Relations with Stakeholders

Stakeholder Engagement is still niche in the software industry, a trade where CRM offers a variety of solutions. Companies sometimes mix both systems when it is time to build relationships with stakeholders. With an IT perspective, peoples and organisations can be seen as contacts, but Stakeholder Engagement and CRM do not lie in the same place within an organisation, do not cover the same business processes, and target opposite goals.

Philosophical Distinction

The philosophical distinction is the essence of the gap between each system: CRM’s goal is to sell products and services to peoples and organisations, while Stakeholder Engagement’s aim is to engage these peoples and organisations in your projects. As the process evolves, you lose participants in your CRM timeline by eliminating prospects, while you register more participants in the Stakeholder Management by engaging communities. Engaging people is simply not a selling process; you don’t close the deal at the end, and you continue to live with the people and deal with a changing situation before, during and after the project. Your success is based on your actions, not on your marketing.

Stakeholder Engagement

CRM drives the sales; it is the source feeding the supply chain. CRM software provide tools to build, measure and run marketing campaigns and sales activities. Stakeholder Engagement software is used by community teams, land management teams, field teams, corporate affairs and communications departments, and more. Stakeholder Management software have a different landscape and integrate processes such as Grievance Management, Land Access, Social Investment, Local Employment, and more.

Stakeholders are not customers; confusing the two represents a risk to the realisation of your project.

(Stakeholder Management, Stakeholder Relationship Management, SRM and Stakeholders Software are terms also used to describe Stakeholder Engagement)

About François Robichaud
François counts 10 years’ experience implementing complex social and environmental solutions on large international infrastructure projects. He joined Boréalis in 2009, where he’s successfully contributed to projects around the world. François has extensive experience in stakeholder engagement, social investment, grievance management, resettlement and livelihood restoration, surveying and biodiversity. Outside his work, François is passionate about volcanoes, seismology and you might even catch him bungee jumping on some weekends.