As a company that lets you start your coffee maker from your cell phone, Belkin has high expectations for keeping its own employees connected. The company has experienced nearly 25 consecutive years of double-digit growth, and such rapid expansion can make it challenging to keep everyone aligned. For Belkin—a leading manufacturer of easy-to-use home and business networking solutions — the answer is going social. With help from Salesforce, Belkin brings global employees together — faster than it takes to brew a cup of joe.
“We needed a communication tool to streamline communications and improve visibility to key events,” explains Deanna Johnston, CIO. “Chatter eliminated email traffic and noise. Employees were excited that you only have to post a file once to get it to everyone who needs to see it.”
By shortening the time to complete key processes including special orders, Belkin has improved its bottom line. Custom cabling is highly competitive, and the company needs to quickly turn around quotes that require approvals from disparate groups around the company. “Previously, we would send emails back and forth between departments. The entire process took anywhere from 48 to 72 hours and hampered our ability to compete,” says Heather Peterson, Senior Business Systems Analyst. “Once we applied Chatter to the process, we could send a quote to the customer within 24 hours.”
A custom app for managing special pricing drives approvals — which were previously tracked in email, Excel, and Word — through Chatter, reducing the time to completion to just 4 hours. “Keeping everything in Chatter gives us one version of the truth,” Johnston adds.
In addition to connecting its employees, Belkin is using social tools to build closer connections with its retail customers and end users. The service team is beginning to use Facebook and Twitter as a support channel. And, using Salesforce, the company maintains social profiles to keep a record of customer orders, issues, and communications. Belkin pulls in information from LinkedIn so reps can know their contacts better and engage with them on a more personal level. Johnston explains, “Being social helps us have tighter connections with customers.”