Siebelisation

This weekend I spent several hours reading a thesis on the implementation of CRM Customer Relations Management. The graduate student had done thorough research both by digging through the multitude off available journals on the internet and conducting surveys within the branch office that gave him his thesis subject. The regional office did not walk in pace with the crm plans from headquarters. What caused the delay in implementation and how could this be turned around?
As a regional office choices had allready been made and headquarters had decided that Siebel was the software that would facilitated the crm strategy.

While reading the thesis it became more and more clear how brilliant the Siebel organization does it’s own CRM. They have created a self fulfilling prophecy by setting up a network of hundred so called partners who spread the message. They actually established a complete Siebelisation but how does that work?
The moment a company decides to implement Siebel as crm instrument Siebel becomes THE equivalent of CRM within the company. It starts by handing the Siebel software to the IT department. Next everybody that is involved, one way or another, with customer contact has to get access to the software and has to start entering information into Siebel. It is like this new employee called ‘Siebel’ enters the firm. From the top it is promoted that this new colleague is THE solution for future business, more revenue, higher service levels. All the things the existing employees were not able to establish so far will become true with this ‘Siebel’. but Siebel is not a new employee even though it’s name is spread and introduced like one. Siebel is a direct colleague from this other guy that runs the company sometimes but does not appear in the face book and phonelist, ‘Murphy’.

the exiting thing is that the management expects that all the hardworking employees start sharing their valuable customer knowledge with this new guy ‘Siebel’ but they do not know exact what Siebel will and can do with the information nor do they know what the management and Siebel have made for exact plans. Will Siebel braindrain us and will we loose our jobs?
Whenever I come in a situation where I have to implement a crm system and it turns out that Siebel is THE ultimate toolbox to fulfill the plans I will definitely NOT Siebelize the company. I will come with another approach that makes clear from the start that Siebel is not the solution for success neither the excuse for failure. Siebel is just an instrument to make people perform better towards customers and facilitate customer intimacy like we all know so well when we meet it every now and then when we are customers ourselves.

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