USAID is a globally-dispersed agency, with a presence in nearly 100 countries around the world, as well as dozens of operating units headquartered in Washington D.C. Across the enterprise, there are dozens – perhaps hundreds – of individuals regularly liaising/collaborating with the private sector, but no shared system or unified set of processes that allows for consistent, effective management of these relationships. Rather, many USAID operating units have either collected and stored private sector relationship data through ad hoc tools and processes, like basic, stagnant spreadsheets, email folders, or simply through handwritten notes or institutional memory.
The lack of a formalized relationship management system or set of processes has often resulted in inconsistent management of relationships and partnerships with the private sector, as well as a collective inability to see a real-time composite of the Agency’s outreach with the private sector. It has also resulted in poor “customer” service with individual private sector entities, who often find they do not know how to collaborate with USAID or move a potential engagement forward.
- Comprehensive User Base Profile Report: Upon completion of all key informant interviews, focus group sessions, survey review and analysis, and technical/systems review, PSE Support developed a comprehensive User Base Profile Report. This report provided a detailed analysis of all findings from the team’s research and stakeholder engagement, outlining the prevailing CRM needs and challenges in the USAID organizational context.
- Enterprise-Wide CRM: The User Base Profile Report provided key data points about the current relationship management issues and gaps at USAID and made recommendations about how an enterprise-wide CRM system could be designed to address specific challenges and enhance the overall effectiveness of staff engagement of the private sector. This included detailing how a new system can improve the following needs: staff collaboration; easy access to information; process improvement; and relationship tracking & data collection/reporting.
- Overarching Enterprise Recommendations: The CRM User Base Profile Report ultimately informed a larger Enterprise Recommendation on a prospective relationship management solution, which was developed jointly by the PSE Hub and the Office of the CIO. This recommendation included a proposed platform solution, cost estimate over 5 years, and how the CRM would be incorporated alongside existing USAID IT infrastructure. This recommendation was reviewed by relevant USAID offices (e.g., public/legislative affairs; General Counsel; acquisition & assistance) before being cleared and formally submitted the Office of the USAID Administrator for final approval.