At a Glance
This Renoir project’s primary objective was to set up a fit-for-purpose sales management control system (MCS) for a steel manufacturing client to:
- Sustainably improve sales of its lightweight window grade iron and steel structures
- Establish stronger leadership in the market in the Eastern region of India
- Develop robust dealer networks with a capable execution team.
Along an updated MCS, other key deliverables included improving sales force effectiveness through improved behaviours, systems and processes. Such systems covered data capture, monitoring and review mechanisms to create a strong foundation for informed decision-making.
The client is a subsidiary of a private steel company, one of the leading manufacturers of steel products based in India. Its products include thermo-mechanically treated (TMT) bars, mid steel (MS) round bars, flats, angles, beams, channels and other structural items, with manufacturing facilities located in East India.
Incorporated in the early 2000s, its facilities include a steel melting shop with five furnaces of different capacities, a continuous casting machine and a rolling mill. The company is growing rapidly and is looking to expand with further addition of capacity.
Renoir had previously worked with the client on an operational excellence project aimed at improving productivity and output – where the goal was to shift its organisational bottleneck towards the sales function. With the increased availability of inventory, management felt the need to revamp and expand its existing distribution network.
To better understand the scope for improvement and the changes required to create new opportunities, a 4-week in-depth analysis of the client’s current situation was undertaken by Renoir. The analysis identified the following potential opportunities:
- Improve the balance between the Sales Team and the Connect with Market Team.
- Increase the Sales Team’s awareness of targets and how to conduct effective performance reviews.
- Strengthen the Sales Team’s approach towards widening its dealer network to win new business.
- Develop better structured control and review mechanisms.
What We Did
To ensure that new practices for sales growth were sustainable, it was important to better define the opportunities with the wider Sales Team and jointly develop the solutions that would increase sales. A market mapping system was developed that provided a clear view of gaps in penetration both in terms of geographical areas where there was no penetration and areas where there was unfulfilled demand.
This resulted in the identification of geographies where additional supply could be made to match demand, shape new demand or manage existing demand. One common Sales Management Action Team (MAT) was set up and involved participants from all key functions on a part-time basis.
This team’s role was to ensure that the agreed changes were implemented in each participant’s teams and that the benefits were achieved. Meanwhile, a full-time task force consisting of the client’s team was set up and supported by Renoir consultants. The combined client-Renoir team’s responsibilities were to help the MAT in defining and implementing the required changes.
To ensure its objectives would be achieved, a Steering Committee consisting of the Chairman, Managing Director and Vice President of Sales and Marketing was constituted. The Committee was directly led by the Chairman and met every two weeks to review progress and remove any barriers to success.
A hands-on approach was adopted throughout the assignment. All organisational levels were involved in order to gain buy-in of the designed systems, which in turn assured the sustainability of the improvements.
Once defined and agreed on, implementation of sales management control system elements and processes included:
- Clearly defined KPIs and improved mechanisms for setting and monitoring them.
- Daily review meetings were installed with immediate effect to develop the practice of reviewing the production numbers daily. This not only enabled better control of the process but also improved coordination between the Sales and Plant Teams.
- Short interval controls, standard operating procedures and data capture mechanisms to track and manage daily sales.
- Streamlined customer processes to improve wallet share from existing primary customers, the addition of new primary customers, as well as identifying secondary customers
- Aligned sales planning and reviews through improved systems and processes.
- Systematic customer complaints logging, analysis and resolution
A detailed implementation plan was developed and began with training every member of the sales team. As well as classroom training, a significant amount of time was spent directly coaching whilst on the job. Senior team members developed a ‘train the trainer’ approach and were entrusted with the responsibility of training their subordinates or any newcomer to the team. This ensured that the results were sustainable over time.
A significant and consistent increase in Sales was achieved throughout the course of the assignment.
In addition to the measurable results, Renoir was able to develop continuous improvement skills and capabilities of the teams within scope such that the client is now able to develop further improvements without outside help. In short, the assignment fully met the objectives and expectations of the client, with the company better placed to meet the competitive challenges of the future.
“It was a great transition for us to move from an old traditional way of sales and marketing to a very organized structure, which helped us get quick results as well as helping us expand the potential of the very same team.”
Accelerate sales growth with improved systems, processes and leadership.