High-Tech Manufacturer Boosts Productivity by 20 Percent, Achieves ROI in Six Months

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1 Microsoft Dynamics Customer Solution Case Study High-Tech Manufacturer Boosts Productivity by 20 Percent, Achieves ROI in Six Months Overview Country or Region: United States Industry: Manufacturing High-tech manufacturing Customer Profile Founded in 1955, Panduit is a leading manufacturer and provider of components and tools used to optimize management of communications network infrastructure. Business Situation After facing formidable challenges with its two previous installations of customer relationship management solutions, including low adoption by its sales force, Panduit opted to implement a solution that offered greater ease of use and flexibility. Solution Working with Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Hitachi Consulting, the company completed deployment of Microsoft Dynamics CRM to 650 sales team members in two months. Benefits Gained better business control through full adoption of technology Increased sale force productivity by 20 percent Reduced cost of sale by 3 percent in three months Greater sales consistency and coordination Achieved ROI in six months The ease of use of Microsoft Dynamics CRM has played a huge role in ensuring that all 650 of our sales team members worldwide use the system, which is something we never could accomplish with Salesforce.com or Oracle Sales Online. Ron Partridge, Group VP of Global Sales and Marketing, Panduit To fully standardize its sales processes and improve the rigor of sales reporting, Panduit a leading maker of communications network components needed a new customer relationship management (CRM) system. Panduit experienced challenges with its two previous CRM deployments. Both Salesforce.com and Oracle Sales Online were costly to modify. And, neither system meshed with the company s server, so sales staff routinely had to reenter data. In each case, adoption was low, which complicated lead tracking, limited opportunities for coordinated selling, and blunted the effectiveness of performance evaluation. Panduit searched for a CRM system that was easy to use and cost-effective to deploy and extend. After implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM in only 60 days, Panduit has increased its sales force productivity by 20 percent and expects payback on its investment in six months.

2 With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, we have the ability to measure and report on critical values such as the number of leads closed against a specific target, down to the individual sales person so that we can really fine-tune our process and execution going forward. Ron Partridge, Group VP of Global Sales and Marketing, Panduit Situation Headquartered in Tinley Park, Illinois, Panduit manufactures components and equipment for telephone and computer system networks from cabling, outlets, and terminals to installation tools. Founded in 1955, the privately held company has more than 3,500 employees and annual revenue of around U.S.$1 billion. In addition to its manufacturing centers in the United States, China, Singapore, the Netherlands, and Costa Rica, Panduit operates sales and service centers in more than 60 countries and has a global sales force of 650 people. Over the past five decades, the company has earned a reputation for its continuous innovation and leadership. In fact, Unified Physical Infrastructure SM the trade name for its methodology and solution portfolio for data infrastructure consolidation is recognized as industry-standard technology. The recent proliferation of data centers and increasing demand for fixed and mobile broadband access has opened up tremendous growth opportunities for the company, as the need for its expertise and solutions has surged worldwide. To capitalize on this growth, the company recognized the need to increase the efficiency of its sales processes and improve visibility into sales performance. To advance its position as an industry leader and maximize market penetration, Panduit relies heavily on the knowledge and execution capabilities of its extended sales team. The company has a complex sales value chain that consists of dealers, vendors, representatives, systems integrators, and direct employees. To ensure that all the people who support this value chain can reference accurate pricing, parts, and design information for its solutions, the company needed technology that enabled real-time access to information and easy-to-use collaboration tools. The company s recent decision to focus on selling end-to-end solutions, rather than individual components, amplified the importance of shared access to comprehensive customer and product information across its sales force. Two Different Customer Relationship Management Systems in Four Years The company s customer relationship management systems, however, were unable to meet these needs. Between 2005 and 2009, the company had moved from Salesforce.com to Oracle Sales Online and contemplated switching to another system. Sales personnel were disappointed by the lack of seamless interoperability between Salesforce.com and Microsoft Office Outlook, which they relied on to handle their critical business communication. Similarly, Oracle Sales Online did not offer the kind of integration with or a level of ease-of-use hoped for by sales staff. Without this integration, they were forced to spend valuable time each day manually transferring prospect and customer information from messages into the customer relationship management database. Further, this system was difficult and costly to modify to align with the company s established sales procedures. Because of the costs involved in making changes, we ended up modifying our processes to fit the logic of the Oracle system, says Ron Partridge, Group VP of Global Sales and Marketing for Panduit. We could have adapted the system to fit our business, but it would have taken an inordinate amount of resources to get this done. Need to Ensure Rapid, Widespread Adoption Owing to the usability challenges of its customer relationship management

3 systems, the company s sales force failed to adopt either system in sufficient numbers. In fact, the company estimates that fully one-third of its sales personnel regularly worked outside of the system, increasing the need for double entry, complicating lead management, and limiting the effectiveness of sales reporting. Without consistent use of the technology, we could not execute our global sales processes as efficiently as we needed to, says Partridge. To empower its team to maximize productivity, ensure adherence to its own defined best practices and procedures, and enable clearer insight into performance, Panduit began its search for a new customer relationship management system. We were looking for a system that we could deploy quickly, that our salespeople would want to use, and that we could costeffectively tailor to our business model, says Partridge. Solution After evaluating the market for packaged customer relationship management systems, Panduit selected Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Company executives had worked closely with Microsoft industry experts throughout the process to discuss how the solution would meet Panduit s unique requirements. In addition to ease of use, the solution had to offer a combination of built-in integration capabilities to connect all of the parts of its sales value chain and the extensibility to meet changing business needs, says Al Bissmeyer, High-Tech Industry Development Manager at Microsoft. Up and Running in Two Months With help from Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Hitachi Consulting, Panduit completed its implementation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM and deployed the solution which included multilanguage support for English, Chinese, and Japanese to its entire sales force in two months. This accelerated schedule included tailoring screens to match the company s process flow and modifying lead management capabilities in the system to automate lead tracking according to specific business rules. Flexible, Easy-to-Use System Panduit has taken advantage of the flexibility of Microsoft Dynamics CRM to make changes to the composition and number of screens used to perform daily tasks. For example, the company now has the ability to dynamically add fields to accommodate multiple SIC codes for customers. Building on the support that the solution provides for optimizing business processes, Panduit worked with Hitachi Consulting to minimize the number of screens and clicks required to complete sales orders. Whereas staff previously navigated through five separate screens in the Oracle system to fulfill this process, they can now input all of the necessary information by using a single screen. Moreover, salespeople can now access functionality in Microsoft Dynamics CRM through Office Outlook on their laptops. As a result, they no longer have to switch between multiple systems and views to find the information they need. Automated Lead Routing The team from Hitachi Consulting also helped Panduit extend the solution to automatically route leads to sales teams based on a set of predefined rules, including geographic location and interest in a particular solution area. As soon as one of the company s marketing staff members submits a qualified lead to the database in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, that record is automatically linked in the system to the appropriate regional sales organization. An automated alert is then transmitted

4 It s hard to overstate the tremendous value to our business in seeing full ROI on our investment in such a short time frame. Ron Partridge, Group VP of Global Sales and Marketing, Panduit to the field sales manager to initiate followup activities. Except for a few small addins, where our team wrote some additional custom code, we mainly used the built-in tools and capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics CRM to create the global leadrouting piece of the solution, says Jon Petrucelli, who managed the Panduit implementation for Hitachi Consulting. Because of its familiarity with Microsoft technology, Panduit s IT team can easily adapt this feature to align with changes in the makeup of the company s regional sales organizations. Sales Portal Integration Panduit looks forward to taking advantage of Microsoft Office SharePoint Server to link data stored in Microsoft Dynamics CRM to sales and marketing collateral hosted on the company s intranet. This will help Panduit employees, distributors, systems integrators, and other participants in the company s sales value chain quickly find the most current and relevant documentation on its expansive array of solutions. Without leaving their inbox, our people will be able to link directly to solution requirements, product specifications, and the sales playbooks for each solution, says Partridge. This will not only save us time but also ensure that we re all adhering to the same strategy. In addition, Panduit can take advantage of Active Directory Rights Management Services in Office SharePoint Server to control the distribution of proprietary information across its sales network. This technology will help Panduit more effectively manage its intellectual property and maximize consistency in how its employees and partners communicate about the company s solutions. Benefits Through its investment in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Panduit has streamlined and improved the coordination of its sales processes, increased the productivity of its global sales force, and gained business agility by lowering its total cost of sale. Building on the success of a rapid implementation cycle, the company projects full payback on its investment in six months. Gained Better Business Control Through Full Adoption of Technology By implementing Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Panduit has been able to tighten standardization of its sales strategy, better manage the execution of this strategy, and improve visibility into performance at every level of its global sales organization. To reach any of these goals, adoption of the technology is absolutely critical, says Partridge. The ease of use of Microsoft Dynamics CRM has played a huge role in ensuring that all 650 of our sales team members worldwide use the system, which is something we never could accomplish with Salesforce.com or Oracle Sales Online. Increased Sales Force Productivity by 20 Percent Microsoft Dynamics CRM has helped Panduit s sales staff increase productivity by 20 percent. Taking advantage of the flexibility of the solution, Panduit was able to quickly introduce greater efficiency in several key processes, such as dramatically reducing the number of screens required to complete sales orders. Also, because Microsoft Dynamics CRM meshes with Office Outlook and works with frequently used productivity tools, including Microsoft Office Word, sales staff save more than an hour each day by not having to manually transfer data between applications. In total, the company estimates that each of its 650 sales associates saves up to seven hours a week through these new efficiencies, a time savings that can be applied to building and deepening customer relationships.

5 Reduced Cost of Sale by 3 Percent in Three Months By increasing the efficiency of its processes and boosting workforce productivity, Panduit has lowered its cost of sale by 3 percent in three months, driving higher profit margins and maximizing cash flow. As the company continues to streamline processes, including capitalizing on its new, global lead-routing capabilities, executives anticipate continued reductions in total cost of sale over the next several quarters. This expectation is bolstered by improved visibility into sales performance. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, we have the ability to measure and report on critical values such as the number of leads closed against a specific target, down to the individual salesperson so that we can really fine-tune our process and execution going forward, says Partridge. Achieved ROI in Six Months Executives project that, based on numerous factors including increased productivity, improved coordination of sales efforts to shorten sales cycles, and greater IT selfsufficiency Panduit will realize payback in six months. It s hard to overstate the tremendous value to our business in seeing full ROI on our investment in such a short time frame, says Partridge. And, we feel like we ve just scratched the surface in terms of all the new capabilities that we get through Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Greater Sales Consistency and Coordination Microsoft Dynamics CRM, together with Office SharePoint Server, provides the tools to empower all of the people within the company s extended sales value chain to share information quickly and securely and offer input into the sales process. As the company continues its progression toward a solution sales approach, this improved coordination among field sales staff, account executives, distributors, and other key business partners is critical to boosting efficiency and operational consistency to drive revenue growth.

6 For More Information For more information about Microsoft products and services, call the Microsoft Sales Information Center at (800) In Canada, call the Microsoft Canada Information Centre at (877) Customers in the United States and Canada who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can reach Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) services at (800) Outside the 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. To access information using the World Wide Web, go to: For more information about Panduit products and services, call (800) or visit the Web site at: For more information about Hitachi Consulting products and services, call (877) or visit the Web site at: Microsoft Dynamics Microsoft Dynamics is a line of integrated, adaptable business management solutions that enables you and your people to make business decisions with greater confidence. Microsoft Dynamics works like familiar Microsoft software such as Microsoft Office, which means less of a learning curve for your people, so they can get up and running quickly and focus on what s most important. And because it is from Microsoft, it easily works with the systems that your company already has implemented. By automating and streamlining financial, customer relationship, and supply chain processes, Microsoft Dynamics brings together people, processes, and technologies, increasing the productivity and effectiveness of your business, and helping you drive business success. For more information about Microsoft Dynamics, go to: Software and Services Microsoft Dynamics Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partners Hitachi Consulting This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published December 2009

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