The field of sales has traditionally involved a lot of personal communication and relationship building, but the advent of working from home has changed the way a typical sales person operates. However, this setback has forced organizations to take a new look at the problem, using technology to make sales.
Panasonic is one of those companies that over the past 18 months has used CRM software, in partnership with Salesforce, to stay in touch with their customers.
“When it comes to sales in particular, it is very important that you stay physically connected with the customer because there is a lot of discussion if you have a product if you have a technology it becomes really difficult for any organization, individual or company. salesperson to convince the customer, it’s been like that for so many years, but with this pandemic everything came to a screeching halt, we were also totally disturbed at the beginning ”, said Ajay Saraf, senior vice president and head of project activities at Panasonic Life Solutions.
Through lots of internal discussions and the use of already existing software such as Zoom and MS Team, Panasonic persisted and was able to decipher accounts that it was not able to do before, he said. .
“With this pandemic, it created a lot of opportunities for us, in terms of contacting customers, customers were also relatively free, so we could engage with those customers through webinars, MS Teams, and also, we had one. institutionalized CRM system, which was there before with us, but the system was not behaving the way we wanted, so we went in and had discussions with SFDC, where we could institutionalize this CRM platform and that too, we got helped a lot, ”Saraf explained their trip.
The company was able to take full advantage of this system to engage with customers and bridge the gap between internal and external customers. The firm focused on the internalization and construction of this CRM platform, in order to make it more robust.
Speaking about the major impact of the deployment on the organization, he said: “We could see that everyone speaks the same language, everyone is on the same platform, even the customer is very keen on s ‘associate with us through this platform, we used to have demos, commercial activity, it all happened through these platforms that we created and we mainly focused on that, in fact, the whole team was aligned and we also supported the customer, in terms of what media to use, how do you make a virtual connection because they were also stuck one way because they also had to engage with their vendors or customers . “
Saraf stressed the importance of proper implementation of these technologies, as their access is so easy for large organizations. In the first few months, when things were still a bit dormant, Panasonic managed to integrate CRM solutions into their system.
“It took us 3-4 months to institutionalize, which in itself is a record, that’s what I hear from the SFDC team, and it was very, very transparent and in 3 months we were able to using it, internally as well as externally, whether it’s in terms of leads, or how do you prioritize your discussions, how do you plan which customer should be prioritized. I think prioritization has also helped through this platform, ”Saraf said of how the institutionalization of the platform has helped the business.
“Transactions started to be done through this platform, we weren’t used to it, at first, and when we started taking orders and discussing negotiations with the customer, it was something that was very good for us. We could close some orders, and with this ERP in place, it could automatically capture and consolidate data for us, as I mentioned, in terms of orders, invoicing, shipping, ”a added Saraf.
He further explained that the platform allows the organization to provide the customer with demos and presentations and, more importantly, helps them secure orders.
“I would say that for any organization a robust CRM platform is something very important, so there are a lot of other technological innovations as well, incorporations that we have made but if we are talking about the last 8-10 months, this implementation was something that was a runaway success for us and it was kind of a transformational project for us and we are reaping the harvest now, ”Saraf concluded.