The Benefits and Challenges of CRM Migration

Migrating Data

The Benefits and Challenges of CRM Migration

Guest Post by: Jamie Roberts of Anderson Frank

Migrating your CRM solution is a big deal no matter what software you’re moving to or from. Get it right, and your business will reap the rewards. Get it wrong, however, and you could be forced to deal with a lot of problems.

It’s a complicated manuever that requires extensive planning and preparation. In fact, its complexity is often a reason why people choose to stick with their current solutions — and that’s why trusting an established partner is recommended to help make sure your migration is a success.

There are several factors to consider if you are to benefit from the switch fully and have a flawless migration.

Challenges

Data and client details in your old CRM system will often be structured differently to how they’ll appear in your new system, and unwanted data can hinder your transfer. So too can the format in which your data is stored. If you fail to recognize this, your migration will be destined for failure.

However, by budgeting correctly and choosing the right partner to work with, you can lean on their knowledge and experience to make the migration a painless and smooth process. A good partner will know how to deal with issues such as links to values that have been removed, and links to inactive and deleted records.

It’s important to note though, that migration can be a time-consuming process. Once a business decides it’s time for change, all too often they want it implemented yesterday. Rushing a migration can prove more trouble than it’s worth; it’s vital that you take your time and observe all the correct processes, otherwise you will run into trouble.

Software migration has been compared to moving houses — not only must you find your new home and pack up your belongings, but you must also unpack and, depending on how many ‘rooms’ your property has, you have to plan your time accordingly.

Then there is the actual usage of your new CRM. Many businesses face difficulties in gaining user adoption, because their employees don’t adapt to change. For migration to be a success, everyone on board must be committed. If a member of your team fails to adapt to the new system, it can prove costly both in terms of finances and time.

Benefits

Migrating to a new CRM can offer many benefits, with each company choosing a different solution for their own reasons.

A primary reason for many businesses looking to change their CRM system is the desire to migrate their data to the cloud. A recent survey of Salesforce professionals found that nearly half of the respondents had migrated to the solution largely to take advantage of the benefits of cloud computing.

Perhaps surprisingly, storing your data in the cloud offers enhanced security levels beyond what you would get if you were to host it in-house. This is because your chosen partner’s reputation is on the line if any security breach was to come about, meaning that far stricter regulations and procedures are likely to be in place.

Of course, while your vendor or partner will have their own measures in place, it’s still partly your responsibility to make sure your data is secure.

Migrating to a cloud solution can also lower your costs, starting with your initial investment. Using SaaS solutions eliminates the need for any expensive in-house hardware or infrastructure. There’s also the bonus of being able to access your data anywhere, at any time, and on any device.

Obviously, many cloud-based solutions are vying for a share of the market. Salesforce currently leads the way, but a recent survey of NetSuite professionals revealed that a third of respondents who had recently changed their CRM software had actually migrated from Salesforce to NetSuite. Top reasons for changing to this solution included improved reporting facilities.

NetSuite’s CRM allows you to access streamlined information throughout the lifecycle of your customer, meaning it can simplify your business’s lead-to-cash processes.

One thing that migrating will ensure, if done correctly, is that your data will be ‘cleansed’ and displayed in a more orderly fashion. To have a successful migration, it’s essential that you get rid of those unwanted fields and data. Doing this will make your processes more efficient, saving you time and money.

It’s clear that a well-planned migration can improve the efficiency of your business, but that’s exactly what it must be — well-planned.

Choosing the right vendor and solution is crucial, and can help your business organize its key data in a neater set-up, while saving you money.