With the ever expanding footprint of Exact Event Manager around the world, we are fast gaining insight into some of the effective and meaningful uses of the high-value business solution. I have recently started contacting customers that I know and asking them for some examples of how they have deployed Exact Event Manager. This is a fascinating exercise and I thought it is relevant to share some of these experiences with the larger community through this Product Blog. I will regularly post blogs on some of the real-life uses of Exact Event Manager, in the hope that ideas being to flow.
So, yesterday, Wednesday March 28, I went to spend some time with a customer not too far from my office. This is a customer that I have known for a long time but have never visited their new Head office digs here in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. Company ABC is a Canadian company with many divisions and locations across the country, classified in the food processing industry. They use a number of Exact’s solutions to assist in driving their business forward and have done so since 1998. Exact Event Manager, along with Exact Synergy Enterprise, are their newest additions to their solution set from Exact.
Their plan was to implement Exact Synergy Enterprise to solve some challenges they faced with Quality Assurance and related documentation (Certificates of Analysis etc). This would have been accomplished with Exact Synergy Enterprsie and Exact Event Manager. The plans and ideas were well mapped out and timelines defined. Then reality poked its ugly head up like a gopher on a newly dressed golf green, right when the final goal was in line. In this case, the gopher was a well publicized strike by Canada Post employees. Hmm, you might say. How is it possible that in todays’ technology driven world would a postal strike affect business? Especially in a country such as Canada eh!! Well, it does have a huge impact, both for folk at home and for businesses.
On the 3rd June, 2011, a rolling strike was initiated across the country by the members of the Canada Post delivery services. From that point on, you had more chance of seeing the Toronto Maple Leafs making the play off’s than receiving a bill in the mail!! And therein lies the rub, as well as the opportunity! As we all know, these days in business (and at home as well!) Cash is King! However, without customers receiving invoices for products and services, no one is going to get paid. The old adage of “Your cheque is in the mail”, was not one that was going to work this time!!
So, Company ABC responded to this challenge laid down by reality and looked into their box of tricks and solutions provided by Exact, seeking ways to mitigate this potentially crippling business interruption. Low and behold, they came across Exact Event Manager!! They henceforth, postponed their other projects and focused on looking for a solution that lay within Exact Event Manager. “What if we could email all our invoices to customers?” This was the high level solution that presented itself. However, remembering to select the correct email address at the time an invoice was processed, save the invoice to disk in a .pdf format, and then attach it to the email was open to mistakes. Sending an invoice to the wrong person or customer is not necessarily a business practice supported by any college business program. Well, “what if we could have this done automatically after we have posted a whole bunch of invoices and spooled the documents to disk?” This line of questioning prompted some thought of previsously hearing in the corridors somewhere at an Exact Engage Conference that Exact Event Manager is the “Automatically” part of the solution.
So, the team at ABC Company, set about creating a single event within Exact Event Manager that would automatically send out customer invoices, a couple of times a day, taking all the batch created invoices and emailing them as attachments to the correct contacts at the correct customer. Simple, efficient and problem solved! Move forward almost a year since the strike, and all their customers still get their invoices eletronically via email, their postage costs have gone down significantly, cash flow from sales operations remains positive and the Toronto Maple Leafs still have not made the play off’s!!!!!
The deployment of Exact Event Manager within Company ABC to solve this business challenge of sending invoices automatically may seem simple and innocuous. Yes, Exact Event Manager was designed with way more horse power than simply automating a manual operation of sending invoices via email. However, the issue at hand here is that a simple, but vital business challenge was solved very quickly with some imagination and Exact Event Manager. At the same time, there are real cost savings with the reduction in postage costs, which is not trivial when you send out thousands of invoices a month! What does a single Event cost with Exact Event Manager? It is somewhere around $300 per event when you break it down. Add some time to create the event and test it out, and you are at around say $600 per event. (For complete and formal pricing, please contact your representative. These values are merely illustrative in nature) Well, it looks like this specific business challenge saved a whole lot more, not only preserved cash flow, than $600 (the price of a ticket to watch the Maple Leafs by the way!). I call that a good return on investment and an even better time to value.
There are many, many such cases where Exact Event Manager will drive significant value within your business. Some cases you haven’t even thought of yet. However, I am sure the time will come when the need arises to solve a last minute, reality based business issue and you may well find Exact Event Manager sitting in the corner waiting to help you to a long lasting resolution. More ideas and uses to come….have a great weekend!