With Salesforce, we can make the most of  every opportunity. We can understand our customers and the market, and  provide an end-to-end experience that differentiates us as a business.”

- John McCarthy, National After Sales & CRM Manager, Daikin Applied UK
 

Whether we’re out shopping, at work, or travelling, we’re usually blissfully unaware of the systems that are working away behind the scenes to keep us cool. But optimising air conditions is Daikin Applied UK’s area of expertise. “We’re aiming to become the undisputed number one applied air conditioning manufacturer in the UK,” said John McCarthy, National After Sales & CRM Manager. “Competitive pricing, a good product portfolio, and great people are only part of the puzzle. We need to understand where the market’s going, react quickly to changing needs, and offer a bespoke yet seamless experience to every customer.”

McCarthy is blazing a trail at Daikin Applied UK by putting customers in the spotlight. “We’re swapping online spreadsheets and manual quotes for Salesforce,” he explained. “With better sales information, faster quoting, and joined-up service, we’ll be able to take customer service to the next level.”

 

With Salesforce I've been able to lead not only a great implementation, but best practice and business cadence across our team, enabling a better, more effective approach to sales. It's been a great learning experience.”

-John McCarthy, National After Sales & CRM Manager

From commercial office buildings and data centers to retail outlets, hospitals, and manufacturing plants, Daikin Applied’s chillers and air handling units keep both people and critical equipment at just the right temperature.

 As the company manufactures highly customised, large-scale systems, Daikin Applied’s sales team handle deals worth up to £7 million, and sales cycles that can last up to three years. “Our deals can be extremely large and complex, with quotes that are constantly revised with changing project scope,” said McCarthy. “To keep on top of every sale, traceability and diligence are vital.”

When spreadsheets were no longer cutting it, McCarthy was tasked with transforming Daikin Applied’s approach to sales with Salesforce. Undaunted – although he’d never used Salesforce before – he set out a strategy outlining what he hoped to achieve. And 12 weeks later, he’d smashed his target of implementing Sales Cloud across the commercial team. 

“As with any change management project, the key to our success was winning hearts and minds,” explained McCarthy. “With a series of workshops at Salesforce Tower in London, I was able to show our sales people what Salesforce could do for them to secure their buy-in and drive enthusiasm.”

Some of the most powerful capabilities that McCarthy has realised for the Daikin Applied sales team with Sales Cloud include streamlined approvals, more accurate forecasting, and better customer data. “Using Salesforce shows everyone what’s going on in the business, drives the right behaviours, and helps us make good decisions,” said McCarthy. “By shining a light on the sales pipeline, we’ve been able to improve sales forecasting, which is really important to the company’s listing on the Japanese stock exchange.”

As well as improving visibility, McCarthy’s transformation has freed up sales teams to spend more time with customers and better understand their needs. “We’ve cut the time it takes to create a chiller quote in half with Salesforce CPQ, which is no mean feat given the complexity of our orders,” said McCarthy. “Responding quickly to a quote request can be the difference between winning a deal and losing out.”

The team is also using the Salesforce mobile app to view and update customer and meeting information on the road. “Most of the team have really taken to the Salesforce mobile app and just love it – making updates by talking to their phone instead of having to sit at their desk is far less of a chore.” said McCarthy.  

McCarthy expects these productivity improvements to be reflected in next year’s sales figures. 

As Daikin Applied increases adoption and the quality of its data, the information captured in Salesforce is starting to unveil a richer picture of how the sales team is performing, and which approaches are getting the best results. As well as tracking its successes, the team is also capturing losses to unlock important insights in market trends and demand. “We can now identify the products that customers are repeatedly requesting but are missing from our portfolio,” explained McCarthy. “We’ll have the hard figures to back up our gut feelings so we know where to invest and innovate.”

With industrial air conditioning, selling the product is only part of the journey. So McCarthy is about to extend his trailblazing transformation to the service team with Service Cloud and Field Service Lightning. 

With all customer information in the same place, Daikin Applied Service will be able to deliver intelligent sales and service – from phone to field. “By empowering engineers at the front line to offer customers digital services from their tablets, including signing job sheets and requesting new quotes, we’ll revolutionise the customer experience,” said McCarthy. He’s also expecting better first time fix rates, which will save time and money for Daikin Applied Service, as well as keeping its customers happy.

Following the success at Daikin Applied UK, a parallel project is in progress in Germany. “We’re constantly comparing notes with the German team so we can take advantage of best practices and shared learnings,” said McCarthy.

Although it’s been a massive culture shift for Daikin Applied, the company now has the efficiencies and insights it needs to secure its place at the top of the industry. “With Salesforce, we can make the most of every opportunity,” said McCarthy. “We can understand our customers and the market, and provide an end-to-end experience that differentiates us as a business.” 

 
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