Reasons your sales team hates your CRM

Noticed that your sales team aren’t using their CRM effectively? Here are some common reasons why this might be happening- and how to fix them.

Picture of Alex Martin Alex Martin

Published: 25 Feb 2020

6 minutes read

Reasons your sales team hates your CRM | Axon Garside

A CRM is designed to help your sales team succeed - managing leads, using helpful reminders, and enabling them to pull up the data they need in seconds. However, many B2B companies are finding that their sales teams are reluctant to engage with a CRM, or  avoiding it altogether. It’s frustrating to see - often you have spent time, effort, and company resources to make sure that you have the correct tools for the job, and if they aren’t being used, then they’re being wasted. The issue is unlikely to be your team -  it’s much more likely that your CRM just isn’t a good fit. 

Here, we’ve outlined the common issues that we’ve noticed in the modern B2B workplace, surrounding CRM use. Do these sound familiar? If so, it might be time for a change.  

They’re scared of ‘Big Brother’ 

The whole point of having a CRM is so that the managers can spy on the sales team - right? 


The point of a CRM is to make selling a less complicated process, but this isn’t always the way the sales team sees it. With any sort of software that tracks emails, logs calls and requires you to enter information, there is a fear that ‘Big Brother’ is watching, and that sales managers are actually using the software to spy on the team. For this reason, there’s usually a slight reluctance from salespeople to use the system, particularly if they haven’t had to log contact with leads before. 

However, a CRM that logs emails, calls, and contact with leads functions as a great way to make sure that leads are being nurtured effectively, and that deals are being followed up. If you’re using a CRM in the correct way, then you never need to worry about two members of the sales team calling the same lead, or not having a reliable understanding of where your prospect is in their buying journey. A CRM is about so much more than checking up on your sales team - it’s about making sure that every team member is on the same page, and that every prospect is confident in the capability of your staff. 

They’re more comfortable working with spreadsheets

This is a complaint we’ve heard time and time again: “Spreadsheets are just easier! People are used to spreadsheets! Why fix something that isn’t broken?!” 

In a sales process, it’s tempting to stick to the way that things have always been done, particularly if your team has been working in the same way for a while. However, relying on spreadsheets and the occasional rogue post-it to hold on to important information about leads isn’t just a GDPR nightmare - it’s inefficient. 

Even though your CRM can hold the customer information that your team needs to keep track of, they still might be tempted to stick to the spreadsheets - they’re less complicated, easy to use, and there’s no learning curve involved. However, It’s your responsibility to make sure that each team member understands the benefits of working with a CRM in order to get them to ditch the spreadsheets, as this can lead to higher productivity and a more efficient sales process. 

They haven’t been trained on how to use it 

If you don’t know how to use something, then a great deal of the time you just won’t use it. This ties back to the previous point - it’s easier to work with the tools that you already have than commit time and effort to learning a new piece of tech. On top of this, many CRM systems offer complicated tools and add-ons to make life easier, which may have the opposite effect if they are not simple to access and use. 

To combat this, your best bet is to make sure that any new CRM you choose has UX as a priority. Too many systems appear overly complex and could be daunting to learn, but if you have software that uses simple design, clear signposting, and training assets, then this will make your team more likely to use it. 

It’s time consuming to enter the data 

Using a  CRM means painstakingly entering every bit of data you have about a lead, like what you’ve discussed with them, what time you spoke to them, what they had for lunch … right? 

Not even close.

Many CRMs get a bad rep in this way - and many sales teams think that in order to get the most from the system, you need to spend time on boring data entry. As CRMs have been getting more and more sophisticated, this is less often the case. It’s best to find a CRM that collects data automatically, and minimises the amount of time needed to manually enter any important information.  

If your sales team is currently avoiding your CRM, then it might be worth taking a look to see if the current system automates such simple tasks. There are hundreds of CRMs on the market, and not all of them have this basic feature. We personally rely on HubSpot, a system that not only automatically finds company name and details (based on just an email address!) but there are plenty of other options that offer features like this. 

For more insight into how the HubSpot software operates, request our free demo

It doesn’t integrate with other tools 

How many tools do you use on a daily basis? One? Two? Twenty? Many sales professionals work between different programmes, and have to switch and change as their day goes on. This is fine if there are only a couple of tools, but once you start using ten or more, life can quickly get complicated. If your team is using other tools heavily, but not taking advantage of the CRM, then it may be better to look at an option that has a wide range of integration options. If you can work with one tool, instead of ten, then you can save time and money, and help your sales team spend less time switching between tools, and more time actually selling. 

Thinking of a new CRM? If your sales team hates your current one, then they aren’t going to make the most of it, no matter how many fancy features it has. The key to finding a CRM that works flawlessly with your team is to make sure that you prioritise ease of use, automation, and integration, and there are plenty of CRMs that offer these benefits. As mentioned, we love HubSpot just for sheer simplicity, and the vast amount of training tools that it has to offer. The basic HubSpot CRM is also free, which is an added benefit when you’re looking to check out your options without making a huge commitment. 

Not quite sure yet? We’re offering a free demo of the software for a limited time - get in touch to find out what a CRM can really do. There’s no obligation, no charge, and your demo will be completely tailored to you. Plus, your sales team might be a little happier! 

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