Collaborative robotics; Internet of Things; Industry 4.0: manufacturing is an exciting and fast-paced place to be right now. And Steelworks Design is embracing these changes to blaze a trail in the industry. “When people think of manufacturing, they think of old-fashioned, manual production lines, when actually it’s high tech and innovative,” said Katherine Duncan, Sales Administrator and Health and Safety Coordinator at Steelworks Design. “At Steelworks Design, we’re taking advantage of new technologies to help our customers with manufacturing solutions that help them create their products more efficiently.”
Steelworks Design was founded in 2002 by two partners who wanted to flex their innovation muscles to bring bespoke designs to their customers. With its roots in the automotive sector, the company now designs solutions across numerous industries, from food and pharmaceutical to and energy and utilities.
With diverse projects and a variety of customers, offering a consistent, friendly, and efficient customer experience could be a challenge: but not for this Trailblazing business. “Getting to know our customer properly is ingrained in our culture at Steelworks Design, which means we like to visit them in person,” said Duncan. “As we expand across Canada and into the US and Mexico, it’s important to us that our customers get the same warm welcome. We don’t want to change how we interact with our customers, but we did want to make the process more efficient behind the scenes.”
Commissioning bespoke machinery is a big commitment, so building trust and demonstrating professionalism is a vital factor in winning new business. “From providing quotes and proposing designs through to delivery and maintenance services, we want to deliver a seamless customer experience,” adds Duncan.
“As well as making sure we’re getting back to customers quickly, Salesforce helps us to be more predictive too,”
The company’s manual quoting and reporting processes resulted in a lack of consistency that was impacting efficiency, as well as the customer experience. “Some weeks, we were creating back-to-back quotes. Once we’d created the customer document, we’d have to enter them into our ERP system manually, and then export the data into Excel for reporting,” explained Duncan. “KPIs have always been really important to us, but they took a lot of time to produce, so we started to look at how we could do it digitally.”
After several weeks of research, presentations, and talking to other users, Duncan and her colleagues decided to roll out Salesforce. “With Salesforce, we saw the opportunity to replace hours of manual effort with just a few clicks,” said Duncan.
Within two months, Steelworks rolled out Sales Cloud to its sales, finance, and operations teams. Now, the company has full visibility of the sales pipeline across the company, helping sales reps prioritize their actions more effectively and providing a more accurate forecast of future sales. It can also track KPIs to keep on top of targets, measure sales in different regions, and share the win rate across the business.
Every customer interaction is logged in Sales Cloud, giving the company a comprehensive customer history and helping to drive a more joined-up experience across departments. “As well as making sure we’re getting back to customers quickly, Salesforce helps us to be more predictive too,” said Duncan. “For example, we can see which quotes turned into sales and prioritize quoting for jobs we’re more likely to win.”
The quoting process is one of the key areas that Duncan has streamlined with a digital process - once a minefield of manual spreadsheets, quotes can now be created and adapted from templates built into Salesforce. “We’re sending out twice as many quotes than this time last year, and customers are receiving more polished, professional-looking documents and faster,” confirmed Duncan.
With sales reps often on the road travelling to customer meetings, the Salesforce Mobile App helps the team to keep connected while on the move. “We’re all big fans of the mobile app,” said Duncan. “It’s not always possible to carry a computer, but the app means those hours spent travelling aren’t wasted. We can check customer details, capture meeting updates, and view KPIs via our dashboard.”
Communicating with customers, prospects, and company stakeholders is also easier with Salesforce. Steelworks Design is using a solution from the AppExchange to send out monthly eblasts. “Our email campaigns vary from very targeted communications to generic newsletters that go to all stakeholders, customers, and prospects. For example, we recently sent out information on our work with collaborative robotics to keep all of our contacts up-to-date on the latest trends,” Duncan added.
With such processes streamlined and automated, the team is free to be more creative, drive continuous improvement, and prepare for the future. Next, Duncan and her colleagues are planning to integrate Salesforce with their ERP system and investigate how Einstein can make sales more intelligent. “We may be an SME, but with Salesforce we can take an enterprise-standard approach that supports our growth ambitions without losing the spirit of Steelworks Design. We can stay efficient, scale quickly, and offer a seamless, consistent, and professional customer experience.”
“Salesforce helps us to be adaptable: when one of the team thinks we can be doing something better, I can change it instantly in Salesforce. If I’m browsing the community and come across a great idea, I can try it out without putting in months of work on development. This agility is crucial in today’s fast-paced world.”
Katherine Duncan, Sales Administrator and Health and Safety Coordinator, Steelworks Design