by Madhav Mohan

Greenply boosts field force productivity by deploying CRM on Mobile

Apr 26, 2016

Greenply industries implemented mobile CRM to increase the efficiency of its field force. The aim was to provide quick real time data to the back office.n

Greenply Industries (GIL) is India’s largest interior infrastructure company with a turnover of Rs. 1560 crore. The company’s revenues grew by 12.32% during the last fiscal.

Currently, it occupies the top position in the plywood and Medium-Density Fibreboard (MDF) market. Notably, the company has an almost 30 per cent share of the organized plywood market in India. Greenply markets the most wide-ranging collection of residential and commercial floor products like plywood and block boards, MDF and Wood floors.

Greenply industries may have a good grip over marketing, but the company faced challenges with respect to sales.

Real time data missing

The field force of the company was not able to provide real time data to back office in terms of how many leads they were able to convert into opportunities. “For example, an architect demanding 100 plyboards is considered to be a lead and becomes an opportunity when the field force buys the product or executes the order. Opportunities are actual numbers which the field force has enabled. The issue was that the field force was not able to meet the actual numbers,” says Vineet Bansal, Head IT, Greenply Industries.

Equipping the field force with laptops and CRM software was not an option as internet connectivity in semi-urban and rural areas was a concern. Coming to the nearest branch to input reports was also not viable. 

Bansal and his IT team thought of a way to address the problem. The solution was of course, to introduce an application that captured and provided real time data that would increase the productivity of the field force. But the connectivity bottleneck still had to be overcome.

Considering most members of the field force had smart phones with them,  Bansal was left with only one choice–rolling out a CRM app on mobile.

Before rolling out the application, Bansal and his team mates had to ensure that the application worked in an offline mode so that the user could input data in the absence of connectivity and later on it would automatically synchronize to the server, when connectivity was restored. This was necessary as rural and semi-urban areas were not fully equipped with 3G or 4G connection.

CRM comes to the rescue

“We are using native application which is user friendly and supports offline data inputs. When we open the application, it shows dashboard as the home screen and from the menu the field force can choose different options like leads, opportunities, accounts etc,” says Bansal. Moreover, after selecting menu option, a user can see a list of records, where he can create new records or edit existing records.

Bansal says that the project was called Disha and the the application MS CRM. “Its unique feature is that it is easily customizable as per our need and new requirements can be addressed with easily configurable forms which do not require programming,” he says.

However, during the implementation of the project, Green ply industries did face some hurdles. The biggest problem was change management. “To move users from their manual work to mobile was not an easy job, but we trained the workforce and gave them hands on training sessions,” explains Bansal.

Field force productivity shoots up

The phase one of the project has been rolled out in Delhi, Kolkata, and Bangalore. They started the project in the month of July last year and Phase 1 was rolled out on March 16 this year.

Stressing on the benefits of the project, Bansal says leads and opportunities are visible to users on the application. There is an option available, where the user can generate quotes from the system as the price list is visible to him. Also, users can check the history of quotes sent to the customer.

Bansal says that the productivity of the field force has increased by 20 percent after implementing the project.  A major benefit of using a mobile CRM is that it allows sales force to access real time data while meeting customers in the field.

At the same time, in case there is a complaint from the customers regarding a product, field force can register the problem by taking a photograph and send it to the factory through the application.

Moving forward, Bansal is planning to roll out a business intelligence application on the mobile, so that the field force can download sales reports on a daily basis.