Project Industries and Project Manufacturers have been discovering the capabilities of Salesforce CRM and the Salesforce platform in recent years. Balanced Force blends many years of experience in these markets and in Salesforce implementations is the go-to partner for the execution of projects on the platform. In our previous article we shared the topics our customers struggle most with, in this series of articles we dive in to each of these topics.
Serialized production, customization vs Price
When your product is unique, your customer is probably deeply involved in the design, but when the project is more or less standardized, you want to be in the lead. Can your customers still choose from a large number of options or are you offering a standard product from stock? Higher product variety allows charging higher prices, because perceived value to customers increases. But higher product variety also leads to higher ﬁxed and/or variable costs. Except when you automate the flexibility that is required for supporting product variety and embed it in your business process.
Example, the mountain bike
So I recently bought a new mountain bike, a strong and light frame, big 29” wheels, disc brakes, almost perfect. I replaced the 2 chainring crankset (front gear) with a 3 chainring version, mounted the clip-in pedals, the saddle bag and the bidon holder and I was ready to go.
With a seamless integration between sales, a CPQ (configure-price-quote) solution and an ERP (Enterprise-Resource-Planning) solution your customer can easily select from the options you offer for your product. When the order is closed/won the specification of the product is seamlessly transferred in to ERP. The workorder for production is ready for scheduling and the required components are ready for picking. This combination of platform components provides extra customer value without extra internal handling.
If I could have bought a mountain bike that allowed me to select more options I would also have chosen different tires and another gear shifter/brake lever set.
Balancing personalized and standardized
The level of customization your customers expect depends largely on the sort of product you are selling. Luxury cars come with more options than mountain bikes. For many manufacturing companies the level of customization offered is limited by lack of flexibility of business processes and supporting IT systems. This is where a modern platform solution with flexible automation capabilities can help.
Out of the box the solution supports the business processes for Project Industries and Project Manufacturers, including the supply chain, web shops, portals for vendors and customers, etc. With standard salesforce tools we automate and adjust these processes on demand for our live customers to support various business process changes.
Optimize after go live
We optimize, improve and adapt solutions after go-live, based on our knowledge of, and experience with ERP implementations and systems, as well as business process improvements. We help our customers to reduce handling costs and maximize the usability of systems to enable them to create more customer value.