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Microsoft Dynamics CRM Implementation

How to Overcome the 5 Key Challenges of CRM Implementation

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Dynamics CRM Online 16 for 2016Implementing a customer relationship management (CRM) solution can be intimidating. It seems like there are so many options, customization decisions and integrations that could simply go wrong. On top of that, you keep hearing that adoption is the hardest part – getting sales reps to actually use it. Great. It can be tempting to push CRM into the “losing battle” category and embrace the inefficiencies instead.

I would like to address some of the most common challenges in implementing CRM with features (some new, some little-known) in Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, whether these occur as you’re selecting a CRM, making the transition, or managing post-implementation performance.

The fact is, there are many processes that Dynamics CRM Online does very well right out of the box with very little customization or effort. The recommendations below will help you overcome the challenges of CRM implementation by capitalizing on the high impact, low effort priorities – maximizing CRM as a collaborative business process framework that can be used heavily to drive productivity and sales for your business.

Watch this overview and demo to see the below solutions in action:

Challenge #1: Process Complication

Extra work, extra steps

Implementing CRM can seem like adding an extra layer to sales or service processes – employees have to constantly jump between applications to track their progress or look up information. However, instead of building out flashy new workspaces, Microsoft has invested heavily into integrating Dynamics CRM Online into the tools that their users already use: OneNote, Excel, Outlook, Word and more. Watch the demo to see how you can work in Excel and CRM at the same time – trust me, if you love your spreadsheets, you’ll love CRM.

With Excel integration, reps don’t need to go into every CRM record and update their deal information before the weekly sales meeting. With a few tweaks to your spreadsheet you’re good to go, and the VP of Sales will be able to drill down on an accurate sales funnel and dashboard.

Dynamics CRM Office Integration

Dynamics CRM Immersive Office Integration

Dynamics CRM Online integrates across the Office 365 Suite so that you can use Word, OneNote, SharePoint or Outlook and be working seamlessly inside Dynamics CRM Online.

Challenge #2: ROI Realization

We’re a year in and haven’t seen any tangible results

A lack of tangible results or accurate ROI tracking can often seem like a CRM issue, while in many cases it is a documentation issue. Again, this comes back to capitalizing on those high impact, low effort priorities. With the immersive Office experience, all data and engagements are tracked through CRM. When executives look at their dashboard, which is updated in real-time, they can see a complete snapshot of how processes, communication and the overall bottom line has improved.

Challenge #3: User Adoption

People aren’t using it

Beyond integration, it is also critical to have those tools available where your salespeople work and when they need it most. This concept intentionally meets the demands of today’s increasingly mobile, connected workforce. Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online supports your mobile reps, this trend and Microsoft’s core concept of “cloud-first, mobile-first” by supporting virtually any device.

Taking this a step further, it’s important to note that CRM isn’t just for sales – and that doesn’t mean that you purchase licenses for the entire company. Even users without a Dynamics CRM Online account can collaborate and interact with CRM-based data through any Office 365 application.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM ImplementationChallenge #4: Business Insight or Data Dumpster?

We’ve been collecting all this data, but don’t know what to do with it

We hear this all the time – what does it take to turn that data into valuable insights in order to make data-driven business decisions quickly and accurately? Microsoft has also invested heavily into Power BI, its integrated analytics solution for driving real results by putting the right insights in front of the right people. We’ve seen these insights become a central, critical aspect of organizations’ business growth and strategy with Power BI’s proven ability to translate data into business decisions.

Also, watch the demo to see how reps can view and interact with a 360-degree view of each customer.

Challenge #5: Micromanagement

Sales reps thinking execs just want to keep a closer eye on them

Drilling down on performance flaws or pointing out holes in the data is not Microsoft’s mission when it comes to Dynamics CRM Online. The number one goal is to put tools and functionality at the fingertips of your team members to empower sales productivity and unify every single customer-facing activity (Read: If Your CRM is an Excel Sheet You Are Missing Out).


This is the third of many posts covering the best of Microsoft Dynamics CRM – best practices, features and integrations in 2016.

As a leading Microsoft National Solutions Provider, what we’ve seen is that the primary key to resolving these issues is a calculated, people-centric approach to Dynamics CRM implementation which involves value envisioning and user adoption strategies. Contact us at or click below to check out out some of our Dynamics CRM implementation recommendations and services.

Learn More About Dynamics CRM

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