SalesHelper Proposal Generation System (2004)
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The Automation and Drives Division of Siemens Canada is dedicated to providing complete electrical, engineering and automation solutions, along with the right products, software, and services to their clients nationwide. Their customers include some of the world’s largest and most respected companies in the industrial, manufacturing and construction industries, retailers, and leaders in the e-business sector. Backed by Siemens Energy & Automation and with research & development expenditures in excess of $32 million per year, the professionals in the Automation and Drives division are uniquely positioned to help organizations accomplish their goals faster, smarter and cheaper than ever imagined possible.
Although well positioned from a technical standpoint, Siemens Canada A&D find themselves in a highly competitive marketplace and require a sales force that can quickly capture a client and deliver concise professional, competitive quotations. A large percentage of Siemens’ business relies on solutions that are “out-of-the-box.” For a salesperson who does not have a vast amount of engineering experience, however, determining how to configure an “out-of-the-box” solution can be a time consuming process.
After performing an analysis of the A&D sales force work domain, Inovex was able to identify the issues listed above. The next step involved devising a tailor-made solution that would solve each of these issues. Inovex developed the Siemens A&D SalesHelper – a web-based tool that resides on the Siemens corporate Intranet, providing a simple gateway to create and access quotations throughout the country in minutes. This solution involved three of our core competencies:
Drive Configuration Utility
This utility presents the salesperson with specific options for creating a Siemens Masterdrive. Based on the options chosen, the application will automatically determine which components can be added and at what rating. Relying on the program to make these decisions, prevents costly mistakes such as producing a quotation with components that will not fit inside a given enclosure.
This portion of the system allows any salesperson access to all past quotations, but restricts editing access to either the creator of the quotation or the quotation’s account manager. Within the manager, the salesperson can follow-up on quotations, specifying whether or not they were awarded or lost due to technical, pricing, or delivery problems.
Once the desired drives have been specified, the salesperson can specify quantity and profit margin in order to bring the total cost to a price that meets both the needs of Siemens and the client. As a security feature, the salesperson cannot reduce the profit margin under a certain threshold without permission from the administrator.
After entering all quotation information, a proposal package is automatically generated in PDF format for print or e-mail to the client. The package is a standard format for salespeople across the country and delivers:
Client information can be entered into the client database and managed from the SalesHelper tool. To protect regional sales, clients specific to a certain salesperson are only visible to them, and not to other salespeople within the A&D group. The administrator, however, can view and edit all client information.
The Administrator of the SalesHelper Tool has the power to easily change profit margins for salespeople on a quotation by quotation basis. Also included in the administrative console are the following features:
Using SalesHelper Siemens Canada now enjoy the following benefits:
Inovex’s solution was able to cater to each issue facing Siemens, creating a highly beneficial tool that has ultimately increased the productivity of the A&D sales force.