Building a Business Case for a CRM Project

Pulling together an effective business case for a CRM solution can be an onerous and daunting task.  What do you include in the case, how do you get buy-in from senior management?  How do you get the teams involved to be engaged and be advocates?

This blog post recommends where to start when putting pen to paper to commence your CRM business case.  It gives clear steps to follow, and at the end of the blog you are invited to download our free ebook – How to Get Buy-in When Building a CRM Business Case : A guide to enable effective CRM, with key tips to build a strong business case and compelling CRM strategy.

Effective Customer Relationship Management (CRM) offers optimised business practise and higher customer satisfaction.  Although CRM is a technology, it is very human centred focusing on relationships and experience.  The experience of CRM users and customer experience.  Mapping your customer journey to the technology is where CRM software starts to show exciting results, and delivers your overall CRM strategy.

CRM solutions provide a great platform to strive for growth and competitive advantage.  If you don’t take advantage of how technology can help you grow, rest assured your competitors will.

The first thing to do when building your business case is to look at what CRM software (like Microsoft Dynamics CRM) will do for your business.  Caltech suggests that you look at the successes Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides in three ways:

  • By acquiring the right customers
  • Retaining existing customers
  • And gaining efficiencies

Your business case must address the following points:

  •  How will CRM support the business?
  • How will CRM support your teams?
  • Will shareholders see value?
  • What’s in it for the leadership team?

By answering these questions you will come up with your key objectives.  Keep your CRM objectives to a maximum of 5 to ensure focus and that your message isn’t diluted.  Communicating these key objectives is crucial, as CRM will only work if everyone is on board to using it, and can see benefits.  Ultimately ‘what’s in it for me?’

Ensure that you have key data metrics in your business case to show CRM’s return on investment.  This can often be difficult to obtain as often there is no base-line data to start from.  So do look around your business to find out what you are measuring and how those measurements are being achieved.   Are there any metrics that link directly to your 5 key objectives?

Get a key sponsor at board level.  Ensure they are backing your CRM initiative and are clear on the 5 objectives.

Do get your teams involved, even at business case time.   Get together a project team.  They will be critical to finding the most compelling 5 business objectives that CRM can achieve for you. What matters to them, how will they become CRM champions to ensure the strategy and software will produce the results you set out to achieve.

It will be really important to have the business behind you at all levels – they will all want CRM and the benefits it gives.

Think about who will be involved in a phase one of a CRM implementation.  Breaking down the CRM project into departments or teams can reduce your risk and stabilise areas before moving to the next function.

Look at your processes.  Are your processes in place and ready to be optimised using Microsoft Dynamics CRM?  We often recommend to look at your best sales person, and your sales person that isn’t performing as well, and look at their processes.  What makes one more successful, and where do you want to focus all the sales team’s efforts so they are all as profitable.


Investment Costs

Don’t skimp on investment.  Pumping and dumping CRM doesn’t work.  There is no silver bullet.  Work with good partners that know CRM.  Ensure that you budget for :

  • Initial implementation costs
  • Design and analysis time
  • Any hardware needs, or if you are looking at in the cloud the software online costs and licensing models
  • Training time
  • Number of people who will want to use CRM
  • Project management time from your business.

A CRM project will take up time from your people as well as your CRM supplier, it will require your focus and effort.


Caltech IT (Caltech CRM) has produced a new ebook : How to Get Buy-in When Building a CRM Business Case : A Guide to Enable Effective CRM with Key Tips to Build a Strong Business Case and Compelling CRM Strategy.

The Business Case for a CRM Project guide covers

  • Why businesses use CRM solutions
  • How to build a CRM case
  • How to scope a CRM project
  • The Investment costs to consider
  • How to choose a CRM provider

As Silver Microsoft Dynamics CRM partners, Caltech CRM is well placed to offer such expert advice.  To download our new ebook click here and download today!

CRM Business Case


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