Our Favorite Salesforce Winter ’21 Releases

We’ve gone through every note of the Salesforce Winter ’21 Release Notes and highlighted the most popular features circulating around the Salesforce community. It’s important to note that most of these newly released features are only available in Salesforce Lightning and not Classic. The features outlined in our blog are some of the best features available in the Lightning interface.

Work.com

Broadcast Messaging -2020 has drastically impacted the way companies engage with their employees and customers. Broadcast Messaging empowers companies to proactively reach their clients faster and on their favorite channel, SMS. Broadcast messaging lets you easily select a recipient list, choose from prebuilt templates, and send it to mass quantities.

Work.com broadcast messaging

Queue Management – Today, businesses need a trusted platform that is versatile enough to support ongoing changes. Queue Management empowers safe and seamless in-person interactions as the world starts to return to work. Queue Management is a Salesforce-native tool that lets organizations scale on-site capacity to ensure that local regulations are complied with.

Sales Cloud

Opportunity Deal Change Highlights – Highlight what has changed in the pipeline to see which deals increased, decreased, were pushed out, or pulled in. Text colors and arrows highlight whether deal amounts or close dates have changed during the last seven days. Hover over an arrow to get extended details about the opportunity.

Salesforce Opportunity Deal Change Highlights

Multi-Cloud Support for Billing – “Now you can create invoices and bills from CPQ orders, B2B Commerce orders, Service Cloud work orders, Velocity quotes, or any other quoting/ordering system that customers have” (Salesforce).

High-Velocity Sales Enhancements – With High-Velocity Sales, you now have the capability to organize and share sales cadences in folders. Additionally, Salesforce now allows you to pause sales cadences and change step ownership. Users can also insert free time into emails for scheduling directly from Lightning.

Service Cloud

Field Service: Time Sheets – Service executives can now create, edit, and take action on employees’ timesheets and expenses. Timesheets now become connected to your field service’s operation, allowing you insight into how your mobile staff is working. You can now view timesheets, record working hours, and send on-the-go approval timesheets. View Salesforce’s YouTube Time Sheets video to learn more.

Service Cloud Field Service Time Sheets

Service Setup Assistant – Achieve quicker time to value for customer service delivery with Service Cloud. “The Service Setup Assistant provides a two-step guided setup, out-of-the-box configuration, and built-in agent productivity best practices” (Salesforce).

Omni Supervisor Enhancements – Omni Supervisor Enhancements now allow supervisors to view voice transcripts in real-time as the phone call progresses, allowing them to jump in when agents need help.

Marketing

Customer 360 Audiences – With Salesforce’s enterprise-wide customer data platform, marketers can now collect, unify, segment, and enable all their client data. Customer 360 audiences now becomes your single source of truth to enable personalized experiences for every customer across every touchpoint.

Interaction Studio Enhancements – Business users can configure, evaluate, and incorporate machine-learning algorithms with Einstein Personalization Recipes that consider the characteristics, behaviors, affinities, and purpose of an individual to assess and deliver individualized recommendations. Einstein Personalization Decisions assesses both the probability of someone engaging with a specific offer or action and the business value of that offer or action to the company.

Journey Builder: Path Optimizer – By allowing you to test journey routes, not just message material, Path Optimizer unlocks marketing experimentation in new ways. In a journey, run one or several tests and choose the winning paths by engagement or on-demand. Only the winning route is received by new contacts. To gain insights and improve the experience of your customers, you can continue to run tests.

Marketing Journey Builder Path Optimizer

The Salesforce Winter ’21 Release Notes brings exciting new features for Salesforce employees and customers. If you have any questions about the summer release notes, please visit our website. If you missed out on our Salesforce Summer ’20 release blog, you can read it here.

Sources

https://trailhead.salesforce.com/en/content/learn/modules/winter-21-release-highlights

https://www.salesforce.com/blog/whats-in-the-winter-21-release/

https://releasenotes.docs.salesforce.com/en-us/winter21/release-notes/salesforce_release_notes.htm

Trailhead Photos

Salesforce.com

Same Day Construction Estimates With Salesforce

Putting together a construction estimate can take days, sometimes weeks, depending on the project’s size. With a great deal of information to collect, the industry needs a solution that could quickly generate accurate estimates and immediately send them out with tracking included. Utilizing the power of Salesforce, we built an automated Estimator to generate, send, and track same-day estimates for WarrenCo Construction and Paving. Our latest case study involves:

      • The ability to create and send out same-day construction estimates
      • How we digitally enabled the construction industry with Salesforce
      • How we accelerated pipeline progression with an automated estimator
      • Our continued business process optimization with Salesforce

Early responsiveness plays an essential role in the construction industry, so being first and accurate can make or break the deal. Fill out the form below to see how we were able to digitally enable the construction industry with Salesforce.

Vendor Management With Manufacturing Cloud

We discussed the advantage of moving some parts of your assembly back to North America in our previous blog, Thinking of Moving Production Onshores? Adding Salesforce’s Manufacturing Cloud to your Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) gives your company a central location for all your shared data with partners, customers, vendors and more having full access.

This blog will focus on the importance of vendor and performance management and how vendor management is critical for any companies profitability, deliverability, and overall quality of your parts or tools.

Vendor Qualification and Management

Manufacturing companies go through a whole vetting process to validate their primary and secondary vendors. Some companies could have multiple vendors delivering the same parts, where some vendors might only have one unique part with only one vendor. The process of qualifying vendors becomes critical for manufacturers so that they know their first versus secondary vendor to have a consistent supply chain process. Once you start moving your schedule around, you may be in a situation where maybe a vendor can’t react as quickly as another. You need to be able to quickly look in your system and go, “Maybe vendor B can accommodate more than vendor A.”

On the other side, it’s critical to keep your vendor accountable. The vendor’s responsibility should include deliveries, part quality, and inspection.

Manufacturers shouldn’t be waiting for a truck to pull up, only to realize there’s a quality problem while unloading. Quality checks and inspections should always be done at the vendor’s location. It’s important to take into account some critical questions about your vendor like:

    • Are their quality checks good?
    • Have they implemented correct action for defective protects?
    • What is their on-time delivery?
    • What is their competitive pricing?

Manufacturing Cloud and Vendor Management

Having a system like Salesforce that supports vendor management and performance is critical.

Manufacturing Cloud gives you the ability to have a centralized location that allows you to collect and see all your data at a 360-degree view. Everyone in your company and partner ecosystem can all be on the same page regarding sales agreements, vendor management, analytical data, tracking, and more.

Manufacturing Cloud allows you to understand the quality of all your crucial metrics regarding vendor management and performance. With real-time reports, you’ll be able to have the data proving which vendor is standing out among the others.

Tracking in Salesforce helps manufacturers stay up to date in real-time. For example, if a defect occurs on the floor or in the field, you can instantly track the return material. When tracking is managed via Salesforce, the trickle-down effect gives you the ability to make sure your vendors communicate and react with your changes.

ERP’s aren’t designed to do this, but you have the flexibility inside Salesforce to keep everyone on the same page in real-time.

Corrao Group’s Manufacturing and Salesforce experience

Since 2008, Corrao Group has helped manufacturers utilize Salesforce to create an automated closed-loop system for channel-centric manufacturing. We’ve worked with nearly 1,000 customers, implementing, customizing, and optimizing over 2,100 Salesforce projects. Implementing Salesforce without a detailed and customized plan can lead to wasted time and money spent on small fixes along its lifecycle. With a trusted Salesforce partner like us, we can help you maximize your investment. For more information, please visit our website.

Our Salesforce Manufacturing Cloud Blogs:

Sources 

Salesforce

5,000 Cancer Rides Donated + Harvest of Hope

Since 2006, we have been working with the Emilio Nares Foundation (ENF) to help support their flagship foundation, Ride with Emilio. Ride with Emilio provides free transportation for low-income children with cancer to make sure they attend their life-saving treatment appointments, on time, every time. Ride with Emilio has traveled over 1 million miles and safely transported over 4,000 children in Southern California.

At Corrao Group, we are excited to announce that we have passed over 5,000 CANCER RIDES DONATED! We are beyond proud to help ENF and will continue every day to help impact their organization and their kids in any way we can. We are incredibly privileged to work with founders Richard and Diane Nares and the entire ENF staff. From everyone at Corrao Group, thank you for all your hard work, dedication, and love. Thank you to our customers, as we would not be able to continue to donate to ENF without your partnership.

In light of the ongoing pandemic, the Emilio Nares Foundation had to cancel their annual physical event, Harvest for Hope. HOWEVER, the children still need all of us more than ever. Together we can offer them a chance to continue to get their treatment throughout 2020 and 2021. We ask that you register for their virtual auction, Harvest for Hope on Oct. 2nd-10th 2020, by clicking here: HarvestforHope2020.org. You can also text H4H2020 to 76278 and register on your phone!

Salesforce Summer ’20 Release Updates

Going through every note of the Salesforce Summer ’20 Release Notes can be tedious. We’ve highlighted the most popular features circulating around the Salesforce community with a description of each new release. It’s important to note that most of these newly released features are only available in Salesforce Lightning and not Classic.

Sales Cloud

    • Kanban View Enhancements:
      • Enable sales reps to update key opportunity fields from the kanban view quickly. Add a little fun to your sales journey by celebrating closed-won deals with new celebration moments in the kanban. Click the link below to watch to see the Kanban View enhancements in action!
    • High-Velocity Sales: Einstein Call Coaching
      • Sales teams can now optimize interactions with customers with conversational intelligence. Post-call insights give managers intelligent trend analysis ensuring teams can build and refine sales strategies based on conversation trends.
    • High-Velocity Sales: My Feed Alerts
      • Sales reps can respond to their prospects’ engagement in real-time to maximize outreach while the lead is hot. For example, sales reps can tailor email arrival times to increase the likelihood that recipients read them. If a sales rep knows that their contact always reads their email when they come back from lunch, you can schedule the email to arrive at 1:00 pm. The new Scheduled Emails component lets reps update the content of a scheduled email and change its scheduled date and time.

Service Cloud

    • Service Cloud Voice
      • “Natively integrate the telephony channel within Service Cloud. Voice calls can now be part of the dynamic workspace, alongside digital channels. Agents use an omnichannel module to accept an interaction. With real-time call transcripts, connect workflows and next best actions to voice conversations. Deeper integration drives agent efficiency, customer satisfaction, and supervisor insights” (Salesforce).
    • Einstein Reply Recommendations
      • Give your agents the power of AI that automatically suggests recommendations to customer requests. Einstein is continually learning about your customers, giving you suggested replies based on a list of approved responses.
    • Field Service Lightning: Deep Link Actions
      • Mobile workers can now use the Field Service Mobile app through deep linking. “With deep linking, you can specify URL schemes for other apps and send users to external content inside the Mobile Publisher app” (Trailblazer Community). Deliver better experiences for your mobile team by adding deep links to specific actions and flows to reduce the number of taps it takes to trigger an action or flow.

Marketing

    • Content Builder – Interactive Email
      • Marketers can now evolve the inbox experience for customers with Email Form Block. Using five different templates, marketers can now create in-mail forms to have subscribers complete forms without leaving their inbox.
    • Datorama: Data Lake
      • “Data Lake is a new, comprehensive solution for processing granular, raw, and non-aggregated marketing data for use within Datorama” (Salesforce). Marketers can extract and store raw data at scale, and load it easily into Datorama for analysis, visualization, insights, reporting, and activations.
    • Einstein Copy Insights
      • In an intuitive dashboard, marketers can gather language-related feedback regarding subject lines to find out what drives engagement and enhances campaign performance.
    • Einstein Messaging Insights
      • Einstein Messaging Insights quickly and efficiently analyzes your email and customer journey activity providing automatic key insights into what factors impact your email sends.
    • Pardot: Einstein Attribution
      • Einstein Attribution is a new AI-powered multi-touch allocation model that tracks all of your campaigns’ conversion trends and highlights which channels and campaigns are most successful.
    • Pardot: B2B Marketing Analytics Plus
      • Discover a connected, smart, and enterprise-ready experience that links data across all of your marketing applications and business units with further enhanced predictive insights and intelligence. Comprehend what happened with your campaign, why it happened, and what could happen in the future.

Manufacturing Cloud

    • Account Manager Targets
      • You can now create, assign, or edit targets for your organization to achieve performance goals based on product volume, revenue, or custom metrics.
    • Key Account and Product Management
      • Manage large data sets, boost efficiency, and improve forecast accuracy by defining key accounts and product parameters representing tiering structures within your organization.
    • Account-Based Forecasting Enhancements
      • New and enhanced Account-Based Forecast reporting gives you more versatility in assessing business results. Create comprehensive comparative reports that allow you to analyze account-based forecasts by product and time period more efficiently.
    • Sales Agreement Enhancements
      • New and enhanced sales agreement reporting allows you more flexibility in assessing business results. Develop comprehensive composite reports that show products and product schedules for sales agreements.
    • Einstein Analytics for Manufacturing Enhancements
      • Track and analyze changes in forecasts at the account and product level. With the new multi-currency support, users can use pre-built templates to analyze data in any of the supported currencies within their organization.

Work.com

    • Workplace Command Center
      • Access return-to-work readiness from a single hub to safely reopen workplaces. Manage and monitor your staff’s health, completion of training, shift scheduling, and the preparedness of your facilities.
    • Shift Management
      • Streamline employee and workplace readiness by allowing employees to specify their availability, manage shifts, and comply with the social distancing rules upon their arrival window.
    • Emergency Program Management
      • Help organizations support residents, neighborhoods, and agencies in crisis times by providing access to emergency information and replacing manual processes with streamlined application processes.

The Salesforce Summer ’20 Release Notes does bring exciting new features for Salesforce employees and customers. However, customers still using classic will not be able to use these features. If you would like to learn more about migrating to lightning from classic or have any questions about the summer release notes, please visit our website.

Sources

https://www.salesforce.com/releases/summer-20/overview/

https://trailhead.salesforce.com/en/content/learn/modules/summer-20-release-highlights

https://releasenotes.docs.salesforce.com/en-us/summer20/release-notes/salesforce_release_notes.htm?d=cta-body-promo-86

Salesforce.com

Salesforce Photos

Manufacturing Cloud: Thinking of Moving Production Onshore?

Manufacturers face a combination of robust decision making components that are factors for any business globally. With the ongoing unknown of 2020, and incoming massive new tariffs (trade deal phase 1), moving some parts of your production back to North America could become the new norm as early as 2021. The component price will always be lower overseas, but what if you could control your entire manufacturing process? Gaining flexibility is now available with the use of Salesforce’s Manufacturing Cloud. Before discussing the motives of moving production back onshores, it’s important to understand how manufacturing evolved.

Early Manufacturing

In the early 1970-1980s, manufacturing within the United States was booming. Local manufacturing jobs were thriving, and all production was done here on shores through quick runs. The era of quick runs soon became an era of the past. Having to go back and forth on prototypes became expensive, and with rising new technology came a vision of manufacturing processes (Structural Design) done quicker and cheaper. China began creating large factories with low-cost labor and tolling resulting in a more affordable and faster way of manufacturing. With labor costs so cheap, China would go on to become the world leader in manufacturing.

Starting to Move Production Back

As 2020 moves forward and companies start to prepare for 2021, moving some operations to North America is becoming the priority with most manufacturers. When you factor in the new tariffs from the trade deal and managing the supply chain from afar, it becomes a lot to maintain. Final assembly, software packaging, trail producing, and testing are aspects of production that can be moved back to the United States or Mexico. Moving production back onshore is an opportunity to take some of the raw components and assemble them in the US. For example, final assembly in Mexico could become extremely cost-effective with easy access of driving materials across the border. Having one-week shipments being readily available vs. six-week shipments allows you to be less dependent on your supply chain. Integrating your Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) with Manufacturing Cloud will give you control over your entire business processes.

Salesforce Manufacturing Cloud

The advantage of adding Manufacturing Cloud to your S&OP is that it can drive demand, and tell your factory what to build in real-time based upon your specific schedule. Adding modules in your system through real-time reporting in manufacturing will provide you visibility into what your factories are currently building, what product is coming in, and more. With a central location of all your data and correct scheduling, your sales team will be updated and on the same page. Data spread out across multiple spreadsheets or silos will cause various problems for your company in tracking, updating, and sharing deals. Overall, integrating your manufacturing processes into manufacturing cloud gives you the flexibility of not being so dependent on products coming from offshore.

salesforce-manufacturing-cloud-image

Our Manufacturing Experience

Corrao Group’s experience and discipline with manufacturing pain points date back to 1982 with our Managing Partner. Jack Corrao has developed numerous operational infrastructures to support hardware and software companies to deliver the best in breed solutions. Since 2008, Corrao Group has been helping manufacturers utilize Salesforce to create an automated closed-loop system for channel-centric manufacturing. We’ve worked with nearly 1,000 customers, implementing, customizing, and optimizing Salesforce and have been everyday power users ourselves since 2008. Corrao Group can help you maximize your investments in Salesforce and Manufacturing Cloud. For more information, please visit our Salesforce page. To learn more information about us, please visit our website.

Salesforce - the ultimate work from home platform

Manufacturing Cloud: Struggling with Dated Collections?

The invoicing process of today is primarily based around manual work that requires chasing down payments. Companies start to live in the vicious cycle of Accounts Receivable (AR), continually having to follow up with the majority of their outstanding invoices.

We created EZ-AR™ to help companies utilize automated and tracked emails within custom-flexible journeys that react to the recipient’s behavior. It automatically follows up with your customers until payment is received and allows for a real-time view into the customer’s digital interactions.

It’s essential to dive into the pain points that are slowing your AR agents down.

Pain Points

It’s a familiar story for AR agents. They manually scanning paper, type in the information, and then print and sign paper checks. The invoice gets sent to the black hole of customer communication and results in the customer taking days, sometimes weeks, to pay the invoice. AR agents spend most of their time chasing down their clients for payments via emails and phone calls.

Now repeat that process for 10, 100, or 1,000 invoices. It’s no wonder why the industry average Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) is 42 days. Traditional AR methods are no longer efficient, and the archaic manual processes of AR are slowing down your team with the labor-intense and time-consuming process of collection. We created EZ-AR™; to digitize and automate the archaic business process of AR methods while allowing the required staff 100% visibility via the Salesforce platform.

EZ-AR™ Solution

Corrao Group developed EZ-AR™, the first AR solution built on the Salesforce platform that automates the soul-draining process of collecting invoices. Break beyond the traditional AR processes and quickly generate and send invoices while utilizing the tracking capabilities in Salesforce and Pardot. With your AR automated, you can reduce up to 12 hours per agent per month and reduce your average DSO up to 50%. Reports and dashboards in Salesforce track your invoices by status, expected pay date, and more to keep you updated.

Collection help with EZ-AR

The NEW AR Process

EZ-AR™ is a simple automated process for AR agents. Quickly generate the invoice within Salesforce, along with the necessary data being pulled from the quote or bill associated with the account. The time of completion for producing an invoice with EZ-AR should be no longer than 2 minutes.

Once the invoice is generated, the AR agent can select an automated journey that tracks invoicing activity from the client’s account. If they don’t take any action, you can manually, or automatically, elevate this invoice or choose another automated journey to intervene.

Throughout the journey, the EZ-AR™ users will be able to view all of the invoicing activity, which includes: if they opened the email or not, if they have paid, if they entered an expected payment date, and if they have downloaded the invoice. AR agents are no longer at the mercy of the client’s reporting. Instead, they now have all the control over the client because they have high-level visibility into the clients’ activities taken on the invoice. The process of EZ-AR™ allows the agents to eliminate the traditional guessing methods of Accounts Receivable transactions.

Quicker payment terms help the company retain a low DSO, and the consistency of EZ-AR™ alleviates cash flow related issues.

Manufacturing Cloud

EZ-AR™ is only available for purchase with Salesforce’s new Manufacturing Cloud. Manufacturing Cloud takes the current pain points of the manufacturing industry and turns it into an experience that is flexible in reacting to the customer’s ever-changing demands. Read more about how manufacturing cloud could help your company here:

Please visit our website if you want to learn more about how EZ-AR™ can change your AR processes positively.

WFH? Invest in Salesforce

Successfully running a company from home requires the right culture, employees, procedures, and maybe most importantly, technology. Some businesses who haven’t invested in a cloud-computing software such as Salesforce have been having a hard time adjusting to working from home. Salesforce is a cloud-based software that provides customer relationship management (CRM) and a suite of apps that go along with sales, service, marketing automation, and more. Salesforce becomes your central location to store all your important data, accounts, and deals. With a newly designed mobile app, take work on the go and be just as productive as you were on your computer. This allows businesses to run their entire company within Salesforce, supporting all departments with real-time data.

Managing Your Sales Pipeline with Sales Cloud

Sales Cloud is a customer relationship platform (CRM) designed to support sales and marketing by bringing all your customer data into one central location. Leverage Sales Cloud to manage and automate day-to-day sales activities including lead assignments, quote generation, forecasting, Einstein Analytics, and more. Additionally, your sales staff will have full visibility into every deal, account, opportunity, customer, and lost deals. Sales Cloud workflows and task automation help you create tasks and a process to help speed up your sales cycle. When implemented correctly, Sales Cloud helps save you time and builds long-lasting customers.

Servicing Your Customers with Service Cloud

Service Cloud is a customer relationship service platform designed to help you manage customer support issues quicker and increase first-visit resolution. With historical data on every customer interaction, your team can personalize your service based on their problems and history. Additionally, Service Cloud offers a multitude of tools to help you meet the needs of your customers. Some extensions for Service Cloud include: Field Service Lightning (FSL), Knowledge Base, Web2Case, Email2Case, and Customer Analytics. When implemented correctly, Service Cloud can improve customer communication, enable team collaboration, and give you full visibility into the health of your customer base.

Automated Lead Nurturing with Pardot

Pardot is a marketing automation platform designed to help companies engage leads and customers, support sales with qualified leads, and grow relationships. According to Salesforce, “Customers have seen sales revenue increase by 34% and marketing effectiveness increase by 37%” with Pardot (Pardot.com). Pardot gives you the ability to personalize your customer’s journey wit automated campaigns, targeted messaging, and predictive intelligence. Additionally, design and create email templates, content, landing pages, and more inside of Pardot. If you would like to learn more about Pardot, please visit our blog.

A Complete 360-View for Manufacturers with Manufacturing Cloud

Manufacturing Cloud gives manufacturers full visibility into their entire business operations. Manufacturing Cloud extends benefits to all your partners to collaborate across the same forecast order and demand data in one single source of truth. New features such as sales agreements gives manufacturers insights into committed and actual order volumes, performance against the forecast, and other time-phased metrics. Forecasting gives manufactures the ability to take control of their business with smarter business decisions based on analytics. If you would like to learn more about Manufacturing Cloud, please read the blogs below:

Virtual Collaboration with Quip

Quip provides your team with a messaging collaboration platform that helps transform productivity and resolves issues faster. Provide your team with the ability to create, discuss, and work faster with real-time documents, spreadsheets, and data that connects inside of Salesforce. With full integration, your employees will no longer have to work together in multiple systems. Quip becomes your central location to collaborate with other employees on deals, documents, and more. Furthermore, Quip has a mobile app to view, update, and work on the road.

Maximize your Salesforce Investment

Since 2002, our Salesforce experience has benefited thousands of clients and projects. We understand how flexible the Salesforce platform is and how it supports every department in your business. The key to maximizing your Salesforce investment is to implementing the platform company-wide. If your business is struggling to work from home without a cloud-based technology, it’s time to invest in a technology like Salesforce.

Tips for Running Your Small Business From Home

The COVID 19 Pandemic has left a number of small business owners braving uncharted waters in regard to their business operations. Every small business owner is dealing with challenges surrounding reports, budgeting, employee satisfaction, and engagement, as well as customer communication.

Larger business owners have been generally able to continue forward without any major organizational shifts due to established infrastructure, discipline, scale of operations, and experience.

Since 2010, small business owners have had the opportunity to develop their operations in a bullish economy. The previous decade was a time for entrepreneurs to chase unprecedented growth.

With this upturn came more opportunists looking to develop their brand. Fast forward to today, it’s easy to become overwhelmed as difficult questions and decisions are being presented.

As a small business owner since 2002, I believe there are some practices that can be implemented to solidify your business operations and brace yourselves to continue moving forward in these uncertain times.

Direct Reports and Budgeting

If you haven’t already done so, bring all your direct reports together. Ask your finance team to provide you detailed cash-flow analysis and the budgets for the current fiscal year as well as any long term initiatives (This pandemic will pass, and the opportunity for organizational growth will present itself again).

The trick here is to look in descending order from your most expensive to the least expensive expense. Don’t chase your staff down and waste valuable time for something you are spending $20-50 on. You want to focus on the thousand-dollar expenses, i.e. 80/20 rule of business.

Lastly, look at your monthly assessment and towards the future. In these times, you might have to go to your vendors or partners to ask if you can pause a contract.

If you’re making a large payment, go back and ask for smaller lump sums. You want to get the lowest cost burn and stretch it out to flexible terms that you are comfortable with.

During these times, humanity’s inherently good characteristics will shine through, and there will be opportunities to further develop existing business relationships.

Communication is Key

It’s essential to get your staff together and let them know that you will be making intelligent decisions with both their interests and the interests of the business at heart. Communicate and meet with your employees weekly to assess their situations in a professional sense, but also in a personal sense.

Engage in discussions about family life, work from home setups, any challenges that have presented themselves to your employees. Remind them that you are available as a resource to them just as much now (if not even more so), as you were before.

Check to see if there is anything that can be provided to them equipment-wise, to allow them to get as close to they were before concerning efficiency and comfort. Maybe they will need an ergonomic desk for a physical condition or equipment to enhance their current work from home environment.

Being transparent and present to employees can provide a sense of comfort and continuity that is invaluable in the current cultural climate.

In-House Projects

While consumer business is slowing down, you need to start analyzing what your staff is doing. Let them know what is expected of them daily and what they need to do to be effectively contributing employees.

A sense of knowledge as to the responsibilities that are to be performed will ensure that there are fewer cases of employees trying to either overextend themselves or avoid work.

What are the other essential in-house tasks you could be doing? One task could be having your employees document and design customer success stories. How about having your marketing team update old content on your website?

Another task that could provide value to your business is cleaning your customer database. A deep clean of your system data will improve your employees production.

One task that is critical is staying connected to our customers. Remind your consumers that you are present and available to them and will continue to operate as was before.

Don’t Panic

The biggest thing you need to try to avoid is panicking. You have to plan properly, leverage your staff, and make smart decisions.

Don’t try to do it all yourself. You have smart people around you.

Delegate work to qualified employees as a means of taking more time to focus on operations if that is an option.

Segment your workforce into smaller teams or groups that can work well together to not only make sure that work is done, but to also provide a system of checks and balances to ensure that client-facing work and products are meeting company standards.

At Corrao Group, we make sure to celebrate our new business wins as a way to bring our company together during these tough times.

We have instituted weekly games and happy hours to spend more time with our staff while we are all working from home.

It’s still essential to build a family-like organization through the utilization of the technologies available (for example: Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, etc..).

Be Positive

You have a responsibility to lead and be positive.

Remember, people are looking to you and drawing energy from the example that you are setting. Be a positive force to drive your company in the direction in which you wanted it to go and foresaw it going before the turn of the century.

Your employees will notice your body language and the actions you take.

This is not the time to be reactionary. Be proactive, and if you need help, ask!

Jack Corrao

Struggling with your business?

If you are struggling with managing your business in these times, please email us at WFH@corraofgroup.com. You can speak with our Managing Partner, Jack Corrao on any questions you may have about running your business from home. If you’d like to receive our weekly blog on our WFH series, please fill out the form below.

Frustrated With Your Manufacturing Sampling Program?

Is your company struggling to find the benefits of a good manufacturing sampling or seeding program? Sampling programs allow your company to catch any discrepancies or feedback before your production is in full swing. Without a closed-loop strategy, your company might not be seeing the results you want or expected. Our sampling program helped Kensington™, a leader of desktop and mobile accessories, see a 7,000% increase in ROI.

Program Pain Points

Sampling programs can make or break your product’s success. Companies tend to write off sampling programs without realizing the benefits a good program can bring in terms of end-user sales and customer feedback. Here are some pain points Corrao Group has found for manufacturing companies managing their sampling programs:

    • Trouble communicating the value of the samples
    • Missed feedback opportunities from potential customers about your product
    • No ability to track distributed samples
    • Samples are not personalized to the end-user
    • Difficulty collecting customer feedback during their unboxing to usage phases
    • Lack of auto-escalation to resolution as issues arise

Corrao Group’s Solution

Kensington™ partnered with the Corrao Group to develop an automated way of managing sample units. After optimizing their Salesforce instance, Corrao Group helped develop and implement a closed-loop strategy that involved sampling out new products to new or existing customers. The sampling program would require a streamlined distribution strategy, tracking capabilities, hands-off reporting, and clear ROI. The white-glove experience would become known as “ProConcierge” and would involve Corrao Group creating and assisting in:

    • Creating buyer personas to identify and prioritize qualified candidates
    • Building a content map for supporting marketing collateral
    • Creating weekly survey emails for the sampling program
    • Packages carrying docking stations were tracked through Salesforce, and Pardot was connected to ensure that the appropriate feedback requests were automatically delivered weekly
    • Customizing Salesforce reports to provide visibility into the leads generated weekly
    • Standardizing Kensington™’s Salesforce process and implementing data requirements throughout their sales process

Salesforce Products Used

    • Sales Cloud
    • Pardot
    • Einstein Analytics

Other Products Used

    • Form Assembly

The hand-off process included the creation of step-by-step demonstration videos by the team at Corrao Group to assist with training as new users joined the ProConceirge team at Kensington™. In total, Kensington™ saw a 7,000% increase in ROI, $3M in influenced sales, and over 1,000 units shipped. To learn more about our assistance in ProConceirge, download our white paper.

Salesforce’s Manufacturing Cloud

Our Sampling/Seeding program is exclusively built, configured, and optimized for Salesforce’s Manufacturing Cloud Platform. Manufacturing Cloud extends benefits to all your partners to collaborate across the same forecast order and demand data in one single source of truth. A new era is emerging for manufacturing, and it allows manufacturers to have complete control over the ability to operate their business in a much more profitable point of view.

Salesforce’s new Manufacturing Cloud will allow customers and their partners to have company-wide visibility into all their business processes. We understand that optimizing your Salesforce starts with optimizing your business processes. We’ve worked with nearly 1,000 customers; implementing, customizing, and optimizing Salesforce and have been everyday power users ourselves since 2008. Corrao Group can help you maximize your investments in Salesforce and Manufacturing Cloud. For more information, please visit our Salesforce page.