State of Customer Relationship Management: The Canadian Report 2010
Table of Contents
- Highlights and Key Findings
- Customer Relationship Management Investment
- Customer Relationship Management Service Industry
- Customer Relationship Management Employment and Skills
- Customer Relationship Management Innovation
- Best-in-Class Analysis
- Final Remarks
- Annex I —Tables
- Annex II —Definitions
In a global economy, the ability to attract, establish, develop and retain long–term profitable relationships with customers is integral to the strategic advantage of Canadian manufacturing and services firms. Customer relationship management (CRM) is a cross–functional core process utilized by firms to deliver value through their relationships with current and potential customers. CRM strategies can involve all client–facing departments and beyond, to increase profitability and customer satisfaction.
The CRM process is a cycle of continuous improvement over time with iterative feedback and recurring input from a firm's internal and external stakeholders. The CRM cycle involves three stages: market research and marketing; business development; and customer feedback and support (Figure 1).
Phase I: market research and marketing
The process begins with performing market research and marketing for a product or service. Developing a concept for commercialisation and marketing is integral at this stage and can occur in concert with product design and development.Footnote V Determining potential market size while developing appropriate promotion and pricing strategies are key activities.
Phase II: business development
Once the marketing strategy has been developed, it is implemented during the business development stage, where sales generation occurs. Key components of this stage can include effective lead, bid, quote and pipeline management; cross–selling, personalisation and order management; sales forecasting; and logistics and distribution strategy.Footnote VI
Phase III: customer feedback and support
Finally, identifying customer satisfaction and future needs takes place during the customer feedback and support stage. This process leads to improvements and new opportunities for the next iteration of the cycle.1,2
The activities within the CRM cycle are integral for successful commercialisation. Targeted advertising, market research and skills development are among the leading CRM activities used by small and medium enterprise (SME) manufacturersFootnote VII that successfully increased their exports of recent innovative products (Figure 2). In addition, those same firms were more than twice as likely to provide training on how to market the product as those SME manufacturers that were unsuccessful in increasing their exports of recent innovative products.3 Further, providing customer specific services enable exporters to differentiate their global offering and increase profit margins in highly competitive markets.
Overall, Canadian manufacturers and service providers can benefit from quality and timely information on CRM trends and performance indicators. This strategic information can be used to identify best practices, develop benchmarks, and justify investment and innovation decisions for firms while helping inform policy makers of current and future industry trends and needs.
This report provides insights on:
- CRM investment by industrial sector;
- Growth forecast of CRM outsourcing;
- CRM service industry profile: geographic distribution and revenue growth;
- Skills and employment in CRM;
- Adoption of advanced CRM technologies and processes; and
- Business benefits of adopting advanced CRM technologies and processes.
- Footnote 5
For an in–depth look at product design and development, see Industry Canada's report entitled State of Design: The Canadian Report 2010.
- Footnote 6
For an in–depth look at logistics and distribution, see Industry Canada's report entitled State of Logistics: The Canadian Report 2008.
- Footnote 7
SME manufacturers are defined as manufacturers with between 20 and 500 employees and $250,000 or more in annual revenue.
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