Mobile Workforce Management Blog

Is technology a strategic advantage for field marketers?

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Have you heard of SMACIT technologies yet? Well, they’ve come a long way and are now becoming the norm in many industries, including Field Marketing. With that being the case, how do companies leverage the power of these technologies and turn them into strategic advantage? One word, process! Read More

This week at the SalesAtWork office we’ve been throwing around the question, “Does technology give a strategic advantage?”  And we pretty much came up with a resounding YES…and no! You see the answer, of course, is not so simple. We’ll have to delve into what it is means to adopt technology as part of a company’s operations and whether acquiring that technology provides an immediate advantage.  

One of the first new terms we come into contact with, when discussing tech and strategy, is SMACIT and it has nothing to do with hitting an annoying colleague. SMACIT stands for social, mobile, analytics and internet of things, personally we think it’s quite an ingenious acronym.

The Harvard Business Review article, Why Nordstrom’s Digital Strategy Works (and Yours Doesn’t), discusses the importance of SMACIT and how important your process/planning is in using these technologies. With the advent of Cloud Computing, many of these technologies are now readily accessible, which means it can be challenging to gain a competitive advantage.

The article goes onto further iterate that “Only a small percentage of companies will gain competitive advantage from SMACIT technologies. Those that do will focus less on the individual technologies and more on how they rally all those technologies, in unison, to fulfil a distinctive purpose.” We couldn’t agree more, we’ve been saying for a while now, it’s all about process.

As an example we look at The Sales Dept., an outsourced New Zealand FMCG Sales and Operations Service provider. They take a multi-disciplined and integrated approach to strategy, sales and operations management backed by a highly-effective national field sales and merchandising team.

When discussing moving away from spreadsheets to a Cloud based solution, in this case SalesAtWork, they had to re-visit their in-field processes and their support sales processes. The Sales Dept. had to take a step back and decide how technology would be overlaid into their operations to enable them to create a competitive advantage. 

They realized from the beginning that the technology wasn’t necessarily going to “do it all” for them.  When asked about what impact technology has had on their sales process, Chris Wong- Executive Director at The Sales Dept.

said, “The point of difference in not SalesAtWork but our unique service offering which is enabled by SalesAtWork.”

Again, when looking at SMACIT technologies one of the most important things to keep in mind is, for the most part, these technologies are no longer a point of difference. They are more likely to be enablers in a newer ecosystem of cloud-based technologies. 

In reality, it is more important to first look at your existing advantages and strategies, then to consider how technology can assist in taking you to the next level. The HBR article further iterates, “Develop a strategy for succeeding in a digital economy- a purpose that leverages your unique capabilities and respond to market opportunities.

Then grab every technology that takes you there.”    

How are you building your technology ecosystem? Are you currently using technology to truly enable your competitive points of difference? Stay tuned, in our next post we’ll show you how The Sales Dept. is harnessing the power of SMACIT technologies to enable competitive advantages within the field marketing sector.

SalesAtWork

SalesAtWork embodies all the necessary features required to deliver industry 'best sales practise', SalesAtWork sets the standard to allow different industries to consistently focus on, evolve and improve sales processes.

To find out more about SalesAtWork mobile sales force management and trade promotions management solution www.salesatwork.com

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SalesAtWork - Trade Spend Promotions Management | Sales Force ManagementSalesAtWork
Category: Trade Promotion Management SoftwareCompany about: SalesAtWork provides a cloud based application for Trade Promotions Management (TPM) and Sales Force Management. For an affordable monthly fee, SalesAtWork delivers advanced features in these areas without the need to employ time based consultants. Advanced data management Logical workflow and approval processes Target performance metrics Exception alerts and graphical analytics SalesAtWork manages the entire TPM cycle : Sales Budget, Sales Forcast, Promotions Plan, ROI Assessment, Prom ...
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