A CRM system tailored to fit specific needs

Toppi is a very traditional family business in the manufacturing industry and also a traditional expert sales organization. In addition to a wide range of standard products, they have significant custom-made products, which places additional demands on the software used to manage their sales pipeline. Therefore, the basic CRM module that came with Toppi’s ERP system became insufficient in just a few months, and Toppi contacted Lime Technologies.

When working methods were updated to the CRM era, the process was not quite straightforward because there were many various sources of information. It took effort to get the entire workflow and product portfolio modeled into the new system. However, now, four years after the introduction, Kai Suokko, Toppi’s sales director, states that going back to old times and working without a centralized source of information for the entire team would be very difficult. “A great tool. Information reaches the right person at the right time” he sums up.

Reinforcing positive practices with the help of a system

To achieve the best added value, the IT solution should reflect workflows as closely as possible and reinforce positive practices. It should not force users to change their processes and serve the system. Toppi described their entire sales and supply chain to us in detail, and we developed a workflow that fit their processes.

Over the past few years, it has become increasingly clear to Lime that implementation and the creation of internal workflows in a customer organization is probably the most important and vulnerable part of a project. If the use of a CRM-system is limited, the information covered by the system will not be fully trusted and the added value of the money invested in the system will be jeopardized. That is why Lime has acquired change management experts to develop the implementation project.

“A great tool. Information reaches the right person at the right time.”

Kai Suokko, Sales Director, Toppi

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Improving workflows with clarity

The information system has made Toppi’s employees’ tasks easier. CRM information is used to review the sales pipeline, special customer cases and, for example, to decide which material would be most suitable for the customer’s special needs. Information on both standard products and custom packages is well stored.

The workflow for custom orders is entirely its own challenge. The preparation of an order or an offer requires a lot of technical information, and in the past the problem was the processing of extensive product-specific pre-information forms. Now that’s all visible and information can be filtered in a CRM system, and it’s easy for a sales manager to see ongoing orders and offers.

Before the CRM era, it was sometimes possible for Toppi to end up making competing offers for its own offers. Toppi could receive an offer request for the same product from several subcontractors, and the salespeople did not know whether an offer had already been made for a different buyer for the same order. Now it can be seen immediately if an identical offer has already been calculated and a salesperson will not start recalculating an offer that has already been handled by a colleague.

Sales Director Kai says it is all about the objective of the salesperson’s work: “Even if the tools change, the basics remain. Do the right things. Search for leads, submit offers and follow up on them. Don’t do tasks that aren’t yours.” In these matters, automation has provided support for everyday work and the ability of sales management to monitor the situation and address issues.

Great processes result in happy customers

The majority of Toppi’s sales come from frequent customers. Attempts are made to meet these types of customers a certain number of times a year, but in the past, precise monitoring was impossible. Now, appointment data can be filtered and handled by the CRM system, so that appointments are made every three months. Customer segmentation allows employees to set different customer care models for different customer groups.

When it comes to appointments, salespeople feel more secure when they can look through the entire purchase history, activities and what has been previously agreed upon before they leave for the customer. It is especially nice that they don’t encounter surprises at the customer, such as unanswered complaints they didn’t know about.

As for the complaints, a special 8D format for complaints was made in Lime CRM. A working group of suitable experts will be assigned investigate the problem. The handling of complaints has been speeded up and the number of complaints has been reduced, as structured work has helped to address the issues and find out how problems can be avoided in the future.

Boosting usage rates by highlighting benefits

When Kai Suokko is asked how the usage rate for the CRM system has been taken care of at Toppi, he laughs and says: “At first the employees were asked to use it now, okay? When it didn’t work, the journey has been a bit like raising children. By blackmail, intimidation and corruption”. Next, Kai becomes a little more serious and talks about the procedures by which they have made sure that things are not left unwritten in the system. One example is that if a visit report can’t be found in Lime CRM, it cannot be billed.

Lime personnel work with their own Lime CRM in similar ways. If a sale is not recorded, it is not included in the income statement. Of course, managers at Toppi emphasize that the starting point is not to use or bully anyone, but to work together to ensure that data is usable for all parties involved.

Kai Suokko is now satisfied with the activities of his team. The benefits of the system have been communicated and understood, and because the CRM solution has been modified to support particular tasks, the usage rate is very high. Kai says that when you get to work in the morning, you usually open Lime CRM first and email second. Many salespeople make a note of a sales appointment even before they leave the customer.

Constantly developing the CRM-system

Toppi also recently started using a gaming add-on, Lime Engage. It is a platform on which it is possible to create various work community competitions to reinforce certain behaviors. Participants earn points for doing things managers want to promote. This could be the case, for example, with contacting customers who have not been consulted in a long time. However, creativity has been used at Toppi and leisure activities, such as birds and plants spotted outdoors, have also been recorded in Engage! Not everything has to do with work tasks; a variety of activities together improve the workplace mood.

At the time of writing this customer story, Toppi has just introduced Lime Marketing to handle customer communications from the preparation of mailings to the processing of webinar registrations. With the help of customer segmentation, product campaigns can be targeted towards the right target groups. In addition, Lime’s helpdesk solution is being tested, which automatically creates tickets from emails received from customer service. Next up is the expansion of Toppi’s ERP integration to make ERP product information directly selectable for offers in their CRM system.

Making the system your own

Lime wants organizations using the Lime CRM system to feel ownership of the product and feel that they can make it their own. That’s why we aim to educate enthusiastic users to be able to advise others and make changes to Lime or the interface. In addition to Kai Suokko, Juhani Levänen is an enthusiastic user at Toppi. This duo often makes small adjustments to Lime together and creates for example new filters for processing CRM data.

We are particularly pleased with Kai’s spontaneous feedback to our project and training consultants. Lime has been able to talk about technical development projects with Toppi’s employees and make great adjustments throughout the years.

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Toppi was founded in 1963 and is a company operating in the plastic manufacturing industry. Toppi manufactures plastic products for both companies and for consumer use.