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Ubiquitous organization: organizational design for e-CRM

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In 1998 J.P. Morgan's analysts forecast that the market for e-CRM (customer relationship management) solutions would grow rapidly. Since then more than 700 e-CRM firms have emerged. The convergence of information technologies caused enterprise information systems providers to add e-CRM functionality to their systems, thus further increasing the number of e-CRM suppliers. The proliferation of e-CRM concepts, models and technologies causes significant confusion and uncertainty. Corporate executives question the economic benefits of investing in multimillion dollar e-CRM projects, ponder about the right business and organizational models for e-CRM, and are uncertain which e-CRM models and technologies will prove both profitable and sustainable over time. With so many failed e-CRM initiatives some executives wonder whether e-CRM is not simply a hype. In the present paper what e-CRM is, from where the economic benefits from investing in e-CRM derive, and the evolution of alternative e-CRM models are elaborated. It is also argued that successful e-CRM projects are not narrowly departmental, but instead organization-wide initiatives. The paper presents a conceptual framework for e-CRM organizational architecture. The findings in the paper are based on e-CRM industry analysis, evaluation and work experience with over 50 e-CRM vendors, and on consulting experience with numerous corporations.
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Keywords: E-Commerce; Information Systems; Organizational Design; Teams; Transaction Costs

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-06-24

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