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1) Should every company become a customer focused business? Why or why not?

Costumers are the most valuable assets of an organization. Whatever the organization does, either its about improving quality or providing variety, all is in order to enhance satisfaction level of costumers. The ultimate aim of organization is to earn customers, satisfy them, retain them and increase the number with time and grow. If an organization could make its costumer happy then it can prosper so the key to success and prosperity of an organization is its ability to value its costumers and make them happy. So in order to achieve profitability and long term benefits every organization should do customer focused business. 2) Why would systems that enhance a companys relationships with customers have such a big rate of failure? Surveys have shown that 50% of CRM projects did not produce the promised results. The system that is implemented in order to enhance the customer relationship has such a big rate of failure because of various reasons: Lack of proper understanding of the system and insufficient preparation. Managers inefficiency of not to try to solve new problem without even developing the business process changes and change management programs which are required for the effective implementation of CRM systems. Implementation of the major system without the participation of its business stakeholders. No any arrangements of training programs for employees to adopt the change.

Most businesses leverage industry trends, innovative ideas and customer and business needs to create products and services customers are willing to purchase and refer to their friends and family. While their are many factors and stakeholders to consider when running a small business, some owners lean towards operating customer-focused businesses, which operate based on customers needs and demands. There are a variety of advantages and disadvantages for every company adopting a customer-focused business approach.

Advantage: Build Loyalty

Running a customer-focused business helps organizations build a loyal customer base. Customers are more willing to purchase from companies that they feel consider their needs when they create products and services. Customer also are frequent patrons to businesses that place a high value on training their staffs to emphasize customer service.

Advantage: Increase Referrals

The more loyal customers are to a business, the more likely they are to refer the products or services to friends, family and business associates. Referrals are advantageous to businesses as they cut down on advertising expenses. Customers who come to businesses through referrals also generally are prequalified, which makes it easier to turn them from prospective customers to buyers.

Advantage: Celebrated for Customer Service

Customer service becomes a part of your company's brand when you run a customer-focused business. When customers hear the name of your business, they automatically associate it with knowledgeable and friendly sales professionals and a company dedicated to ensuring customers' needs are met. Companies such as online retailer Zappos and Trader Joe's are celebrated for their dedication to being customerfocused businesses and providing superior customer service.

Disadvantage: Lack of Innovation

Customer-focused businesses operate solely on customers' needs and wants, which can have a negative impact on a company's creativity. When companies are customer-focused, they may resist coming up with ideas to improve products or create new products, so they begin to lack innovation. While customers may know what they want, companies should use research and development to come up with ideas customers may not think of on their own when surveyed about their needs.

Disadvantage: Ever-Changing Customer Needs

Customers' needs are ever-changing, which means your customer-focused business needs to have the resources, such as financing, staffing and time, to constantly keep up with customer demands. This may be problematic for small business, as it can be expensive and lead to employee burnout.

Disadvantage: May Become Self-Serving

The purpose of running a customer-focused business is to truly focus on creating products and services that are in your customers' best interest. This includes ensuring that you provide customer service that helps educate your customers and lead them to sales. Customer-focused businesses can become self-serving, causing businesses to indulge in their needs and wants, such as focusing solely on profit, with thoughts of the customer trailing far behind. To be truly customer-focused, each strategy and idea you execute should put the customer first.

1) They add hours of work per day to everyone in the organization! 2) The way they actually get used is either as a watch-dog to manage sales activity or to document aspects of the customers relationship that can be held against them. 3) they aren't designed to enhance a relationship they are designed to manage it which no one likes. 4) Lets face it no one in the organization wants it, some sales person got to the guy at the top an sold the concept and everybody else has to eat it. 5) If web access is down we can't do anything because all our info in now in there. These kinds of systems don't encourage anyone to do their job they just encourage them to document it. 6) Everybody knows what customer service really means today. It means blocker/deflector someone or thing put in place to keep you from getting your account the way you want it. 7) the interfaces try to appeal to every company and wind up fitting none of them. 8) You have to go through the CRM's, CRM and nobody wants to do that, so no one will take the time to learn it. Basically it's do it your self. Why in the world would you pay some one to allow you to to all the learn, training, configuring and data entry mangement and reporting yourself. I got news I could have done it by myself before. 9) it's technology just to have technology, it doesn't actually help anything. Okay 9, reasons. I've been in sales since Windows 3.1 and back then we made 3 times the money we make today we had perks everywhere and our customers were loyal and happy because when they called and asked for something a person answered the phone and gave it to them. Yes gave them whatever they wanted to be happy. I lunched with my customers and brought them perks. I had plenty of time to do my job in, I could breathe and I could easliy manipulate excel to do whatever I wanted with my customer base. If my boss needed a list it was no problem I knew who I was dealing with in my head. Now I work 10-12 hours a day and weekends without the perks and benefis because I have to spend all kinds of time finding and entering useless data so that my activity can be managed to prove that I am working, and to build a data base because I'm just a number now too and I could quit at anytime and they need to make sure the next person can step right in, which of course they can because no one has the time to get to know each other and the CSR's use it to protect them selves so when customers do call in they're told there jerks by the person reading the last guys notes. We have many things in business that are a complete hollow failure this is just one of them.


Why would systems like CRM which enhance a companys relationships with its customers have such a high rate of failure? Reasons for a high rate of failure could include: No amount of high-level cooperation will protect a CRM project from rank-and-file employees that hate it due to fear the software would threaten their jobs. CRM is complex to install because it often touches many different legacy systems. A CRM system may prove to be very slow for customers and employees if not designed and implemented right. Poor project planning and training with little stakeholder involvement.

There are various ways in defining an Enterprise resource Planning System. This is how it has been defined by American Inventory and Production Control System (APICS) dictionary: Enterprise Resource Planning: An accounting oriented information system for identifying and planning the enterprise-wide resources to make, ship and account for customer orders. Again in Internet encyclopedia, it has defined as: An enterprise planning system is an integrated computer based application used to manage internal and external resources, including tangible assets, financial resources, material and human resources. Basically, an ERP combines several traditional management functions into a logical integrated system and facilitate flow of information across these functions. It is designed to model and automate basic processes across the organization over a centralized database and eliminates the need of disparate systems maintained by various units of the organization.

Need for Enterprise Resource Planning - Why ERP ?

Separate systems were being maintained during 1960/70 for traditional business functions like Sales & Marketing, Finance, Human Resources, Manufacturing, and Supply Chain Management. These systems were often incongruent, hosted in different databases and required batch updates. It was difficult to manage business processes across business functions e.g. procurement to pay and sales to cash functions. ERP system grew to replace the islands of information by integrating these traditional business functions. The successful implementation of an ERP system will have many advantages, as indicated below:

Business integration and Improved Data Accuracy: ERP system is composed of various modules/ sub modules where a module represents a particular business component. If data is entered in one module such as receiving, it automatically updates other related modules such as accounts payable and inventory. This updating occurs at real time i.e. at the time a transaction occurs. Since, data needs to be entered only once at the origin of transaction, the need of multiple entries of the same data is eliminated. Likelihood of duplicate/ erroneous data is, therefore, minimized. The centralized structure of the data base also enable better administration and security provisions, which minimizes loss of sensitive data. Planning and MIS: The various decision support tools like planning engines and simulations functions, form integral part of an ERP system which helps in proper utilization of resources like materials, human resources and tools. Constrained based planning help in drawing appropriate production schedules, thereby improving operation of plant and equipment. As a part of MIS, an ERP system, contains many inbuilt standard reports and also a report writer which produce ad hoc reports, as and when needed. Improved Efficiency and Productivity: In addition to provision of improved planning, ERP system provides a tremendous boost to the efficiency of day to day and routine transactions such as order fulfillment, on time shipment, vendor performance, quality management, invoice reconciliation, sales realization, and cash management. Cycle time is reduced for sales to cash and procurement to pay sequences.

Establishment of Standardized Procedures: ERP system is based on processes of international best practices, which are adopted by the organizations during implementation. Department silos are purged and maverick practices are done away with. Because of top down view available to management, chances of theft, fraud and obsolescence are minimized. Flexibility and technology: Due to globalized environment, where production units, distribution centers and corporate offices reside in different countries, organizations need multi currency, multi language and multi accounting modes, in an integrated manner. These provisions are available in most of the ERP systems, particularly in products offered by tier 1 and tier 2 vendors. ERP vendors are also quick to adopt latest technologies, from mainframe to client server to internet. Unlike a bespoke system, Upgrading to latest technology for a running ERP system is uncomplicated, involving mostly adoption of service packs and patches.

Although ERP provides many advantages; its implementation is a strategic decision, involving significant resources (both financial and human), proper evaluation and business process re-engineering. There must be commitment from all levels. A failed implementation may lead to bankruptcy of an organization.