When looking for your next CRM solution and provider, start by focusing on your primary requirement...
FLEXIBILITY on how you select your product
Pretty websites and flashy online demos are great...but take a deeper look under the bonnet. You shouldn't feel pressured to make a decision and the process should be 'consultative'.
Does the sales person understand your market? Are they listening to what makes you unique? Consider that the supplier may only have one product to offer and thus leads the conversation with their requirements, not yours. A consultative approach where the supplier cares about your specific requirements is likely to take a few weeks, not a few hours.
FLEXIBILITY on what they'll share with you
Choosing the right product is one thing, but will your supplier be around to support your growth in a way that suits you? Do they offer an 0800 support line or charge for support? Can you even speak to a support team? Do you have access to account managers and training for free and are they willing to share their experiences on what goes wrong as well as what's gone right? Ask for references that are similar in size and sector to you and run a Companies House check on the supplier, many have come and gone over recent years. This is a decision for your head, not your gut.
FLEXIBILITY on how you pay for the service
CLOUD solutions can appear cheap but over 36 months they'll be at least twice as expensive as BUYING the solution outright. As a start-up your budget may not stretch too far initially, but see if you can move from a Rental/Cloud/SaaS, model to a local laptop/server when it makes sense to do so.
The fact is, that unless you have a crystal ball you've probably no idea what your requirement will be in the next few years. If the supplier you are talking to doesn't offer flexibility, walk away.
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