• Assessing the possible potential of implement [sic] a CRM system into the University of Chester

      Page, Steve; Azadpour, Amir (University of Chester, 2007-09)
      Today technologies and computer based systems are helping managers to achieve their organisation goals. However, strategies and tactics which organisations have to adopt depend on the short or long- term plans and visions which change the concept of using models and technologies in information system areas in an organisation. Managers believe that the HI sector is changing. Students are becoming more demanding and looking for added value from their education. Also Universities are now having to become more competitive and responsive to the needs of students. Nowadays, because of demand, there is a requirement for HEI's to be competitive and their future business success depends on developing beneficial relationships with student. One of the most useful systems for this reason is CRM. Today more than 80 Higher Educational Institutes (HEI) in the UK use all or some functions of the CRM system (Agresso newsletter, 2007). It seems that, in order to achieve their goals, senior managers in HEI's should integrate systems to collect, keep and use historic data and use students life cycle to be able to generate types of data which informs their marketing strategy. This strategy will also feed into a HEI's strategic plan. The ability to develop successful customer relationships lies in an organisation's ability to understand its customers and their needs. Indeed, organisations need to identify "real customers and individual basis" and communicate with them appropriately (Mitussis, 2006). The collection, analysis and use of information to identify, understand and meet customer need is crucial to the successful implementation of a CRM system. As a result, technology, initially in data base format, is widely regarded as a core component of CRM as the data used aims to build a long-term connection between the company and customers. As such, CRM can be regarded as a "business strategy that uses information technology to provide an enterprise with a comprehensive, reliable and integrated view of its customer base" (Zikmund et al., 2002). This documentary -based study uses qualitative method for data collection from utilising CRM for University of Chester as a case study. The researcher used empirical research and 3 exploratory study in order to discuss the possible potential of utilising the CRM system with regards to vision and strategy in the University of Chester. Indeed, to examine other HEI's experience implementing CRM systems, the researcher chose Roehampton University because it had similar characteristics, demographics and background to the case study. In order to avoid the problems and decrease the risk of the implementation CRM system in the University of Chester with regards to plans and activities which an organisation has to do, the following are the recommended key steps to a successful CRM strategy: Strategic context. The organisation should understand how CRM fits into the context of the company's overall business strategy, Capabilities assessment. The assessment is to be done to confirm the company's current CRM capabilities. Business case development. The organisation needs a good reason to implement CRM other than simply following new technology trends. Implementation plan creation. Create and execute a plan which clearly defines how to achieve the goal and execute it. (Nguyen, 2007) Competitive advantages that organisations could gain from CRM systems include the following: increase in customer loyalty, superior service, superior information gathering and knowledge sharing and organisational learning. This study highlights potential benefits, limitations and general features about a CRM system at strategic level that might be taken into consideration in case CRM system is be implemented in University of Chester.