With Salesforce, we can learn faster and act faster. It helps to sky rocket customer satisfaction and competitive advantage.”

Sander Boom, COO, Newtec
 
 

Transatlantic flights. Renewable energy sites. Community schools. Humanitarian projects. Satellite communications help to make the world safer and better informed by providing reliable and rapid connectivity when and where it’s needed most.

Newtec has been blazing a trail in satellite communications for more than 30 years. The company designs, develops, and manufactures equipment and technology for satellite communications – and does it exceptionally well. Its commitment to innovation and excellence has resulted in numerous industry awards and prompted a 26% growth surge in 2016.

“We are shaping the future of satellite communications,” said Newtec COO Sander Boom. “By enabling our customers to transmit information more easily and reliably, we enhance the quality of life for billions of people around the world.” 

From collaboration communities and smart cold component storage to production line apps and visual workflows, Newtec is also shaping the industry’s adoption of digitalisation and customer-centric services. “With Salesforce, we can bring the right products, processes, and people together to deliver greater customer value and achieve greater growth,” said Boom. “Our goal is to connect everything and everyone.”

And Boom really does mean everything. To safeguard the quality of its circuit boards, the company uses Salesforce IoT to monitor the temperature of its cold component storage units at its manufacturing facilities. “We now know when a storage unit is opened and for how long,“ explained Boom. “This means we can keep our solder paste in optimum conditions, which prevents potential problems with electrical connections on the circuit boards.”

The quality and reliability of Newtec’s products, which include hubs, switches, converters, and modems, is paramount: its technology enables three billion people to watch television every day and underpins 80% of cellular trunking in Africa.

To seize the growth opportunity in its core markets, which include broadcast, defence, and transportation, Newtec needed to ramp agility and innovation up a gear. “The satellite communications sector is moving and growing fast,” explained Erik Dierinck, Newtec’s IT Director. “We needed a service-orientated platform to support our customer-centric vision and enable continuous improvement of our operations.”

As part of its move to this new approach, Newtec also wanted to reduce administration, eliminate hidden costs, and prevent system sprawl.

In 2017, Salesforce became Newtec’s service-orientated platform connecting sales, marketing, supply chain, customer service, finance, and production teams and processes. “With Salesforce, we have a 360-degree view of the customer before they even place their first order,” said Boom. “Every customer interaction has become a unique and unified experience.”

The ability to use a single platform across multiple business functions was a key driver for Newtec. “We have to be able to respond quickly to customer requests and that means understanding their history,” said Boom. “People used to have to make multiple calls to source this information from their colleagues. We wanted to stop departmental ping-pong and empower people to collaborate more effectively.”

By using Salesforce across its entire value chain, Newtec can track everything from assets and interactions to contracts and service levels. As well as providing greater visibility, the platform boosts agility and efficiency. “There is minimal code with Salesforce, which makes it quicker and easier for us to adapt and innovate,” explained Dierinck.

With Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Community Cloud, and various apps all on the implementation wish-list, Newtec decided to trade its traditional waterfall methodology for a more agile approach. Working with Salesforce consulting partner, Jeewi-Scalefactory, the company started with the processes closest to its customers: service. “We wanted to be able to deliver immediate benefit to our customers,” said Dierinck.

And that’s exactly what Newtec has achieved. With Service Cloud, the company has taken its excellent service record to even greater heights. As Boom explained: “By empowering our field engineers and service agents with more information, we can provide a more consistent and predictable service.

Capturing more service information also means that Newtec can prevent and predict problems rather than just respond to them. “There’s a difference between resolving and solving a problem,” said Boom. “With Service Cloud, we’ve gone from reactive to proactive, which leads to an upward spiral of quality.”

Critical cases can be handed between its customer service teams to provide ‘follow the sun’ support. “The Service Cloud dashboards provide real-time status updates, which makes it easier to track cases and potential SLA breaches,” said José Lafitte, Director for Customer Support at Newtec. Reporting on these SLAs and other customer support metrics is now a lot easier: for example, the time taken to generate a service report has reduced by two-thirds.

As part of its customer-centric mission, Newtec has created a dedicated community to provide self-service features, such as raising support tickets, lodging complaints, and accessing product information. “We work with lots of different people at each customer organisation,” added Dierinck. “With Community Cloud, we can build stronger connections and simplify collaboration with an expanding customer base.”

Built on Community Cloud, Newtec wants to extend usage to include downloading firmware and scheduling maintenance in the future. It has also launched a community to collaborate with its 100-plus certified partners around the world, who form part of an increasingly complex value chain.

Collaboration is also important for Newtec’s different sales teams. With Sales Cloud and Chatter, pre-sales specialists, bid teams, and account managers can work together on opportunities more effectively, helping to push them through the pipeline faster and reducing internal calls by around 60%.

Newtec has integrated Sales Cloud with third party marketing and quoting tools to create a seamless sales cycle from lead generation to order fulfilment. “Sales Cloud acts as a central point for all customer orders. We’ve created orchestrated processes and automated triggers that link back to every opportunity, which helps to improve sales productivity and performance,” explained Dierinck.

Visibility of the sales pipeline is essential for optimising Newtec’s supply chain – every product it ships needs to be configured to match customers’ individual needs.

With Salesforce, the production team can view upcoming orders and create more accurate fulfilment forecasts, while account managers can check the status of specific orders. To make things even more efficient, Newtec has created a visual flow of the entire fulfilment process in Salesforce, which helps pinpoint opportunities for process improvements.

Developing visual flows is just the tip of the innovation iceberg at Newtec. As part of its digitalisation roadmap, the company is using the Salesforce Platform to develop apps that will further optimise customer support and manufacturing. “By embracing apps and AI, we will be able to create continuous feedback loops that enhance decision-making, quality, and efficiency,” said Boom.

Newtec is already achieving more with the same resources. “Our business is growing by around 15% a year but our headcount isn’t,” said Dierinck. “With Salesforce we can do more, do it better, and do it quicker.”

As result, it’s not just Newtec’s products that shine, but also its people. “Our customers now get to benefit from joint heroism instead of working with individual heroes in individual departments,” said Boom. “With Salesforce, we can learn faster and act faster. It helps to sky rocket customer satisfaction and competitive advantage.”

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