At an industry conference, representatives from Ampacet Corporation’s IT team got talking with a Concurrency consultant about customer relationship management topics. From that initial spark, a multi-year partnership formed, in which Concurrency’s Dynamics 365 team assisted Ampacet with projects that:
- Provided a 360-degree view of the customer in Ampacet’s CRM system
- Integrated the firm’s CRM system with the ERP system
- Met the need for process and data variations throughout worldwide locations
Our work with Ampacet began with an in-depth roadmap project that brought together IT representatives, sales executives, and operational executives from the company’s lab division.
“We gathered our global business leaders for a week-long workshop with Concurrency experts,” said Maria del Pilar Maidana, Business Processes Analysis - Global Manager, Ampacet Corporation.
“Since it was global, we had all the four regions represented—and every region had something different. That was a very good workshop,” she said.
The lab division—which serves a key role in the sales process, by proving out solutions to customers’ specific needs—was one focus area in this initial project. Another key focus area was the sales department, which is critical for pricing determinations and maintaining customer relationships as well as ongoing customer support. These two areas bring together other main areas of the business such as customer service that make the customer experience whole.
During the roadmap project, we got everyone together in a room and mapped out in detail how they work together. We documented business processes, including differences across regions and countries. This approach gave us, as well as the Ampacet team, confidence in building a solution that would serve effectively and flexibly on a global basis.
Some of the specific processes we explored included:
- How sales representatives make and send requests to the lab or customer service
- What data the lab needs to process an incoming request
- What data customer service needs to process a pricing request
- What data needs to be documented to track customer success —and how
“The big effort was to bring all regions’ CRM use onto one unique system that met all requirements. In the initial workshop, we gathered all the requirements and discussed all the current systems and how they were used,” said Maria del Pilar Maidana.
At the conclusion of the in-depth, weeklong study of business processes, the Ampacet team established that the Dynamics platform was indeed the right solution to its needs.
The project therefore moved into its next phase of planning and execution of a rollout to North and South America regions. (Operations in the rest of the world came later.) In this work, we assessed their current CRM system use as well as other tools such as spreadsheets and other databases.
We planned and implemented Microsoft Dynamics (online) over the course of several months. Throughout this work, we worked together with the Ampacet team to ensure full integration with the firm’s ERP planning software, JD Edwards.
Specifically, we established the system so account data in JD Edwards automatically flows into Dynamics, including customer details, sales person, product manager, global manager, current sales profile, and more. In this way, we met a basic and critical need for increased customer visibility within the CRM system actively used by sales, the lab, and customer service. The result was a convenient and fully integrated approach that allowed all the divisions to work together smoothly and maintain complete visibility into business processes and customer details.
Generally speaking, this setup solves a problem of vital work going on—such as that performed by the lab—that had always been occurring outside the confines of the ERP system. Previously, because this work wasn’t contained with ERP, participants had to make do with Excel spreadsheets, email, and other means of business processing that weren’t ideal for productivity or visibility.
The solution, in contrast, brought everyone together—giving sales, the lab, and the customer service department the ability to work together in just one tool, all benefiting from the others’ perspectives and documentation.
Results and Next Steps
Following this successful rollout in North and South America, we then proceeded—again working closely with the Ampacet team—with a subsequent phase to bring Europe and Asia on to the new system.
This phase covered another several-month period and included specific attention to and accommodation of variations in business processes across the regions.
“The global system means anyone in the company can see a particular customer,” said Maria del Pilar Maidana. “We now have data in a unique, centralized location where anyone who needs that information can access it. Previously, the data was in various spreadsheets and emailed reports and was difficult to retrieve.”
We’ve continued our partnership with Ampacet with ongoing support of the established system as well as the addition of new features and functions over time.
For example, we created rollup reporting features that allow users to view a customer’s current product consumption and link that to specific opportunities and tech requests —giving sales a helpful customer-by-customer tool to identify opportunities for business growth as well as identify the ROI for services done within the lab compared to revenue coming into Ampacet. In another project, we brought in the specific pricing book along with their Sales Orders for each client so Sales can have a better view into each client’s overall book of business.
In other ongoing work with Ampacet’s IT team, we’ve participated in regional sales meetings to train users on the Dynamics platform.