Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Surveys with Product lists determined based on Target groups

Cloud for Customer is jam-packed with cool features to cover all kinds of business requirements.
In some cases these features are nicely described and explained in the help documentation, but in other cases you would be surprised what more the system has to offer that has not been extensively described. In this blog I want to share some information about how to set up product surveys with product determination based on product lists in combination with target groups. Yes I know, it is quite a mouthful but this functionality can be very useful if you want to limit the amount of data maintenance while still being able to automatically populate the relevant Products on Surveys.

This can be a lifesaver in retail execution scenarios, in which we conduct many store visits with product surveys. First of all you can already save tons of time by assigning product lists to surveys instead of individual products. Then on top of that you can achieve even more efficiency by assigning target groups to these product lists instead of individual customers. The stores that carry the same assortments can be grouped into the same target groups. So when visiting these stores the list of products automatically get populated on the survey. Let me continue to explain why this approach is way more maintenance-friendly.

This approach will especially become valuable when you have the total product assortment divided into many product lists that have been assigned to many customers at once. Instead of going into each individual product list to update the list of customers, we assign the target groups to the product lists one-time only. Whenever a new customer should be added or removed to multiple product lists at once we only update that single target group. This will directly affect the product list determination for this customer when for example conducting a survey with almost zero maintenance effort!

It is easy to set this up in a few simple steps, let me show you how.

Start with creating at least one target group. This is a collection of multiple members i.e. customers for which the product list is valid. Make sure to activate the target group.

The next step is to create one or more product lists containing the products that have been identified as relevant for the target group’s assortment. Assign the target group to this product list. Also mark the checkbox “Automatic Proposal” if you would like this list of products to be populated in Sales Documents for these customers including proposed order quantities. Then also assign a category to this product list. In our case this is category “Survey”. The system will determine product lists based on category and target groups. In an alternative scenario you could also opt to assign account hierarchies to the product list instead of target groups, in case this solution already cover your requirements. Now finally make sure to activate the product list.

Now you only have to create and design the survey. Mark the checkbox “Add Products from Product List”.

Now assign the same category to this survey as the one used in the product list.

Take notice we do not directly assign products or product lists, as we already know that determination is being done through the product list category and target group.

Now in the final step make sure to update your activity plan and routing rules to include the survey when creating visits for these customers. I assume it is commonly known how to do this, and how to set it up can also be found in the help section of the Cloud for Customer documentation; Search for “Configuring Visits”, there you can find topics “Create Activity plans” and “Assign surveys automatically”.

That’s it! Now whenever you create a visit for a customer that has been assigned to one or more target groups, the survey will be determined and the relevant products will be "dynamically" populated based on the target group(s). Works like a charm.

In order to speed up the data entry process it is possible to make use of migration templates that facilitate in the bulk creation of target groups and product lists as described in step 1 and 2. These can be found in the data migration tool at the "Integrate and Extend" section of the Activity List of your implementation project. We just love efficiency!

There you have it: A practical guide for setting up product surveys with product determination based on product lists in combination with target groups. Hopefully this week's blog has been helpful to you. Please leave your questions and comments below.