Auto part supplier implements Microsoft Dynamics CRM to acquire tools for successful growth

February 2, 2016 TM Group

Auto part supplier implements Microsoft Dynamics CRM to acquire tools for successful growth

Auto parts supplier implements Microsoft Dynamics CRM solutions for diversified products.

The Company
An auto parts supplier experienced rapid growth and diversification of services. Its main office provided parts for major brands, while a new segment of its business started selling specialized equipment for smaller markets. Besides providing clients with parts, the company also works with customers as an inventory management advisor.

Initially, the business offered expert advice on how to sort tools and manage projects. More recently, clients shifted demand toward cost-saving solutions. The organization had to adapt to customer needs and the responsibilities of offering more products and services.

The company wanted to find a flexible CRM solution that could keep up with growth and supply critical information to its employees.

The Issues
Before the Microsoft Dynamics CRM implementation, the auto parts supplier used a combination of Microsoft Dynamics SL and spreadsheets to manage and produce orders. The company wanted to create a better system for sharing order details with sales teams without taxing the ERP system. This was especially important for the new organizational divisions and locations that worked in less populated markets. Managers wanted a clear view of what products were sold to different clients and how the new business plans were moving forward.

The company was creating other documents on multiple unconnected systems. Employees used Microsoft Access, Excel, and paper based systems to communicate vendor information and customer demands. These numerous forms were passed around between departments without much consistency and managers believed the lack of visibility wasted time and resources. For example, they expressed concern over the inability to see when or if the company received vendor refunds.

The auto supplier also needed better service performance and wanted to create visible goals for client accounts. When employees pulled up information on specific customers, managers needed a system that displayed the growth plans for the client and how far along the company had progressed against the plan.

When it came time to choose a CRM solution, the company turned to The TM Group because we were already their Microsoft Dynamics SL partner and long-time trusted advisor, to implement a solution to help streamline existing data and find new strategies for business activities. The president of the company told the TM Group that he had to figure out a way to start doing more with less. He believed his organization needed much more productivity to survive the massive changes it had undergone in the last year.

The Solution
The TM Group implemented Microsoft Dynamics CRM integrated with the company’s Microsoft Dynamics SL ERP program to create a unified order process. Microsoft Dynamics CRM is utilized to manage leads, opportunities and activities for their current clients and potential leads.

Sales teams can create sales quotes in the CRM solution and send them to clients. As soon as the quote receives client approval, it converts to an order. Orders are sent to SL via the integration without users having to log into the ERP system. The consistent communication between the CRM and ERP solutions simplifies order processing and avoids wasted time.

Since the new infrastructure plugs the sales teams into overall company performance, the employees who speak directly to clients have complete visibility of important financial and product information. A sales agent may communicate with a client while referring to a full record of the customer’s current credit history and past orders. The company representative can also scroll through a display of the massive number of parts the business sells and the specific numbers used to assign them to clients.

Current Projects
The auto supplier is in the process of working with The TM Group to ensure business activities and data processes stay on track. The partner plans to create a system of alerts that keep users in the know on how projects proceed.

Besides standard CRM type documents, the company wants to use CRM to allow employees to report a multitude of activities, including vendor returns and accidents that cause employee injuries. The TM Group uses the Microsoft Dynamics CRM process ribbon for standard reporting and helps the business create customized forms for regular activities specific to the organization.

Alerts will prevent employees from forgetting about vital information. If a process pauses for too long, the CRM solution will send users a notification informing them of the current status. All users can see who worked on the process previously, what needs to be done in a particular timeframe and goals for specific activities and clients. The system will also send reminders for needed data entry or activity notifications for leadership.

The company currently uses Microsoft Dynamics CRM messaging to share cost savings reports with clients. The CRM program allows users to collect information on the price and quantity of orders and communicate that data with suppliers so they can see the benefits of working with the business.

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