Business Automation And Management Helps Construction Company Improve Efficiency

Inventory management, quote management and document management through Salesforce increased a furnishing and construction company's performance by 30%

About Client

The client was a multi-million dollar furnishing and construction company with a prominent market share in USA and UK in furnishing products and services industry. The company manufactured a large range of indoor and outdoor furnishing products, provided consultancy services on the best utilization of these products, and provided services related to installation of these products. The company has a large number of clients and closes a large number of high end deals per year. This generates a lot of paperwork and at the same time makes it difficult to manage the whole workflow ranging from buying to installation. This was especially difficult for sales and finance agents who had to create multiple quotes, proposals, and invoices, all in document based format. The client needed a solution that can help their sales reps fast track their process. The client were already using a Microsoft Dynamics NAV solution for inventory management so they needed added capabilities in their new solution to interact intelligently and in real time with MS Dynamics NAV system. Based on their requirements of lead, inventory and workflow tracking solution we proposed to them adopt a Salesforce based solution.

How We Did It

Microsoft Dynamics NAV integration

Challenge: How to fetch product information to Salesforce Solution

The client had a lot of different products belonging to lot of different categories. The client was using Microsoft Dynamics NAV for storing this product information and at the same time track their inventory. Since their agents were well versed with the system they were not keen to migrate the inventory and product management system to a new solution. They needed their new solution to have capability to access smartly the NAV system.

Solution: Integrating Salesforce with Microsoft Dynamics NAV via restful APIs

The main challenge in importing product data to Salesforce was fetching data from a third party solution Microsoft Dynamics NAV. To achieve this we integrated Salesforce and MS Dynamics NAV via restful APIs. The integration was achieved seamlessly and allowed two way data transfer between the two systems. The integration was flexible enough to allow different types of synchronization functionalities such as real time, batch wise, and via button click. Any order placed via salesforce system was reflected in the NAV system accordingly. Since the company dealt with multiple different products, the Salesforce solution had capabilities to create line item orders comprising of multiple different products. Then each order placed was reflected in the NAV database along with necessary changes in inventory.

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Egnyte Integration

Challenge: How to fetch and store documents from Egnyte

The client was using Egnyte as their primary document management system. Every quote created, order placed, every invoice created and sent, data of every product line item, everything, was saved in multiple document formats in Egnyte cloud document store. The new solution should have the capability to fetch and upload these documents from Egnyte.

Solution: Seamless Integration of Salesforce with Egnyte

We integrated Egnyte with Salesforce via Restful API. The integration was two way and allowed the users to both fetch and deposit documents via salesforce solution itself. The integration made it possible to attach corresponding documents with each quote, where documents are stored in Egnyte document management system. The two way integration meant that for every quote that was created for a lead in salesforce, created a separate folder in Egnyte with necessary metadata, and every quote and final order created went into that separate folder. The integration also allowed us to include a special Egnyte Tab in Salesforce that gave a folder explorer kind of feature to interact with Egnyte documents from Salesforce itself.

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Quote Management In Salesforce

Challenge: How to manage all quotes related to a lead

Each lead that is being pursued resulted in creation of multiple quotes and in many times multiple orders. The client wanted the new solution to help simplify the workflow, automate it, and make tracking or orders and quotes easy. They also want each order and quote in document format and to be automatically updated to Egnyte.

Solution: Intelligent Quote management in Salesforce

We implemented a custom Quote management system in the client’s Salesforce solution. We automated the process of quote generation and provided UI features to allow agents to select and include products in a quote from Salesforce itself. The product information is fetched from the Microsoft Dynamics Nav system. Each quote generated also created a PDF version of the quote that is saved to the Egnyte content management system. Egnyte integration also allowed us to include a small Egnyte window at the bottom of each Lead page layout. This window box displayed all the documents associated with the lead and saved in the Egnyte CMS, including orders, quotes, and other associated documents.

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IBM Server Integration

Challenge: How to bring shipment and order details from external server

Each order created generated a trail of data related to shipment, order dispatching, delivery and in some cases even product installation. This data is saved on a separate server that also caters to the client’s other web services. The client now want this data to be made available to Salesforce, Nav, and Egnyte.

Solution: Two way realtime integration with IBM server based web service

The obvious solution was to integrate the third party service with Salesforce, Nav, and Egnyte, however that approach was not easily possible as the order dispatching web service was not equipped with integration APIs. The third party web service was hosted on IBM server services and we also needed a way to automatically and securely access the server environment. To solve this we modified their web service and added integration modules to the system. Once the data query system and APIs were in place we were able to integrate the IBM server based web service with Salesforce and with Egnyte directly. Every lead that converts into order allowed the agent to generate an order dispatch request in the web service from Salesforce itself and every action taken on the order in the web service was reflected back in the Salesforce database. Data consistency was an issue so we implemented strict time stamping and data commit protocols in our system.

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Notifications and Log

Challenge: Keeping track of everything and a notification system

With so many different integrations and a complex business process workflow, the client wanted a system that tracks and keep records of everything. They also wanted to make human system communication easy and wanted a robust notification system so that users don’t lose out on any missed development.

Solution: A robust multi-channel notification system and a log system

We designed our system in such a way that can keep logs of every important update. Every critical user action, every important data commit, every action on an order, and every action on a lead was maintained on carefully planned log system built in Salesforce. The logs were configurable and the client could decided what they wanted to track and what not. For notifications we created a multi channel notification system based on Salesforce that provided on-system notifications as well as email notifications.

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Lead Conversion Rate Increased By 50%

Workflow automation reduced the average time taken for lead conversion by more than 50%

Order Delivery Time Reduced by 30%

Order tracking and inventory management reduced overall order dispatch, delivery, and installation time by 30%

Monthly Revenue Increased by 20-30%

Salesforce automation and workflow management made business process more efficient leading to ~30% increase in monthly revenue

Inventory Shrinkage Losses Decreased by 80%

Robust inventory management reduced inventory losses and shrinkage by 80%


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