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Determinations of the Failures and Requirements Essay

This chapter will present the background of the problem and aims at ensuring that a concise problem definition is developed. The chapter also presents the research questions, the rationale of the study and the significance of the research. This chapter is important for it provide insight on the need and usefulness of the study.

Background
There have been various changes in the business environment that is primarily a result of the increase in the levels of competition in various business segments. Increase in the levels of competition is a result of various changes in the operational environment emanating from increase in business activities and changing market demands (Foss, & Stone 2002).

It is noteworthy that increased investment in the financial services sector which is a response to increased demand for financial services is a cycle that has led to increased competition within this sector. The high level of uncertainty associated with global financial markets also places immense pressure on financial service providers to develop strategies that will ensure that they are well protected during financial downtimes (Blomqvist, Dahl, & Haeger 2002).

Developing strong brand names, extensive marketing and formulating strong customer relationship management systems are some of the strategies that businesses have adopted so

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as to improve their positioning in the market (Cheverton, Foss, Hughes, & Stone 2005). A critical review of these strategies reveals that they are aimed at developing a strong reputation in the market and development of strong competitive advantage. Evidently, operations in the current financial markets are complex and place multiple requirements on businesses to ensure that they continually improve their internal systems.

Customer relationship management is commonly viewed as a system wide strategy for managing and improving interaction between a company and its clients. Use of technology to organize and synchronize business processes involved in marketing, technical support and customer service defines CRM. It is noteworthy that the overall goal in customer relationship management includes finding, attracting and nurturing clients. Evidently such efforts go a long way in improving a firm’s positioning in the market and may also aid the attainment of competitive advantage.

Customer relationship management within organizations has evolved from simple deployment of software to a holistic company wide strategy that embraces different problems faced by all company stakeholders. This change is a result of the realization that the design, structure and implementation of a customer relationship management systems is largely influential on the effects that it has on attainment of overall organizational goals (Fjermestad, & Romano 2006).

Furthermore, a process level abstraction that is often adopted in designing customer relationship management systems aims at ensuring that the processes are carried out effectively which reduces operational costs. Thus increased adoption of customer relationship management is a result of heightened realization of the need for developing competitive advantage within different market segments. In the financial service sector, the realization is developing due to the effect of markets crashes and high levels of competition. Understanding what entails effective customer relationship management system and common failures in implementing such systems present an avenue for ensuring that this system is well designed and implemented by financial sector firms.

Problem Definition
There has been tremendous change in the business environments that has resulted in increased pressure on businesses to ensure that they develop effective internal systems and internal strategies that would ensure they are well positioned to harness opportunities and address threats in their environments. Furthermore a background review of the problem area reveals that the business environment is highly dynamic which places pressure on businesses to ensure that their strategies are in line with the requirements emanating from external variables.

Failure to develop effective customer relationship management not only affects the management of interaction between organizational stakeholders but may also result in the loss of profitability by financial service providers. Poor service delivery and the associated poor reputation are threats that financial service providers try to avoid at all costs for they have multiple implications that affect general operations and attainment of long term goals.

This implies that financial service sector providers have to be aware of the best practices in implementing their customer relationship management systems and the common reasons for failure of such initiatives within financial service providers to be able to develop effective internal strategies. Owing to the dependence on the highly dynamic technology in developing customer relationship management system and changes that are commonly recorded in business environment, continuous review of the failures and best practices in implementing customer relationship management systems within the financial service sector is inevitable. This is one of the reasons for the formulation of the study that will focus on the best practices and failures in implementation of CRM systems among financial service providers.

Research Question
The following research questions will be addressed in the thesis:

a)      What are the common mistakes and failure in the implementation of customer relationship management systems within the financial service sector?

b)      What are the requirements and best practices in implementing customer relationship management systems within the financial service sector?

Rationale and Significance
The rationale for developing the study is the clearly developed need for continuous research on the challenges and best practices in implementing customer relationship management within the financial services sector. Findings from new studies may aid highlight new challenges and help organizations develop robust internal systems thus strengthening their operations and improving their robustness.

Findings from the study are significant for they will provide a clear guideline on the challenges that financial service providers currently face when designing and running their CRM system. Furthermore, the study will provide a set of guidelines that businesses can base their CRM system development and implementation. It is important to note that the findings may also provide a basis for further research aimed at improving customer relationship management among financial service providers.

Chapter Two: Methodology
The methodology adopted in the thesis is influential on the integrity of the results and may affect its validity and reliability. It is important that the methodology be designed with consideration on the importance attached to ethicality, validity and reliability. This chapter provides an overview of the methodology used in the thesis with key considerations on the design, approach, ethicality, validity and reliability.

Research Design
A qualitative research design was adopted in the study. Decision on the research design focused mainly on the problem background. Customer relationship management is an organization wide endeavour and therefore consideration on various processes is important in determining the requirements, failures and best practices in customer relationship management. This implies that the research design adopted in the thesis must provide support for the adoption of multiple perspectives in analyzing failure of customer relationship management among financial service providers. A qualitative research design provides a suitable basis for researchers to ensure that varied dimensions are adopted in addressing the research problem.

Research Approach
The research approach is governed by the research design adopted in the thesis. The thesis questions involve determining the best practices and challenges that financial service providers face in customer relationship management. Evidently, the research spans various issues that have to be considered in developing the research design. The study focuses on the financial service sector and therefore data collection will be designed such that this area is addressed.

The thesis questions will be answered with the use of an extensive literature review of relevant research material. The research approach has been adopted mainly because it allows for collection of data and literature from various resources and allows for the development of multiple perspectives on the research questions (Thomas 2003).

Use of material from various authors reduce the risks of bias and improves the accuracy of the findings. However, the overall integrity of the findings developed through this research approach is largely dependent in the accuracy and validity afforded by the resources used in the literature review. It is noteworthy that customer relationship management is an area that is fast gaining audience and has been addressed by various researchers. However, the study focuses on CRM in the financial service sector which is delimiter in choosing the resources that will be reviewed in the study.

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