How Fike took its revolutionary sales and service digital.
When your business is largely dependent on travel and onsite visits, a global pandemic can completely derail your operations. But with a solid digital foundation and the right field technology, conducting business virtually is a cinch.
No one knows this better than Fike Corporation, a leading industrial safety manufacturer specializing in protection mechanisms and solutions. Yet, with 75 years under its belt and a rich family history, Fike had become accustomed to its legacy systems, resulting in expensive technician training, longer response times, and siloed data across the organization.
When COVID-19 hit, it served as a catalyst for ushering in a new digital age for Fike, resulting in faster, more efficient virtual processes and seamless data tracking across the business. With Chad Lowman, Director, Corp Business Systems at Fike, at the helm, the company was able to go remote in just two days and complete its digital transformation in 10 months.
Let’s take a look at how Chad and the Fike team use Salesforce Customer 360 and other technology to connect data, streamline the lead and quoting process, and provide impeccable customer service — even from afar.
1. Connect the front and back office.
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2. Shift to virtual field service.
Until recently, Fike has faced a complex, costly, and time-consuming process of flying its service technicians to onsite appointments when needed. But with remote work mandates and travel restrictions caused by the pandemic, Fike needed a way to service customer parts without risk.
Fike adopted a field service solution that could partner with its new virtual assistant provider, SightCall. Together, the solution allows Fike to remotely train technicians onsite and easily walk them through repair processes. Using their phones, employees can take augmented reality measurements and solve problems faster, resulting in a 90% reduction in travel costs and 70% decrease in customer response times.
3. Streamline lead management and quoting.
Digital transformation was also necessary in Fike’s sales department, where connecting leads to the right quote was previously a time-consuming process. By consolidating sales data into a single quote-to-cash platform, Fike automated its lead management and quoting process, while improving accuracy.
To test how easy it would be to customize workflows within the new platform and collaborate globally, Fike held a virtual CPQ hackathon to reimagine the company’s sales and business processes across its three product lines. The hackathon revealed a number of solutions, including the ability to:
- Quote by item name instead of parts numbers
- Develop workflows to reduce manufacturing overhead and increase margins
- Create more accurate bills of material to reduce selling incorrect parts
4. Collaborate across teams.
One of the reasons for the hackathon’s success was the ability for teams to quickly and easily collaborate virtually. With participants across the globe, Fike teams were able to collaborate over the same documents in real time, managing communications and executing as quickly as possible. Going forward, Fike sales, service, and engineering teams can quickly and easily collaborate in real time to stay informed and productive across customer accounts and new projects.
“The online method is working better than in real life because it’s helping keep people accountable with time management,” said Chad. “They’ve knocked out several great deliverables in a short amount of time.”
With a fully digitized solution for sales and service, Fike is discovering new ways of doing business efficiently, no matter where its technicians and employees work from. As more companies return to work, new and old processes may be at odds, but having a connected platform to launch from will allow for newfound agility and productivity.