For the past two years, manufacturers have focused on mobilising, stabilising, and adapting to the COVID-19 crisis and its related supply chain disruption. Now, with vaccines controlling the spread of the pandemic, it’s time to move forward and focus on growth.
A lot has changed in two years. Industry trends are driving manufacturing companies to become more digital and data-driven. Almost 50% or more of manufacturers surveyed by Salesforce say that the aftermath of COVID-19 has permanently altered just about every aspect of their business – from sales capabilities and customer service, to production and supplier capacity. The majority of salespeople have had to adapt to brand-new ways of selling — with new responsibilities and metrics for success.
Customer expectations have also changed: customers today look for not just a great product, but also personalised service, mass-customisation, and digital-first interactions. All this necessitates a design-driven approach to manufacturing, which starts with sales teams understanding customers better – not just what customers want, but why they want it. Knowing their challenges, in depth, is key to surfacing and satisfying unmet needs.
Even as manufacturers meet these changing expectations, they must compete with new entrants that are unencumbered with legacy systems. This requires manufacturers to be nimbler in how they sell and adapt to customer demands. Yesterday’s playbook with its overly manual approach to selling will no longer suffice. Instead, innovative new approaches and tools will be necessary to achieve sales success in the current landscape.
It’s clear from our conversations with manufacturers that digital is the way forward for sales. Digitising sales and operations planning (S&OP),will help manufacturers boost efficiency, reduce time-to-revenue, and lower costs. In fact, future-ready manufacturers – i.e., those who feel very prepared for the next decade – are 3.5 times more likely to have completely moved their S&OP to the cloud. And 77% of those in the cloud have mostly or entirely automated sales forecasting processes, enabling them to adapt quicker to market changes.
The digital imperative will only grow stronger, opening up new opportunities for manufacturers to power sales growth, and rise above the competition.
Customers today are looking for a connected experience from a brand that can understand their needs, personalise their experience, and deliver with transparency.
Manufacturing CRM solutions from Salesforce can help you become a sales-winning machine with higher quality leads, better collaboration among teams, and improved sales productivity.
A 360-degree customer view can help you connect with customers in a whole new way, while also cross-selling and upselling with ease. Your sales, production, and planning can all be connected on one platform to keep your business on track. And an intuitive configure-price-quote (CPQ) functionality makes it simple to determine the right solution for customers.
Streamline your entire customer lifecycle with Salesforce:
When our customer 360 approach and manufacturing solutions come together, customers benefit at multiple levels: