Implementing in the business world over the past

Implementing a secure cloud-based
ERP/CRM focussing on document management systems for Law Firms

 

Literature
Review

 

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

 

The
concept of customer relationship management (CRM), which first emerged in 1956
(e.g., the

segmentation
of discrete customer groups), has played a vital role in the business world
over the past six to ten years (Nairn, 2002). With management concentrating on
the two aspects of relationship marketing (specifically one-to-one marketing

techniques)
(Peppers & Rogers, 1993; Peppers et al., 1999) and

market
orientation (focused on collecting, analysing and disseminating large
quantities

of
customer data), CRM technology has become an important element.

It has
experienced rapid growth owing to three principal reasons: (a) intense
competition for customers among businesses, (b)

the
economics related to retaining customers (i.e., life-time value) and (c) advancement
in technology

(Buttle,
2004; Goodhue et al., 2002; Karimi et al., 2001; Ling & Yen, 2001; Winer,

2001).

The
concept of CRM has been given numerous definitions at different levels, for
instance functionally and managerially, as well as technically (Doherty &
Lockett, 2007; Ngai, 2005;

Sathish,
Pan, & Raman, 2002; Wright et al., 2002). Managerially,

CRM serves
as a vital business

approach and philosophy, given the fact that the concept is
immanently pivoted on the customer (e.g., Almquist et al., 2002;
Beckett-Camarata, Camarata, &

Barker,
1998; Chang, Yen, Young, & Ku, 2002). Academics specialising in the field
of marketing perceive “CRM as

a
concept that adds practical value to the meaning of customer orientation”
(Wright et

al.,
2002, p. 340), which assists in the operationalisation of MO and in the
creation 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 researchers
who specialist in information technology – in relation to CRM – seem essentially
to 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

 

Rigby
et al. (2002a) argue that CRM cannot easily be defined by business managers and
directors. Greenberg (2002) cited ten definitions by top executives from
software

development
business corporations which were all different. In its early phase, the concept
of CRM was defined as one that was predicated on two aspects: the attraction of
customers and retaining them in the long term (Ling & Yen, 2001; The Data
Warehousing Institute,

2000;
Wyner, 1999). As a business approach, CRM has also acquired a widely accepted
definition according to which “CRM

is an
approach or business strategy which provides seamless integration of every area
of

business
that touches the customer” (Sathish et al., 2002, p. 545). According to other
definitions, CRM plays a role in maximising profit, whereby “economically
valuable” customers are won and retained and “economically invaluable” customers
are eliminated

(Pan
& Lee, 2003; Romano, 2000; Romano & Fjermestad, 2001). Some researchers
have followed a more all-inclusive and integrative line towards the concept, attempting
a definition that would encompass CRM’s link to technology and its role as a business
approach (Bose, 2002; Buttle,

2004;
Dibb, 2001; Goodhue et al., 2002; J. Kim, Suh, & Hwang, 2003; Sathish et
al.,

2002; The Data
Warehousing Institute, 2000). This definition helps create a better awareness
of CRM’s dual aspects that ought to be considered when appraising whether executed
applications of CRM succeeded or failed. The assessment of each aspect
separately will likely lead to an incomplete understanding.