Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What if... your salesreps had a proper mobile app?

Over the past decades, the way we consume information and utilise systems has changed.
Not only has the amount of available information increased to a level where we struggle to get it all interpreted properly, it is very likely to be constantly at your fingertips.
These days, we carry our limitless encyclopedia in our pocket, and we have embedded this in our life.
Let's take a closer look at this limitless encyclopedia.

Use of the smartphone

I will use myself as an objective example. I use my smartphone for various functions.
1. Messaging & Collaboration. I send short messages to friends and colleagues.
2. Agenda. I manage my time and appointments. I get reminders
3. News. I read news, I check the weather forecast, I check traffic.
4. Facebook. I post and peek.
5. Games. I relax.

Use of the smartphone in business

So, looking at my normal behaviour, how would this fit in in a business environment where I am for instance a salesrep. What could my smartphone add for me?
First of all, we would need to acknowledge that in the business environment, my span of contacts and my filters for information are not always clear. I should be able to rely on my CRM system to present me the correct contact information for instance, but also the correct customer overview.
So let's map that to functionalities you would expect based on my 'normal' behaviour.

1. Messaging & Collaboration: Communicating with customers and colleagues
2. Agenda: Planning appointments with customers and colleagues
3. News: Checking a customer overview, but also an information stream on my customers
4. Facebook: Posting my activities and peeking at others.
5. Games: Could business be fun?

Customer centric

So let's make this a real CRM conversation, and throw some 'customer centric' ingredients into this recipe.
Let's assume that all things we do, concerns a customer, a contract, an opportunity or a salesorder. Wouldn't it be perfect if all conversations that we have in our app are related to at least one of these?
Wouldn't it be great if my news and 'facebook' stream would allow me to filter on relevant information based on my customer portfolio or my predefined interests?
Wouldn't it be perfect if it would look a little like something we currently use?

So... What would the 'perfect' app look like?

The picture is getting clearer.
I would want an app that allows me to:
  • 'chat' with my colleagues about opportunities, leads etc.
  • Get in touch with my customers.
  • Plan and execute my agenda.
  • Keep me up to date on what's going on in my customer and product portfolio.
  • 'Check in' at customers to post about my appointments and phonecalls.
  • View my customer's 'timeline' and 'profile'.
  • Allow me to 'subscribe' to certain topics or customers to stay up to date.
Of course, I would also like to be able to actually sell something using the app.

Why should we?

An easy to use mobile application will allow your salesreps to stay up to date, work efficiently and collaborate more. It will allow your CRM system to stay and keep everyone up to date.
It will allow you to push relevant updates to your salesreps, either from within the CRM system or from external resources (linkedin, twitter, news sites etc).
Handing a source of useful information to your salesreps will motivate them to consume and add relevant information, eventually getting your CRM system to do what it was intended for.

Where to buy?

When you want an app for your salesreps, Acorel offers a wide variety of standard and custom solutions. Acorel can help you with the SAP Fiori suite, SAP Cloud for Customer, or even a custom top-of-the-range app.