aligned to a specific vendor. For example, many companies will bill themselves as a ‘Microsoft’ house, and even if there is a better solution they won’t consider it. This outmoded way of thinking needs to evolve. Rather, companies need to seriously consider using best-of-breed systems — no matter who the vendor is. This ensures that the selected software provides open and well-structured APIs for integration purposes and/or pre-built integrations.
Foundational system is finance-owned — financial and accounting systems have a large part to play in managing governance and control. As a result, they are rigid and need extensive training to use and navigate, and are often locked down to just a handful of users. Other systems are then built on top of this already limiting platform. A more effective approach is to use a CRM system as your foundational system, and then to build upon that.
Horrors of wasted investment — when companies realize they have invested millions in systems that are no longer meeting their requirements, they have to scramble to pivot in the direction of a better investment. This decision is often hampered by prolonged delays, and can come at the expense of customer and employee experience. The sooner the band aid is pulled off in favour of adopting a CRM, the better.