This paper aims to figure out the potential impact of Big Data (BD) on Critical Success Factors (CSFs) of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). In fact, while some authors have posited a relationship between BD and CRM, literature lacks works that go into the heart of the matter.
Through an extensive up-to-date in-depth literature review about CRM, twenty (20) CSFs were singled out from 104 selected papers, and organized within an ad-hoc classification framework. The consistency of the classification was checked by means of a content analysis. Evidences were discussed and linked to the BD literature, and five propositions about how BD could affect CRM CSFs were formalized.
Our results suggest that BD-enabled CRM initiatives could require several changes in the pertinent CSFs. In order to get rid of the hype effect surrounding BD, we suggest to adopt an explorative approach towards them by defining a mandatory business direction through sound business cases and pilot tests. From a general standpoint, BD could be framed as an enabling factor of well-known projects, like CRM initiatives, in order to reap the benefits from the new technologies by addressing the efforts through already acknowledged management paths.
Big Data (BD) is considered as a potential enabling factor of business process innovation (Fosso Wamba, Akter, Edwards, Chopin, & Gnanzou, 2015; Loebbecke & Picot, 2015) and as a possible new form of value creation, although the mechanisms of such creation are still unclear (George, Haas, & Pentland, 2014). In fact, these innovations are potentially triggered by the current increased data availability in terms of volumes, variety, and velocity, which are data characteristics typically associated with the concept of BD. BD and BD analytics are transforming customer-facing industries (Fosso Wamba, Akter, & Bonicoli, 2013), which are increasingly collecting large amounts of customer data, like customers' shopping behaviour, for enabling a real-time decision making (Barton & Court, 2012; Bean & Kiron, 2013; Davenport, Barth, & Bean, 2012).