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Look to the ‘cloud’ for efficiencies

SaaS sales force management from SalesAtWork

Communicating with field staff has, in the past, often been a costly and time-consuming proposition. But companies like SalesAtWork are offering an alternative solution with efficiencies many organisations have come to appreciate.

SalesAtWorks offers a new breed of sales force management solution known as Software as a Service (SaaS). This means companies don't need their own computer infrastructure. Each client pays a monthly fee to use the SalesAtWork system. "This makes it much easier for clients to get going and use a sophisticated business solution, without the need to invest large amounts of capital buying, installing and running enterprise software," says SalesAtWork Chief Executive, Colin Rosen.

SalesAtWork has been established for around nine years and as a software services for company for just on six years. It is a Melbourne-based company with offices in Brisbane, Sydney and Auckland.

"Companies don't have to invest tens of thousands to millions of dollars in hardware and software to get going. The product is available tomorrow if they want it. They can avoid many months of having to build a model that suits the company by using SalesAtWork," he says.

Features include:

- Store management
- Product management
- Territory management
- Visit scheduling
- Activity management
- Orders
- Asset management
Spatial views

Mr. Rosen says using the software is as safe as using online banking. “Our product is username and password protected. As long as you don’t disclose that, there are no security issues about using our system.”

The SalesAtWork software has been designed specifically for those companies that want to concentrate on retail sales and service, not IT and complex software solutions.

This is one reasons Teamworks Retail Services chose the SaaS offering Teamworks is a field marketing organization, represented in every state with a staff of almost 350 nationally.

“SaaS has been a good reminder that our core business is not software development or operating banks of servers. We’re a retail and sales service company and so long as the server, data and access is secure, and we can import and export data from the system, then there is no need for us to physically own the infrastructure.

“It’s SalesAtWork’s job to look after the day-to-day health of the system and this has been good with 100 per cent uptime (in the 12 months Teamworks has been using the product). We don’t incur any R&D or customization expense, it’s done for us and provides us with new features.”

Structure and flexibility

Teamworks IT and Systems Development Manager, Simon Clavin, says: "SalesAtWork has given us the structure and flexibility we need to handle our crew and customers. It's tricky enough organising the visits and activities for 250 people each week on behalf of more than 50 customers, but the real challenge is being able to re-organise when things change.

"SalesAtWork lets us set up rules and task priorities and the system schedules the customer tasks as part of a visit and allocates these to the correct rep. This is how we can put hundreds of people onto an urgent project, like a product recall or a last-minute promotion, and not disrupt our normal bread and butter visits," he says.

Using SalesAtWork means most of the activities go to the field representatives electronically. Teamworks representatives receive and transact their work Smartphones fitted with the dedicated SalesAtWork mobile application. In regional areas where employees may only work a few hours per week, they use the SalesAtWork website to print worksheets and then update their results into the website once the visit is complete.

"It used to take up to 10 days to receive and collate data from large national programs using paper," says Mr Clavin, "this meant most of the customer analysis focused on the end result, as it was too late to deal with issues such as missing promotional material or other gaps."

SalesAtWork's Colin Rosen says this problem has been solved with a centrally organised workflow that ensures all the data and information is 'live' and up to date, and customers can monitor important campaigns and make adjustments, based on the feedback from visits just completed.

More Information: www.salesatwork.com