In a recent client interaction with Multani Pharmaceuticals Ltd, one of country’s leading and oldest manufacturers of Ayurvedic and Unani medicines, group CEO Mr Nakul Multani and Head of Sales Mr Sachin Bhalerao shared their experience with FieldAssist and the significance of SFA in businesses today.
Here’s an excerpt of the interview conducted at Multani office, Delhi.
- At the outset, could you share some insights about Multani business model, the challenges and complexities that you’d faced that prompted you to sign up with FieldAssist?
Similar to an FMCG distribution model, Multani follows a distribution system that involves a CSA, stockist and a field force to pick up order bookings to service the retailers. The main challenge that we faced was the field force not reporting in the field on time and not working according to our expectations.
There were issues since the markets would open at 11 AM but our field force reached not before 12 and closes much before the market closing time. Hence the total calls that we would expect them to cover was at least 40% lesser. Hence the productivity significantly dipped. FieldAssist application helped us address that issue through its Start Day feature.
- We also understand that you began your association with FieldAssist through a Pilot with couple of users. However, over a period of time, you scaled it up to 100% where the entire field force migrated to the application. What would be the reason behind?
Earlier we faced a major resistance from teams. In addition, the application was available on tabs which was an expense for the company. It was easier for us to migrate totally since the application was available on smartphones and everyone is using one. The resistance was handled by being firm in our approach about the application usage. People need to change with time or else time will change them.
- We have also observed that your usage is at an impressive high of nearly 90%. In this regard how would rate the training sessions that were conducted by FieldAssist for your entire salesforce?
The training sessions were exhaustive and your trainer was successful in downloading the fact after using this application on their mobile phones, their admin tasks are going to reduce drastically. This point was very well taken and appreciated by the sales team.
- How has the reporting mechanism on the dashboard impacted/changed your sales environment and the organizational structure as a whole?
Through continuous follow ups with them and seeing the reports on the dashboard, we were clear on the sales force work movements, competitor movement and assess the company priorities. Accordingly, we would provide guidelines on how to work forward. The dashboard reports helped us immensely.
- How would you describe your day to day experience of working with/ support from FieldAssist?
On a day to day basis, the first email from FieldAssist arrives at 5 AM. It is almost like a wake-up call for me. The application is very useful for us. Now that we have successfully launched it for the field force, we are now targeting the managers to use the application. We would ideally like them to perform their roles and responsibilities through the same application. In a nutshell, the entire sales operations should be automated and remain application dependent only.
- According to you, what role does technology and automation play in sales acceleration? Do you recommend specific tools such as SFA to successfully get there?
Through the application, we are aware about the sales reports, particular movement of our brands, and impact of our strategies in the market faster than earlier. That is the beauty of the SFA tool. It is therefore an absolute need with the way technology is changing. It is a must for any business today. Technology adoption is the easiest thing today. People are aware and take to new technology in no time. It is therefore not a trend but a necessity. Businesses become less dependent on manual intervention and automation takes over. All your business fields are fed in the system which makes insights easier.
- Before we close, can you share some business insights (revenues, secondary sale booking etc.) that you find has been impacted significantly post SFA integration.
The total calls have definitely increased by nearly 40%, the product placement has improved since we have made mandatory for them to click snaps via FieldAssist survey on an outlet visit. We have also seen a surge in our primary revenues.