What does a CRM migration strategy look like and how long will it take?
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What does a CRM migration strategy look like and how long will it take?

Switching to a powerful Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform like HubSpot is a strategic shift towards unlocking the full capabilities a CRM can offer. Maximising the success of moving CRM requires a robust, strategised approach – whatever the quantity of data you’re migrating. 

Having a well-planned strategy in place facilitates a seamless transition, supporting you in adhering to your timelines. Below, explore the core stages in a CRM migration strategy and how long implementation can take, whether you choose in-house resourcing or a consultancy. 


1. Discovery:

Together with key stakeholders, first define the scope of the project, considering your goals, requirements, budget, and timeline. Make sure it’s aligned with overall business objectives to ensure it gets stakeholder buy-in.

  • Goals and vision: Every CRM migration strategy needs defined goals, to guide your approach and keep it on track. Make sure they’re specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). Perhaps you’re looking to capture new leads, improve the overall customer experience, or build stronger relationships.
  • Requirements: What are your CRM software non-negotiables? Consider any key integrations your new system will need to enable. HubSpot for instance, offers a range of powerful native integrations to align your tech stack. If you require more advanced custom integrations, a HubSpot partner agency can help you achieve your goals.
  • Budget: Outline your budget for the project. If you choose to migrate CRM in-house, consider the internal costs associated with this approach, and the time that will be diverted away from other business initiatives.
  • Timeline: Determine a timeline for the CRM migration, considering any existing contracts the project will need to coincide with.

“CRM software can boost sales by 29%, productivity by 34%, and forecast accuracy by 42%. (Finances Online)”


2. Audit:

A data migration strategy starts with a comprehensive audit of your current data and CRM structure. Identify your data sources and evaluate the quality of your data. Poor quality data can undermine your wider CRM strategy, affecting your ability to nurture customer relationships effectively. The auditing phase supports you in deciding what data and customisations need to be carried over to the new system. 

As part of the audit, also consider what integrations you’ll need. Think about the systems you need to connect, whether they have APIs, and how you want data to flow between them. 


3. Data modelling: 

The data modelling step is all about conceptualising how your data will be gathered, stored and used. Having a clear structure when it comes to storing data on your contacts, companies and deals helps to ensure an organised database. 


4. Data cleansing: 

Before migration, it’s crucial to prepare your data. Remove duplicate data and outdated information, ensuring a clean database is carried over to the new software. Accurate data enables marketing and sales teams to focus their efforts on the most impactful leads whilst identifying customer trends to inform future strategies. Without clean data, keeping track of customer interactions and delivering a seamless experience can be a challenge. 


5. Design your import strategy:

A data import strategy will direct the technical approach for moving your data, in line with the software’s core processes and capabilities. Determine any required native or custom integrations that will need to be set up as part of your migration strategy, as well as map out your approach to testing. Performing a test migration before moving all your data will ensure everything is in place, thereby protecting your data and minimising the risk of downtime.


6. Onboarding:

A comprehensive CRM migration strategy should outline your approach to onboarding. CRM onboarding involves the set-up, configuration, and implementation of the new software. Will you be consulting a partner agency or taking it in-house? And how will this decision affect the timeline of your CRM migration? 


Consultancy Onboarding In-house Onboarding
Working with an onboarding consultant like Fuelius can expedite the onboarding process. 

A CRM consultant will keep the project on track with regular check-ins, calls, and sessions. With streamlined methodologies, along with the expertise to resolve complex issues and create custom integrations, a consultant will help drive a faster, seamless migration. 

The length of a consultancy-led CRM migration project is largely dependent on its complexity. Your specific needs and requirements will be discussed in the initial discovery phase. 
Where a CRM consultant will assess your timeline requirements and offer a regimented onboarding roadmap, doing it in-house will mean you set your own pace. 

In-house CRM onboarding can take longer, as other priorities and unexpected issues may cause delays and impact your planned timeline. Similarly, if in-house teams don’t have the necessary technical expertise, they may encounter learning curves and setbacks. Typically, an in-house onboarding takes longer than a consultancy-led project for this reason, and depends on team proficiency and migration complexity. 


7. Training:

User training and engagement strategies are integral aspects of any CRM migration. Ensuring the project succeeds relies on end-users embracing and championing the system. Driving user adoption begins with offering comprehensive training sessions so that end-users feel confident using the software correctly with minimal disruption to everyday tasks.

If you choose HubSpot’s CRM, consulting an accredited partner agency like Fuelius for your onboarding means you’ll have the tools and knowledge to hit the ground running. Not to mention, HubSpot’s on-demand video tutorials and how-to guides, catering to different learning styles and empowering users to upskill and get the most out of the platform. 

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