The near past saw the effective implementation of the online services including Electronic Customer Relationship Management (e-CRM) solution by the US-based IT giant IBM. The conceiving and implementation of online e-CRM solution by IBM was scheduled in association with the leading CRM software vendor - Siebel Systems.The process followed by IBM to implement the e-CRM solution describing its systems architecture faced quite a lot challenges in implementing the solution, but the benefits reaped by the company after the implementation were enormous.In January 2000, IBM, the $86 billion IT company, embarked on the largest electronic based Customer Relationship Management (e-CRM) project known at that time. Termed CRM 2000, the project aimed at ensuring that any point of interface between the customer and IBM, through any of its channels, in any country, was dealt with uniformly, providing the same service level, applying the same tools and information.In other words, IBM wanted to present a unified interface to its customers across the world. In 2004, four years after the project, the company was well on its way towards fulfilling its objective, reporting significant improvement in customer satisfaction levels.To manage the worldwide installation of Siebel's e-CRM applications, IBM launched a global program. Installation of e-CRM systems was only a part of the implementation process of CRM solutions at IBM. A more important task was to manage internal business process changes following the installation.The deployment of the e-CRM solution let to significant productivity improvement at various IBM units within a year of implementation. Without increasing the number of staff manning call centers, more number of calls could be dealt with and more leads were generated.
Q1. Discuss the importance of implementing an online CRM solution in a large multi-product, multinational company.
Q2. Discuss the implementation process of a mega e-CRM project in a leading IT company in the world.
Q3. Study the challenges faced in an e-CRM project and identify ways to overcome them.