Improved Sales Tool for Energy Suppliers

Feature Article | August 13, 2008 by admin

Intense competition, reduced customer loyalty, and official measures such as the planned regulation of incentives in Germany mean that energy suppliers are facing some tough challenges, particularly when it comes to customer management and sales. Help is at hand in the form of crm light – an efficient sales tool.

Win new customers and manage existing ones. Energy suppliers can do both with the Web-based SAP Customer Relationship Management (SAP CRM) solution, which consolidates all sales-related information and control parameters. From day-to-day business, through project monitoring, to analytical sales controlling, the role-based functions in SAP CRM cover all sales activities.

Fast, fixed-price implementation

The cronos group is a certified SAP consulting partner for the fields of utilities and data warehouse. The company implements solutions such as SAP for Utilities, SAP Business Intelligence, and SAP CRM for utility, waste, and public service organizations.

crm consulting AG developed the crm light template in order to enable the rapid implementation of SAP CRM at public utility companies for a fixed price. “The template provides preconfigured and packaged functions and processes for both key account and industrial sales. This means that we can implement SAP CRM in 250 person-days – that’s an average of six months,” says Tristan Becker, CEO of crm consulting AG. A key benefit of the solution, as Becker points out, is that it is modification-free and future-proof.

In recent years, crm light has developed into a standard tool for users of SAP CRM in the utilities industry. The solution is currently in use at STAWAG Aachen AG, Mainova AG Frankfurt, and RheinEnergie AG, among others. The public utility of the city of Duisburg is currently implementing the template for the first time based on SAP CRM 2007 and will thus benefit from enhanced functions and improved ergonomics.

Transparent contract management

Standard templates for activity management in crm light 2007 make it possible to enter employee activities even more quickly than before. The templates are automatically filled with data on customers, contracts, and connection objects, which the employee can access when logging his or her activities.

The contract management function has also been completely reworked. All contract information that is relevant to sales is now clearly arranged and transparently displayed on a single screen. Key account managers receive daily notifications about customer status, and can therefore see which contracts are about to expire and where other intervention is required. This in turn means that the sales department can take timely and appropriate action.

Thanks to an improved contract replication function, the key account manager can transfer quotation and contract data recorded in CRM direct to the SAP for Utilities industry solution at the touch of a button. “This does away with annoying and cumbersome paper interfaces and means that our customers can reduce their error rates by up to 45 percent,” says Becker.

Simple and market-driven calculations

In crm light, energy suppliers can gain access to the entire contract history of their customers, along with all the underlying calculations. By accessing the “revision offer” function, they can check the current contribution margin and adapt existing contracts to specific market situations.

An Excel interface transfers the quotation master data to Excel, calculates it, and returns it to crm light so that an offer can be created. Thanks to the AnKafix connector, which completely integrates SAP CRM with the eXcim calculation tool, the employee does not have to exit the SAP user interface during the calculation process.

Clear customer segmentation

The “energy consultant offers” function in crm light allows users to split an offer into separate contracts and to assign the points of delivery and the contract partner. This function also makes it possible for users to see which contracts exist with which energy consultants and to check on the current status of business partner relationships.

Marketing campaigns designed specifically for the utility industry enable customer win-back activities, gas aggregation measures, and fully automated price adjustment letters. It is also possible to analyze the success of all such campaigns. The feedback received can be recorded precisely, because all letters sent to business partners are stored in CRM.

crm light 2007 can be integrated with the MS Office products Word, Excel, and Outlook, and the template comes equipped for standardized online integration with SAP ERP.

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