Racal Antennas Limited has purchased SmartVision CRM, powered by Microsoft CRM, for quotation management and forecasting. The system will generate all sales quotations, consolidate the customer and contact information and provide more consistent quotations together with timely and accurate sales forecasting. By implementing SmartVision CRM each sales person will become more productive and will offer better customer service as information is shared and visible to all related staff.
Racal Antennas is one of the latest companies to sign up for SmartVision CRM from K3 Business Technology Group Plc (K3). Racal Antennas based at Southampton and part of the Chelton group of companies, manufactures and distributes antennas for the defence and telecommunications industry. The two sides of the business are evenly balanced. On the defence side, Racal sells its products globally and has a wide customer base including the major industry defence organisations and MoDs in numerous countries. On the telecommunications side, Racal is very active in the UK with cellular network providers, but are also seeing an expanding customer base in Europe, AsiaPac & the Middle East. Racals route to market is either a direct route to the end user or via in-country distributors and agents.
With regard to systems, Racal currently operates the Omnis manufacturing software together with the Sigma accounting suite, both from K3, and was looking for a system to produce sales quotations, track sales opportunities and provide real time forecasting. While Racal holds some strategic stocks, they are a predominantly a Make-to-Order company. The system will provide better visibility of the sales pipeline, allowing Racal to improve the production planning process and will ease pressure on manufacturing and supplier lead-times.
Derek McClelland, Racal Antennas' Managing Director, was involved in the system selection from the outset. He said: Our original system provided some fairly accurate sales forecasts but it was not very user friendly. Over the years our sales people drifted off the system and started to generate customer quotations using Microsoft Office because it was quicker and easier to do. Whilst the company records each quotation centrally, weve lost the overall visibility of the sales pipeline by doing so.
The initial requirement of the SmartVision implementation was to import the customer and contact information which is held in Omnis and also on peoples laptops. In addition, saleable products will be exported from Omnis and held in CRM, to be used to form the basis of the sales quotation. When quotes are generated on the SmartVision CRM system, Racal will have complete visibility of the current status of each quotation. From this position, our month end forecasts can be automatically generated by SmartVision CRM and will speed up the forecasting considerably said Derek McClelland. Also because many of our customers are overseas our sales people spend quite long periods travelling. It is not unusual to receive a call from a customer raising a query or wanting to place an order whilst the sales person is out. By having all of the quotation details easily accessible, with any accompanying notes, means that any one of us will be able deal with the query effectively.
The SmartVision CRM installation will be deployed on a dedicated CRM server accessed by both web browser and Microsoft Outlook.