With a complex product sold through salespeople, Hako Machines sought to tackle the technology supporting its salespeople
Hako Machines (Hako), a subsidiary of Hako GMBH in Germany, is a specialist manufacturer of a wide range of cleaning machines. With a team of more than 70 people in the UK, Hako serves customers large and small, providing machine sales, hire, service and repair. The sales team is spread across the UK, and its ability to efficiently and effectively produce professional quotes is paramount to showcasing the brand to customers.
Quotes were taking too long to produce
At Hako, the role of the salesperson is to go out and meet customers, undertake site surveys, determine their needs, and to formulate quotes.
To support sales activities, Hako had Workbooks CRM in place, alongside an archaic sales quoting system. However, this dual-system environment was creating a number of issues, including a complicated process to produce a customer quote.
One major issue was the ability to create pipeline information to allow analysis of forecasting data. This is necessary to reliably predict stock replenishment.
Additionally, in response to technology advancement and customer needs, the specification of machines frequently changes. This meant support fees were being incurred each time an update to the quoting system was required.
And finally, there were connectors in place between the two systems which were slow performing and would occasionally fail. When they failed, time consuming support calls had to be logged, and a labour-intensive manual reference process was necessary to correct the data.
Utilising technology to Improve the efficiency of salespeople and reduce business risk
Hako knew a better solution was required. Specifically, the business was seeking:
- A single system to support the sales lifecycle, from quotation through to delivery.
- A system that could dynamically handle updates.
- To free salespeople from admin and enable them to spend more time with prospects and clients.
- To utilise technology to advance the business.
- To engage a support partner that listened, was proactive, and actively sought innovation.
- To ideally reduce the number of systems.
Hako engaged CRM Insights due to its in-depth expertise with the Workbooks CRM product, along with strong appreciation of manufacturers that sell complex, configurable products through an in-field sales team.
Benefits achieved all-round
One of the first things to be achieved was to move the sales quoting system from SQL into Workbooks CRM. This immediately removed a suite of issues for the IT function, including: the problem of connectors failing; ending the use of out-of-support software; and remedying frustrations with growing system support costs.
The day-to-day job of the salesperson was also substantially improved. No longer did they have to deal with multiple systems. And with everything being in one system - Workbooks CRM - the admin burden on salespeople reduced significantly. This means more time can be spent with customers, whether on the phone or in-person.
In addition, using a single system enables the specification of machines within an order to be easily changed. Combined with spending more time with customers, this ensures they’re able to take advantage of new capabilities as soon as they become available.
Utilising Workbooks CRM effectively, Hako now has a streamlined reporting process and accurate pipeline reports.
“This project was about simplifying systems and improving the efficiency of the salesperson. Both of these we have achieved.”
Not simply a support provider but a business partner
With accurate data, Hako can now easily pull off reports from the system to support superior business decision-making. But this is only the beginning. The intention is to work with CRM Insights to further explore the opportunities.
“The whole CRM Insights team are simply nice to deal with. They’re on the same wavelength. They know where we’re headed as a business, and they’re proactive in helping us get there.”
Mark Parton, IT Manager, Hako
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Many businesses have complex products that necessitate a salesperson, and supporting process, to formulate quotes and make sales. Too many salespeople in such organisations are overburdened by admin tasks because the systems they have in place simply don't function as effective tools.
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