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Showing posts from March, 2011

Mechanizing large sales networks

These days, there is a lot of discussion around the benefits that could software has on Small/Medium Enterprises (SMEs); and it does! But today, I’d like to focus on another area that SaaS could have great impact on: the case of large sales networks.

First of all, let me define what I am focusing on: A large sales network is a distributed network that sells a specific range of products and/or services in a large geographical scale and/or from a large number of outlets (outlet being a dealership, a franchisee etc.). Usually, this network is operated by a “big” enterprise (not an SME), such as an exclusive importer in a country or the franchisor etc. Up until today – because of the fact that the network operator is a large enterprise – it is more than likely that software systems have been deployed by this entity to mechanize this or the other network operation. Some typical functions that the Operator would like to streamline are incoming sales orders from the network, visibility of sto…

Automation of sales process in SaaS (part 2)

Automation of the on-boarding of new users on a SaaS platform is quite important and new. This is the kind of problem that does not exist in the traditional on-premise delivery model. So, it drives the SaaS vendor to “think differently” – and accumulate some costs in the process (!).

It’s not just about “on-boarding”. If we discussed this issue more widely, we would talk about automation of the entire sales process. And while we are at it, we could also expand the discussion on the automation of the after-sales process, too (customer support, in this case).

Let’s see some more challenges:

Since there is no license sold but there is obviously a SLA, how can this be documented? In the traditional on-premise, license-based model, the buyer signs a contract that they have actually purchased and own this or that piece of software. In the world of SaaS, the buyer does not own anything… Well, that’s not true! They own, at least, their data, which are inputted on the remote, hosted SaaS applicat…