Implementing a secure cloud-basedERP/CRM focussing on document management systems for Law Firms LiteratureReview Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Theconcept of customer relationship management (CRM), which first emerged in 1956(e.g., thesegmentationof discrete customer groups), has played a vital role in the business worldover the past six to ten years (Nairn, 2002). With management concentrating onthe two aspects of relationship marketing (specifically one-to-one marketingtechniques)(Peppers & Rogers, 1993; Peppers et al., 1999) andmarketorientation (focused on collecting, analysing and disseminating largequantitiesofcustomer data), CRM technology has become an important element.
It hasexperienced rapid growth owing to three principal reasons: (a) intensecompetition for customers among businesses, (b)theeconomics related to retaining customers (i.e., life-time value) and (c) advancementin technology (Buttle,2004; Goodhue et al., 2002; Karimi et al., 2001; Ling & Yen, 2001; Winer,2001).
Theconcept of CRM has been given numerous definitions at different levels, forinstance functionally and managerially, as well as technically (Doherty &Lockett, 2007; Ngai, 2005;Sathish,Pan, & Raman, 2002; Wright et al., 2002). Managerially,CRM servesas a vital businessapproach and philosophy, given the fact that the concept isimmanently pivoted on the customer (e.g., Almquist et al., 2002;Beckett-Camarata, Camarata, &Barker,1998; Chang, Yen, Young, & Ku, 2002). Academics specialising in the fieldof marketing perceive “CRM asaconcept that adds practical value to the meaning of customer orientation”(Wright etal.,2002, p.
340), which assists in the operationalisation of MO and in thecreation of marketing value (e.g., Aspinall,Nancarrow,& Stone, 2001; Reinartz & Kumar, 2002; Rheault & Sheridan, 2002;Ryals,2005;Srivastava, Shervani, & Fahey, 1999). Meanwhile, the main interests of researcherswho specialist in information technology – in relation to CRM – seem essentiallyto be the two elements of technology and implementation (e.g., Chalmeta,2006;Cooper, Watson, Wixom, & Goodhue, 2000; Gefen & Ridings, 2002; Romano&Fjermestad,2001; Wells & Hess, 2002). CRM Definition Rigbyet al.
(2002a) argue that CRM cannot easily be defined by business managers anddirectors. Greenberg (2002) cited ten definitions by top executives fromsoftwaredevelopmentbusiness corporations which were all different. In its early phase, the conceptof CRM was defined as one that was predicated on two aspects: the attraction ofcustomers and retaining them in the long term (Ling & Yen, 2001; The DataWarehousing Institute,2000;Wyner, 1999). As a business approach, CRM has also acquired a widely accepteddefinition according to which “CRMis anapproach or business strategy which provides seamless integration of every areaofbusinessthat touches the customer” (Sathish et al., 2002, p. 545). According to otherdefinitions, CRM plays a role in maximising profit, whereby “economicallyvaluable” customers are won and retained and “economically invaluable” customersare eliminated(Pan& Lee, 2003; Romano, 2000; Romano & Fjermestad, 2001). Some researchershave followed a more all-inclusive and integrative line towards the concept,attempting a definition that would encompass CRM’s link to technology and itsrole as a business approach (Bose, 2002; Buttle,2004;Dibb, 2001; Goodhue et al.
, 2002; J. Kim, Suh, & Hwang, 2003; Sathish etal.,2002;The Data Warehousing Institute, 2000). This definition helps create a betterawareness of CRM’s dual aspects that ought to be considered when appraisingwhether executed applications of CRM succeeded or failed. The assessment ofeach aspect separately will likely lead to an incomplete understanding. Intheir definitions, Vendor (e.g.
, Oracle, PeopleSoft, SAP, andSiebel)and specialist magazines (e.g., destinationCRM.
com, CRM Magazine, andCRMToday) chiefly concentrate on the profit that the applications of CRMtechnology can potentially produce. For instance: “CRM…is a company-widebusiness strategy designedtoreduce costs and increase profitability by solidifying customer loyalty”(destinationCRM,2002).Fromanother perspective, CRM technology serves as a “glue” between “frontoffice”(i.e., sales, support and marketing) and “back office” (i.e., ERP and/or orderfulfilment)applications in relation to sales and marketing, by providing instruments forthorough analytical examination andmodelling,in addition to technology infrastructure, with the aim of flawlessly creating asingle customer facing unit that is characterised by cohesionand comprehensiveness (Buttle, 2004; I.
J. Chen & Popovich,2003).The concept of CRM is currently perceived more in relation to the utilisationof technology and information in the management of customer relations. Based onexisting literature, the aspects and factors that define CRM technologyconcentrate generally on the utilisation of IT for four purposes: attractingcustomers and retaining them in the long term; devising a lasting businessapproach; assisting in the application of CRM processes; and boosting profit inthe long term. Inthis study, the more all-inclusive approach towards the concept of CRM is adopted,which reflects the perception by Gummesson (2004), and Ling and Yen (2001) of CRMas a business strategy that is focused on customers, shaped through thecompany’s market orientation (MO) and executed through the utilisation of informationtechnology. CRM specifically involves a process where adequate relationshipswith all customers, of benefit to both sides, are identified, accepted andestablished(i.e.
, RM) by employing technology with the aim of maximising value for boththe company and the customers. Introduce CRM and e-CRM from different perspectives The conceptof CRM has been interpreted differently by many researchers, with some viewingit as procedures adopted by firms for the management of their communications withexisting and potential clients. From this perspective, CRM is intended to buildand preserve lasting relationships with both existing and potential clients, aprocess where information about the clients is gathered, kept, retrieved andanalytically examined (Bose, 2002) (Chou et al, 2002) (Kotorov, 2003) (Arndtand Gersten, 2001) (Schellong,2003)(Levine, 2000) (Swift, 2000) (Rigby et al., 2002) (Ryals and Payne, 2001)(Greenberg,2002).
Accordingto other researchers, CRM is only an IT process of enhanced value, throughwhich the different capabilities of the company are identified, enhanced,integrated and focused on, in line with the actual needs of clients (Dafoulasand Essawi, 2006). These researchers are also of the view that CRM should involveproviding a profitable long-term value to well-established current clients aswell as potential ones by employing software, and usually internet capabilities AA1 (Starkeyand Woodcock, 2002) (Xu, et al., 2002) (Frow and Payne, 2004).Giventhat it views CRM as a mix betweenBetweeninformation technology and marketing, the latter definition appears to bebetter, as it illustrates the important role played by CRM in ensuring lastingand mutually beneficial relations with clients. CRM is a customer-focused businessstrategy whereby customers can be given bespoke treatment by tailoring the offerstotheir actual needs. Thus, theemployment of advancedTechnologyis likely to boost profitability.
The Electronic Customer RelationshipManagement (e-CRM), which has been developing, appears to be the upcomingtrend. E-CRM is a combination of methods employed automatically with thepurpose of collecting, preserving, effectively utilising and analyticallyexamining customer information (Steinmueller, 2002) (Turban, 2006). Saiddifferently, it is a method where internet is employed for the creation of fruitfulrelationships clients, vendors, staff, investors as well as any other stakeholder(e-CRM Group, 2003:2). ForresterResearch, 2007, defined e-CRM as an internet-focused strategy that transformsCRM transactions into the internet so as to coordinate customers interactionswithin business events and communication channels. A further piece of researchundertaken at e-World Research outlines e-CRM as being a business strategy thatis undertaken via the Internet. This incorporates a range of tasks for evolvingand maintaining customers by enhancing their sense of loyalty and commitment,which consequently enhances the sales revenue of a business (eWorld Research,2003). Furthermore, e-CRM was defined by the e-CRM Group in 2003 as being toregulate associated correspond via communication channels within the company, resultingin effective interaction between customers and workers. Havingexamined the contrasting e-CRM definitions that have been proposed, it appearsthat it is becoming more common for CRM and e-CRM to connect varying elementsof customer data and consequently make it more straightforward and accurate toundertake everyday business process.
A variety of services are offered tocustomers online by E-CRM, including the ability to make orders, requestsupplies or file complaints. E-CRM customers are provided with an effectiveform of access to acquire regulation over their accounts; this access isanytime, anyplace. It is for this reason that CRM is predominantly regarded asbeing a value-added method.
CRM IT Operational Model At itscore, CRM functionality comprises of contact manager software that isresponsible for obtaining, preserving and recovering customer data within anindividual configuration, such as Microsoft Outlook – Contact application(Zikmund et al., 2003). Additionally, CRM is comprised of a range ofcomplicated, incorporated IT aspects including information warehouse and marts,and analytical devices that are employed to obtain and scrutinise data fromvarious inbound touchpoints, with access to various outbound touchpoints alsoavailable, such as MySAP andOracle)(Turban, McLean et al.
, 2003). The most intricate processes incorporate alternativefunctional aspects of the organisation, such as integrating ERP) (Greenberg,2002; O’Brien, 2004). Thereare three core elements of CRM that can be utilised individually, introduced graduallyor incorporated from the start – analytical, operational, and collaborativeCRM. CRM Strategic Model TheCRM strategic framework is premised on the perspective and beneficial andadvantageous CRM stems from synchronised cross-functional strategies andactions in a business (Payne & Frow, 2004, 2005, 2006).
There is coordinationbetween the five business processes – the control of information, theexamination of performance, multi-channel integration, the establishment ofvalue and the progression of strategy – that link to present the mostsignificant benefit to customers and shareholders. There is indication in Figure2.5 of the association between the varying processes involved in business,stressing the interrelated and iterative nature of CRM. CRM Process Model Thispart outlines a conventional CRM approach and emphasises the prospectivedisparity between the CRM process and the strategy of relationship marketing.
CRM process are a significant element of the development of informationtechnology to sustain an enhance business operations and their interactionswith customers (O’Brien, 2004; Turban, McLean et al., 2003). CRM technology isa form of IT application that is is comprised of three elementary subsystems –an input element, a data base element, and a delivery element (Goodhue et al.,2002; Zikmund et al., 2003). Amongst the other aspects that might be relevantare campaign management and analysis mechanisms (Ling & Yen, 2001; The DataWarehousing Institute, 2000). There is written discourse on this subject thatforms a distinction between CRM and e-CRM (electronic CRM) (e.g.
, Fjermestad& Romano, 2003; Romano, 2000); other writers regard e-CRM as supplementingCRM technology within the e-commerce field, as opposed to being an alternativeapplication or tool (Greenberg, 2002; Turban, McLean et al., 2003).Figure2.6 presents a strategy concept of CRM. This firstly entails obtaining customerdata at frequent intervals and secondly utilising such information to regulatecustomer contact via processes such as marketing strategies and direct salesoffers. The third aspect is the evolution of business and marketing approaches,the fourth Is the advancement of marketing strategies, and the fifth involvesassessing success, whilst improving the customer database (M.
L.Roberts,2003; Zablah et al., 2004). The main perspective for this approach is that the organisationundertakes the compilation of data frequently, improving this database andusing the data gathered effectively. This enables information regarding thecustomer to be compiled, maintained and presented to individuals contactingcustomers. This handling of customer data enables more marketing programmes tobe established and undertaken. Responses are acquired from the marketplace,with customer information being modified and improved, whilst new data andstrategies are also formed. This is an iterative and regular CRM process and isakin to the approach of the knowledge management systems (KMS) (e.
g., Alavi, 2001; Shoemaker, 2001; Zablah et al., 2004).Theconcept has similarity with the foundation point of market orientation referredto beforehand.
This is because the core elements of an MO organisation are itsconstant compilation of customer information, its collection of data related tothe performance of its opposition, the distribution of data across differentelements of the organisation, and the use of the data to enhance customer benefit(Kerin et al., 2003; Kohli et al., 1993; Narver & Slater, 1990).
Yet thereare various limitations to this process including the lack of direct connectionto other aspects of the organisation such as operations, finance and IT, andthe emphasis on the organisation instead of the consumer (cf. Kapoulas, Ellis,& Murphy, 2004). The conventional marketing product emphasis, devisingbenefit propositions from the 4P marketing mix concept, (i.e., process c inFigure 2.
6), indicates a shortcoming in the research. The conventional CRMconcept does not sufficiently allow for the broader aspects of relationshipvalue and the possible influence of the organisation’s MO referred topreviously (Grönroos, 1990). Current CRM Use Currently,CRM is predominantly utilised by sales, sales support and customer servicepersonnel (including call centres and telemarketers) to present a united andstrategic contact point to consumers. Additionally, it is utilised as amarketing strategy in an attempt to target distinct consumers, assist with theprogression of marketing strategies, and help in monitoring the actions of thecustomers (Ling & Yen, 2001; Shoemaker, 2001; Speier & Venkatesh,2002).
CRMdepends on the close cooperation of the IT, and sales and marketing departments;the advantages of CRM will otherwise not come to full fruition. However, thishas not always been the situation (Ryals & Knox, 2001; Yu, 2001).Furthermore, and compliant with the MO outlook, CRM compiles, regulates andimplements extensive consumer data and therefore is possibly a significantelement of the knowledge of an organisation (Alavi & Leidner, 2001;Davenport & Klahr,1998;Kerin et al., 2003; Richard, 2003; Zablah et al., 2004).CRMtechnology benefits the organisation by increasing the ease with whichindividuals can conduct business, placing the emphasis on the end-customer forthe goods and services offered by the business, changing business activity tocomply with the end-customer’s perspective, establishing an extensive,developing business structure, and increasing the loyalty of the customer base(Turban, Rainer et al.
, 2003). Additionally, CRM processes additionally havethe capacity to become a crucial aspect of “business fulfilment,” enhancingadvantage to the consumer by incorporating all the aspects of the company,including sales, distribution and invoicing (Markowitz, 2002).Thissaid, as indicated extensively below, there has been varying responses to theutilisation of the CRM system, within both the academic field (e.g., Karimi etal., 2001; Ling & Yen, 2001; Speier & Venkatesh, 2002) and popularwriting (e.g.
, Arnold, 2002; Casselman, 2003; Le Pla, 2002; Markowitz, 2002).One of the difficulties faced by the CRM Industry is the “overpromising andunderdelivering”according to the PeopleSoft Chief Executive and President Craig Conway.Consequently, it is regarded that CRM insufficiently fulfils the businessrequirements of the modern day environment (Markowitz, 2002). CRM Issues WhilstCRM is compliant with marketing theory in some key ways (Abbott, Stone, , 2001; Kotler, 2003; Ling & Yen, 2001), is effective for an organisation(Buttle, 2004; Greenberg, 2002; Zikmund et al., 2003) and widely accessibletoday (Turban, McLean et al., 2003), there are still significant problems thatit encounters today (Adebanjo, 2003; Arnold, 2002; Davids, 1999; Nairn, 2002;O’Brien, 2004; Raman & Pashupati, 2004; Rheault & Sheridan, 2002; Turban,McLean et al.
, 2003). A number of popular business magazines (Le Pla, 2002; Markowitz,2002), in addition to commercial research groups (IDC, 2002), have producedcritical reviews regarding the utilisation of CRM technology, emphasising thelimited commercial advantages acquired from extensive CRM investment. EffectiveCRM technology utilisation and employment necessitates apparent, organised andlong-term senior management involvement and substantial changes in the companyif all the potential advantages are to be enjoyed (Bohling et al.
, 2006;Casselman, 2003; Fleischer, 2002; Ling & Yen, 2001; Yu, 2001).Theunderpinning objective of CRM technology is to ensure the loyalty of consumersand to increase overall profitability. Yet, it is asserted by the META Group that “55% of all CRM projects don’t produceresults” (R. Davis, 2002; Seligman, 2002). Research into 1,500 organisationsindicated that 91% are considering or have used CRM resolutions but 41% ofcompanies with CRM projects had encountered substantial difficulties withutilising this (The Data Warehousing Institute, 2000). R. Davis (2002) assertedthat as many as 70% of firms has not accrued any advantage from using the CRMtechnology or have not succeeded in fulfilling the elementary objectives of theorganisation, such as ROI. To some degree, this might indicate the problems indetecting and synching the suitable CRM investments andreturns(Ang & Buttle, 2002).
Further research suggests that 20% of seniorexecutives stated that CRM strategies had not succeeded in providing profitablegrowth and there were instances where harm had in fact been caused torelationships with customers that were already held (Rigby et al., 2002a).CRMvendors have responded to these criticisms by conducting improvements,emphasising the need for further features, efficiency and advantages (Songini, 2002).CRM”success” is not suitably defined within writing related to this field. To someextent, this can be considered to reflect the problems in coming to a consensusregarding a definition of the term; the alternative strategies used in CRMresearch are also contributory factors. The predominant emphasis of the ITresearch is on measuring and providing an awareness of the difficultiesencountered with utilising the CRM system (e.
g., Brown & Vessey, 2003;Goodhueet al., 2002; Plakoyiannaki & Tzokas, 2002), major success elements (e.g.,Bose,2002; H.-W.
Kim et al., 2002; Romano, 2000), and enhancing the implementationof CRM (Ahn, Kim, & Han, 2003). The effectiveness of CRM has beencalculated by other scholars in terms of the aspects of the quality of theinformation and the systems, the feedback from customers, and the adherence andutilisation of the DeLone and McLean IS Success Model(DeLone& McLean, 1992, 2003; H.-W.
Kim et al., 2002). Brown and Vessey (2003, p.66)outlined the IT viewpoint regarding the effectiveness of utilising CRM byreferring to: “an up-and-running system with agreed-upon requirements deliveredwithinschedule and budget.” There have only between a limited number of empiricalresearch that has tried to directly connect the effectiveness of CRM with theperformance of a company or relationships, using measurement tools such asretention or market share (e.g., Croteau & Li, 2003; J.
W.Kim etal., 2004).Thisconflicts with market research, which has predominantly emphasised theinfluence of CRM upon customer relationship aspects (e.
g., Day, 2000; Garbarino&Johnson,1999; Lemon et al., 2002; Reinartz & Kumar, 2003).
This does not suggestthat marketing researchers have overlooked the prospective elements of CRMrelating to the company’s performance; they have discovered, for instance, thatCRM technology generally favourably impacts upon business performance andaspects relating to customer satisfaction (e.g., Gummesson, 2004;Raman& Pashupati, 2004; Reinartz et al.
, 2004; Srinivasan & Moorman, 2005).Theaim of CRM marketing research is to more directly connect success toorganisation performance indicators, whilst additionally reviewing the overlapof RM utilisation and IT efficiencies (e.g., Gummesson, 2004; Lemon et al.,2002; Peppard, 2000;Reinartzet al., 2004). The management literature seems to take a more overallperspective of CRM “success”, placing emphasis on the way in which CRM can beutilised as a catalyst for change to initiate the progression of a company(Rigby & Ledingham, 2004; Seybold, 2001) or to assist with organisationalprocesses aimed to be of benefit to the customer (Reinartz & Kumar, 2002;Winer, 2001; Zeithaml, Rust, &Lemon,2001). The literature present states that CRM “success” can stem from effectiveutilisation of the CRM system (Brown & Vessey, 2003; Ling & Yen, 2001),thecapacity of CRM to assist with the customer facing elements of an MOorganisation process (Gummesson, 2004; Raman & Pashupati, 2004), andenhancing economic results (Reinartz et al.
, 2004).It isclear that the disappointing results outlined for CRM utilisation can to someextent by attributed to the contradictory CRM concepts and associated research.Some elements connected to CRM success are the failings to distinguish, examineand scrutinise CRM technology aspects aside from CRM strategic, organisationaland business elements, to accurate distinguish CRM investment, and to observeand assess the dependent variables, such as loyalty, profitability andretention (Ang & Buttle, 2006; J. Kim et al., 2003; Reinartz et al.
, 2004).Studies into CRM have generally focused on enhanced profitability andperformance, and figures relating to customer retention, with limited emphasison assessing relationship progress(Aspinall et al., 2001; Hirschowitz, 2001). Thescarce reports regarding CRM achievement have largely placed emphasis on theeffectiveness of project management, enhanced data quality, and strategicpreparation for CRM utilisation (Bohling et al., 2006; Bose, 2002; Kennedy, Kelleher,& Quigley, 2006; Nguyen et al., 2007; Yu, 2001). Other writers contemplatethe foundation of CRM evaluation and success as a customer intimacy aspect thatbelieve that customers ought to have the capacity to identify some quantifiablegrowth as a result of effective CRM technology utilisation (e.g.
, Payne, 2006).Thedifficulties with CRM utilisation have been contrasted with the initial stagesof ERP utilisation, suggesting that soon the aspects making CRM technologyeffective might be better understood and quantifiable indications of successmight be achieved more consistently (Brown & Vessey, 2003; Sheng, 2002;Woodcock & Starkey, 2001; Yu, 2001). Most studies into CRM, whilst placingemphasis on what has to occur within a company for CRM to be utilisedeffectively, (Chalmeta, 2006; Nguyen et al.,2007) do accord with the MO aspectsand business concept referred to previously. Some of the essential elements inCRM utilisation, referred to extensively in the upcoming sections, incorporatea culture focused on the customer, a strategy connected with IT management, anexecutive commitment, and the incorporation of individuals, strategy andtechnology.