6 Common Problems with Stakeholder Relationship Management Software

Posted by Britney Blomquist on October 29, 2020

Common Reasons SRM Implementations Fail and How to Avoid Them

While Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM) software aims to make stakeholder management easier and more efficient, not all SRM software is created the same, and some platforms can have their fair share of problems.

For this blog, we’ve identified 6 common problems with Stakeholder Relationship Management software and the main reasons implementations fail. We have also provided solutions to avoid these problems and ensure you choose the best SRM software for your organization.

We’ll cover:

6 Common SRM Problems                  

Problem 1: Implementation and Data Migration

when implementing stakeholder relationship management software, implementation and data migration are important parts to the success of your business

Software implementation is the process of deploying the new software in an effective way to meet the organization’s needs (this includes setup, workflows, training, etc.). Additionally, with SRM software, there’s often a data migration process where an organization may need to import their existing data into the system. 

The problem is that implementation and data migration aren’t always straightforward, easy or successful. If these processes are done poorly, it can affect the organization’s operating times, adoption rates and overall efficiency. 

Solution:

Do your research! Choose a software vendor with a clear and well-thought-out implementation plan.

To evaluate their implementation process, consider asking questions around:

  • Implementation timelines
  • Data import (i.e. importing contacts or communication records)
  • Legacy system data migration (i.e. from other systems)
  • Training and support options

Choose an SRM vendor who can clearly answer these questions and in a way that best meets your organization’s needs.

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Problem 2: Low Adoption Rates

when stakeholder relationship management software is too confusing, time consuming or difficult to use, people will avoid using it and you'll see low user rates

We all know the saying, “old habits die hard.” 

When you’re asking your team to use new software, this transition can be challenging either because your team was used to the old process, they find the new tool overwhelming or confusing, or they haven’t been taught how to use the new tool properly. 

When a stakeholder relationship management software is too confusing or time-consuming to use, teams will avoid using it altogether, and you’ll find your organization’s stakeholder data saved everywhere but in the software (like laptops, external hard drives, USBs or in notepads).

Having your stakeholder data in different areas puts your organization at risk as it can leave potentially sensitive data out in the open. It’s also dangerous for your project as gaps in data can have legal consequences if you’re asked to run a report on all your data, and you can’t because you don’t know where it is.

Solution:

So, how do you get your team to actually use new software?

Look for an SRM that’s easy to use and understand so that your team will enjoy using it. To see if the software is a good fit for your team, book a team demo to evaluate the software’s design and ease of use.

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Problem 3: Not User-Friendly

stakeholder relationship management software must be user friendly and well designed

As mentioned with adoption rates, user-friendly software is much more likely to be used quickly and effectively; however, it’s one thing to make software that works, and it’s another thing to create software that people enjoy using.

User-friendly SRM requires a development team that understands coding, design and how people will interact with information within the system.

Consider the following elements that can help make an SRM user-friendly:

  • Has stakeholder-focused workflows
  • Designed with the user experience in mind (i.e. the way you do your job)
  • Designed with industry input to answer your questions
  • Easy to troubleshoot any issues or bugs
  • Designed to be scalable, to meet your organization’s growing needs
  • Easy to navigate and learn
  • Cloud-based accessibility
  • Auto-updated without any work required on your end

Solution:

Look for an SRM that looks good and is well designed.

An SRM is intended to keep your team organized, informed, and ready to manage engagement and consultation activities, so it isn't worth the investment if it can’t do this. To qualify how user-friendly the software is, book a team demo to see how easy the software is to navigate and evaluate the design with the checklist above, or download our comprehensive, free SRM buyer’s checklist below!

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Problem 4: Limited Customer Support

stakeholder relationship management software must be user friendly and well designed

This ties into what we’ve been discussing above, but it’s important to highlight on its own: software that doesn’t have a support team dedicated to your success is a huge roadblock for your team and your stakeholder engagement plans. 

By using an SRM, you’re hoping to mitigate many challenges associated with stakeholder management, but if you can’t understand how the software works or where to find the information you need, you’re not getting full value out of the software. 

Solution:

As mentioned above, sign up for a demo and evaluate the SRM software in action. Ask questions about the level of support provided and the training opportunities offered.

Consider:

  • How long does it take to be fully trained on the software?
  • What if you have a question? How do you contact the support team? (is there a support ticket service, how quickly can you expect a response, etc.)?
  • Are there future-focused training opportunities?
  • Will the customer support team check in on you and your team periodically?

Remember, SRM support and training are just as crucial as SRM design.

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Problem 5: No Future-Focused Maintenance 

With “set it and forget it” stakeholder relationship management software, there’s no real emphasis on product and feature updates or future maintenance, so this type of software won’t be improved or advanced to meet your future needs.

While software is often exciting when we first purchase it, what happens as our industries change and as technology advances?

With “set it and forget it” software, there’s no real emphasis on product and feature updates or future maintenance, so this type of software won’t be improved or advanced to meet your future needs. This is common with CRM software that users try to customize to work as an SRM. This is problematic as these CRM customizations are often very costly and there’s no future stakeholder engagement support or maintenance with these types of systems (not to mention the fact that CRMs are built to manage customers and sales, not stakeholders and your relationships with your stakeholders).

Without updates, new and better SRM tools will sweep the market, making you wish you had opted for a software vendor interested in keeping up to date with industry changes.

Solution:

Choose an SRM provider that’s committed to:

  • Feature updates
  • Continual bug fixes (with an option to report bugs)
  • Software upgrades
  • Continually learning about stakeholder engagement advancements and expectations
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Problem 6: The SRM Doesn’t Tell the Full Story

Many stakeholder relationship management software options on the market today have comparable features (i.e. issues and commitments management, contact profiles, communication tracking, tasks, etc.), but few options on the market have critical elements like traceability.

An SRM is a centralized place to store all your stakeholder information, but having a space to store all your data is only half the story; how you use that information is equally important.

Many options on the market today have comparable features (i.e. issues and commitments management, contact profiles, communication tracking, tasks, etc.), but few options on the market have critical elements like traceability.

What is traceability?

Traceability is the ability for all your stakeholder information to link together to help you build a full understanding of your stakeholders and your engagement projects quickly.

For example, with some SRMs that have traceability, you can click on a stakeholder profile to access all previous engagement information, such as communications you’ve had with them, details of issues they were involved in, commitments you made to them or team tasks associated with them. Or if you find a commitment or a task, you can easily see the original communication where it was first created, or what the associated issues were from that engagement, etc.

This ability for all your information to connect and tell a story is vital in stakeholder engagement as you need this information when running reports or when keeping your team informed. This information also helps you decide what to do next in your stakeholder engagement plan and where to invest vital resources.

Your SRM should be able to tell you exactly what you need to know when you need to know it, without having to dig.

Solution:

Look for a stakeholder relationship management software that has traceability. This is something that will be mentioned on their website, but you can also reach out and ask vendors directly.

Next Steps

Some inevitable challenges and difficulties arise when we change an old habit and adopt new tools; however, you can minimize these stakeholder management challenges by choosing an SRM that’s well-designed with a support team dedicated to your organization’s success.

To help you understand what kinds of questions you should consider when choosing an SRM, check out our free downloadable checklist for SRM software buyers.

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The Fastest and Easiest Stakeholder Relationship Management Software

Jambo is the fastest and easiest Stakeholder Relationship Management software on the market today. Created with input from private companies, governments, NGOs and engagement consultants, Jambo is a solution-focused software designed to meet your stakeholder engagement needs.

To see how Jambo can help your organization streamline and simplify your stakeholder engagement efforts, sign up for a free live-web demo in a no-pressure environment.

Book a Team Demo

Talk to you soon!

Topics: Stakeholder Engagement Plan, srm software, How to choose stakeholder engagement software, stakeholder relationship management, Stakeholder management challenges, choosing stakeholder relationship management, problems with stakeholder management software