Nowadays, companies have experienced and been deeply influenced by intense conditions of competition, and the almost dissolution of borders due to the effects of globalization. Due to these changes, companies have been obliged to lean towards differentiation in order to survive and develop. Most of the companies have started to manufacture quality products with affordable prices with the help of developing technology in order to satisfy their customers. After achieving good quality and appropriate production through technological advances, the most important objects of companies to get one step ahead in competition is the customer.
The CRM systems can be classified based on their focus points. While some of the CRM solutions support front desk areas, other solutions may support the administrative departments that are not directly in touch with the customer. Similarly, some CRM systems focus on information management while others are more process and operation-focused.
The most commonly used CRM systems are cooperative CRM, operational CRM, and analytical CRM. While there are other CRM systems, these are generally considered as the sub categories of the ones above (Jorgenson, 2015). In most situations, the system can be utilized to support various types by integrating additions to the current CRM system. For example, operational CRM systems can function as the analytical CRM solutions through business intelligence add-ons.
Analytical CRM systems are systems that will help the company, especially in their costumer-oriented strategies. The aim of these systems is to assist the company in understanding customer behaviors and reactions as the basis of being customer-oriented.
Cooperative CRM systems are systems that assists various departments of a company, such as sales, technical support, and marketing, in sharing information they retrieved in their relations with the customers. For instance, the feedback from the customer to the technical support department may be beneficial for the marketing department personnel in their processes regarding products and services. The purpose of cooperation is to improve the service quality, and therefore to enhance consumer satisfaction and loyalty.
Operational CRM systems are systems that support the areas of a company that come face to face with the customer (Buttle 2004). Operational CRM systems that provide solutions to call center and customer services employees, aim to keep the customer satisfied and happy, and therefore to increase loyalty. These systems especially work in coordination with the sales force automation systems.
Generally, frequent mistakes are being made in CRM applications. The most commonly observed mistake starts with misunderstanding the philosophy or theory of CRM. The reason why many companies are, in a way, overloaded with the data they retrieved from the consumer is because they made large investments in CRM systems before knowing how they would be processing this data (Boulding, et al., 2005). Companies that cannot process or transform information into knowledge, are not getting any returns from their investments. At this point, the prominent Vargo and Lusch (2004) study highlights the fact that knowledge is the basic resource of competitive advantage. The bottom line in CRM systems that make a difference is their potential to correctly analyze the data regarding the customer and the company, and to transform the information to create value for both the company and the customer.