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is Integration of legacy databases with eCRM modules worth the effort?

is Integration of legacy databases with eCRM modules worth the effort?

is Integration of legacy databases with eCRM modules worth the effort?

(OP)
Hello, I am a visitor,(didn't see that choice on the sign up?)  with something I hope is a simple question for experts... I'm a managment consultant working with a small call center who is about to implement and offer e-CRM, chat, voice OIP, e-mail managment... incoming and outgoing ..... the plan is to provide 360 degree view of all customer contact.... the question I have is.. has anybody worked with integrating existing "legacy" data bases into this type of technology? So that the existing customer history is integrated to the new software?   Is it thought of as difficult?

If this is not the forum for this type of question, can you tell me where to go, without telling me WHERE TO GO!?


Thanks!
Mary

RE: is Integration of legacy databases with eCRM modules worth the effort?

Mary, I have had some experience in deailing with disparate sources of data, and depending on the structure of the data will depend on the difficulty in re-purposing legacy data.  ETL (Extract Transform & Load) tools do a great job of moving data at the meta or column level, however that is the tip of the mountain.  In order for all the legacy data to be usable with your new CRM you will need a data clenaser or scrubber, that can get down to the record and field level and can re-purpose the data so it is in the proper format to be accepted by your new CRM.  

The choice that you have is common, and taking the name, address and phone from the legacy systems and importing them is probably the easiest route. However the effectiveness and usability of the new CRM could be in jeopardy because it doesn't contain historical customer information.  This is one reason why CRM projects fail in the eyes of upper management.

If upper management is sold on developing the CRM package the way you described then, explain this issue to them and look into data cleansers.  The cost for data cleansing solutions range from 10K to 250K, depending on what you need.  

If you want to check out white papers and what not, I used to work for Vality Technology and data cleansing and re-purposing is all they do, you can check them out at www.vality.com

I hope this helps in your search for the best solution.

RE: is Integration of legacy databases with eCRM modules worth the effort?

(OP)
Hello Matt31,

Thank you very much for your layman's description of the issues at hand.  It clarifies the challenges. Your comments about upper managements' perspective on CRM success is interesting.  I also appreciate the general estimate of data cleanser costs and the link to the white paper. Thank you!!!

Mary

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