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We are planning to build a CRM software for SMBs. CRM will be on cloud and intended to publish as SaaS.

I am responsible from analyzing task. And I do not want to make a sedentary analyzing for our planned CRM software. I want to go out and talk with SMBs to get their requirements, ideas, short-coming features on their existing software so on.

What we'd like to achieve by building a CRM software are:

  • Organizing and automating customer data,
  • Time efficiency (for fulfillment of system tasks),
  • Creating a CRM which can be used by wide range of business types(SMBs),
  • Increasing customer satisfaction through customer centric approach,
  • Increasing and assessing sales through well-desingned pipeline management system to utilize sales force.
  • Process improvement for existing CRM softwares.

What I would like to ask you is what type of questions should I ask to potential customers related to our business goals above to get useful outcomes?

I strongly believe that professionals who worked on CRM projects will make perfect suggestions to me. Because they learned a lot from "failure" and "success". And this suggestions will be a perfect road-map to make a flying kick-off!

closed as too broad by Matt Obee, Charles Wesley, Joshua Barron, Graham Herrli, greenforest Aug 11 '14 at 20:51

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • I edited my question. Why is it still at "on hold" status? Is it still too broad? – latefreak Aug 12 '14 at 12:44
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I designed many applications in many CRM systems from user research, business goals to usability testing and / or suggesting design improvements. Your question is very broad.

I would suggest you to "define your business goals clearly" first. They may change after research but having a goal in mind helps you to frame your approach. E.g. increasing customer satisfaction through customer centric approach. Avoiding duplicate work we create in the system. İncreasing completion time efficiency, therefore completing an action in shorter time, increasing error rates.

If you are starting anew, think of your goals as: allowing customers to get the same high quality service by all employees, low error rate, etc...

Take these goals and observe how people experience those in the current system.

Then ask them questions. You will realize that your observations will be different than what you will hear from them. E.g. What kind of operations you feel like you do over and over again? What do you think is the piece of info "you would have liked someone had told you before you found it out the hard way" ? What do you think stops you the most during the day? How do you deal with the most annoying customer? :)

Observation is very very important. I always observe one more round before I reach my findings.

Never leave user research out of the process. It is very essential to include concept proofing through prototypes, walk through's, storyboarding...

I hope this helps.

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    Thank you for your detailed answer. I am agrree with you on importance of defining business goals. You clarified them substantially as the matter of fact. In addition to your defining above, we'd like to achive organizing and automating customer data in a practical way. I am also agree with you on observation so I need a lot of well-balanced questions. I will try to bound my question by editing. I hope you suggest me more more questions in addition to mines. – latefreak Aug 12 '14 at 6:14
  • if you add this description to your question, they might put your question out of hold. – Esin Aug 12 '14 at 6:58
  • I did actually. I edited my question but it is still on hold status. – latefreak Aug 12 '14 at 7:54

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