Customer relationship management (CRM) systems provide transformational value, keeping everything related to managing precious customer relationships in one place. 91% of companies with over 10 employees use CRM software to better track and enhance these relationships, yet mere software adoption doesn’t equate to overnight success.

CRM adoption challenges include convincing employees to adopt changes, handling data security, migrating away from old software and processes, and finding the right CRM for your business needs and budget. Software underutilization and priority misalignment constitute the biggest reasons for failure. As American author, Wallace Wattles, once said: “It is essential to have good tools, but it is also essential that the tools be used in the right way.”

The same can be said for CRM adoption. Resistance to change and intimidation are common barriers easily solved by access to knowledge and patience through adequate training. In this blog, we examine these familiar challenges and provide ways to improve CRM adoption.

CRM Adoption Challenges

A lack of clear goals, synergized software use, and support are the most cited CRM adoption challenges across professions and industries. A thorough understanding of how and why these challenges arise can improve CRM user adoption.

1. Lack of User Centricity

Companies and franchises often make the mistake of tailoring their CRMs towards sales managers, since they are the key decision-makers when it comes to purchasing strategies. The neglect of other relevant team members and departments leads to the underutilization of software. Furthermore, without proper integration, staff are more likely to fall back on trusted methods, perpetuating a cycle of CRM mistrust and misuse.

While CRM software is designed to offer plug-and-play benefits, time still needs to be invested in understanding the full scope of the software’s capabilities. The less understanding employees have, the less likely they are to successfully adopt the system. Before purchasing a CRM, it’s important to designate what objectives you want to achieve and which team members will benefit from it the most.

2. CRM Is Not the Top Priority

Transitioning to a new system has to be implemented and prioritized from the top down. Because old procedures and tools are trusted and reliable, it can be challenging for team members to adopt something new. However, while transitioning is understandably a process, there should be a cut-off time at which the entire team should only be using the new CRM.

CRMs are supposed to make workflows easier, but you can’t leverage their full potential if teams are still using old processes. Onboarding everyone by a certain date needs to be prioritized for the successful adoption and implementation of a CRM. Ensuring your chosen software is used at optimum levels is also a significant part of the process.

3. Employees Don’t Get Enough Training

If you want to know how to drive CRM user adoption, you have to provide training that is contextual to an employee’s use of the system. Training should teach them how to interact with the software at each stage of the process and provide an overview of the platform’s core functionalities.

The one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t always work, nor does lengthy classroom-style learning. The best way is to initiate practical learning and provide customized training to those employees who need it. Launching training well in advance is a sure way to minimize mistakes and guarantee the CRM is correctly used. offers personalized training to ensure every user gets the most out of the system.

4. Losing Confidence in the Product

Inadequate training and the inability to promote a CRM’s benefits for specific job roles can result in a loss of confidence in the product, particularly if onboarding presents a challenge for some employees. One of the ways to increase CRM adoption is to lead by example and ensure training is personalized and detailed.

Planning for integration in advance and a successful strategic rollout promotes confidence and perseverance when troubleshooting. Moreover, if management utilizes the CRM properly, employees will likely follow suit.

5. Lack of Support

When companies adopt a CRM, they don’t necessarily provide ongoing support once the product is implemented. CRM providers release updates and new features that need to be understood and adopted regularly. Furthermore, support or monitoring may be needed to ensure specific projects receive the appropriate data, especially during the initial phase of adoption.

Having a CRM specialist or support person in your sales team who acts as the first port of call for questions, concerns, ideas, and feedback bolsters confidence in the system and streamlines communication. Remember, CRMs are designed to benefit your business and its employees, who may have good ideas when it comes to system optimization.

At serviceminder, we provide extensive user support and guarantee fast responses so our users can take full advantage of every feature offered.

5 CRM Adoption Best Practices

How can a company effectively adopt a CRM? By involving employees, hiring a manager, providing adequate training that instills confidence, and making the process fun. CRM adoption best practices implement strategies that produce the least amount of friction.

1. Involve Employees from the Start

Employees using the CRM daily occupy a significant role in its adoption success. Hence, it’s encouraged to involve them from the start by asking for opinions and feedback. This helps eliminate uncertainties and allows you to acquire adequate support for proper CRM user adoption.

Additionally, when employees feel valued in key business decisions related to CRMs, they’re more likely to use the system effectively and advocate for its benefits, rather than being lumped with a new process they’ve had no hand in shaping.

2. Bring a CRM Project Manager On-Board

Hiring a CRM project manager or appointing someone in-house is an important step when adopting a CRM. This person should be an expert in the product, manage training, be able to answer questions, and oversee the roll-out and onboarding process.

It’s critical they drive CRM adoption and monitor its success. Providing a go-to person for communication, training, feedback, and performance processes makes it much easier to track success, and troubleshoot common challenges, so long as they possess the authority and qualifications to do so.

3. Train Your Employees

We can’t stress how important adequate training is. Regular training before, during, and after CRM adoption is vital as it increases employee productivity and satisfaction. After all, there’s nothing worse than being unable to complete a job because you don’t understand how a system works.

One of the best practices for CRM adoption is ensuring each department, like marketing, sales, accounts, and customer support reps receives appropriate training that meets their specific job’s needs. Understanding how a CRM’s capabilities can benefit each department receive also provides further motivation and enthusiasm for new processes.

4. Make Sure Your CRM is Mobile-Friendly

Sales teams that work in the field require a mobile-friendly CRM. As a rule of thumb, your CRM should work flawlessly on desktops, tablets, and smartphones. Because businesses are adopting nomadic operations, a mobile-friendly CRM allows field agents and reps to access vital information on the go.

This increased flexibility provides the opportunity for businesses to maintain momentum when getting leads, improving customer relationships, and marketing their companies, regardless of where they operate from.

5. Make CRM Adoption Fun

Lastly, if you’re still wondering how to drive CRM user adoption, you might consider turning it into a fun competition. This can be as simple as creating rewards for top performers or teams. Incentivizing employees may provide additional motivation and encourage faster adoption and familiarization of your new CRM platform. Setting goals for your employees that align with company objectives can prove beneficial for overall business success and employee satisfaction.

Talk to serviceminder

serviceminder is a comprehensive and world-class CRM platform for home service businesses and franchises. It helps acquire more leads, tracks customers’ lifecycles, and grows businesses. From online deposits and payments to campaign budgeting, fleet monitoring, and more, serviceminder allows you to effectively track and service customers.

Our software centralizes and automates information and processes and is even compatible with Quickbooks, which makes accounting easier, so you can focus on doing business. serviceminder’s seamless integrations ensure CRM adoption is hassle-free and straightforward. Schedule a demo of our award-winning CRM and experience first-hand how it can boost your company’s bottom line.