Case Study – Portalis
Improve customer service and the sales process
Portalis was founded in and is currently domiciled in Salt Lake City, Utah
NATURE OF THE BUSINESS
Improving the decision-making process of control room operators is the prime objective of the Portalis business plan. Operators and engineers in all types of command and control centers are able to “simultaneously manage and monitor” multiple, disparate computer systems using the pro-xi® Workstation Integrator. Using this unique, exclusive, and revolutionary technology, operators are able to significantly improve decision-making, reduce operating costs, and increase overall control room efficiency. The owners and finance staff appreciate the addition to their ROI.
GROWING THE BUSINESS
On launching the enterprise, the business model shows growth through channel management, OEM partnerships, and superb customer service. The level of service Portalis provides is akin to the unique and unprecedented nature of the technology itself. Understanding clearly the customer issues and then presenting the solution to those specific problems is always the most effective method of sales.
FUTURE OF THE ENTERPRISE
Introducing a new technology into the marketplace is always challenging and exciting at the same time. Education about the unique nature and implications of this product is a major and dominant part of the sales process. In the case of the pro-xi Workstation Integrator, this is a unique technology, which has no equal or competitor in terms of the revolutionary functions, benefits, and capabilities that control room operators can now enjoy. The number and type of installations is nearly unending, as every control room, command and control center, AV operation, mobile broadcast facility, data center, and industrial processing system will eventual deploy this technology. Savvy engineers and finance staff all over the world and in many industries readily understand the reduction in operations budgets and improvement in control room efficiency they receive from the product. The future is very promising.
CHALLENGES AND BUSINESS PROBLEMS AIDED BY THE BUSINESSMAN SOFTWARE
A “start up” company with a “new, unique, and revolutionary” technology presents a different challenge to that of a large, multi-national corporation with thousands of existing customers. As such, Portalis personnel have had to create, identify, and understand:
- Business strategies, models, and processes
- Sales process
- Customer profiles
- Market potential
- Specific customer contacts
- Channel partners
- Sales demo process
- Customer data capture process
- Service process, including communications with the customer
- Vendor relationships and management processes
- Ability to grow in all aspects of managing the company
Basically, like many start ups, we had to create everything from the ground up. This is both exciting and daunting at the same time.
With the deliberate objective of becoming a world-class, customer service culture, many of our strategies, processes, and mandates may have required either one or more pieces of software. We carefully and deliberately sought a single, business enterprise software that would manage all aspects of the company, with the emphasis on the customer relationships. We wanted to avoid multiple software applications requiring multiple entries of the same data and trying to manage several, disparate databases.
At the end of the day, the following benefits were critical for us:
- capturing customer data, communications, and commitments
- instantly accessing customer information
- managing the sales process
- creating an institutional memory of the customer history
- allowing everyone to know everything about the customer
- connecting channel partners with various relationships and connections
- paying different sets of commissions for different levels of participation
- displaying relationships of customers to channel partners to internal sales people
In addition, we wanted a software solution that would be customizable to the way we wanted to conduct business, grow easily as our company grew, and not force us to do business around the software.
Giving customer data access to sales, engineering, tech support, admin, and finance was crucial to our approach. Remembering every customer commitment, communicating to the customer from every company division, and losing no customer information was certainly part of that approach. If a sales person decided to leave the company, we wanted to replace that sales person and immediately have access to all customer communications, sales, and promises instantly. We wanted nothing to fall through the cracks. As a start up we couldn’t afford any mistakes when dealing with customers.
As part of this process, we looked at the popular CRM apps available, and found some terrific companies. But, we wanted one application to manage the sales process, capture customer data, monitor POs, provide quotes, keep track of inventory, help with vendor relationships, allow remote access, be assessable by the Mac OS, Linux, and other operating systems, allow engineers and sales people alike to solve customer problems and communicate internally.
After evaluating many applications we quickly recognized that the BusinessMan product appeared to be exactly what we wanted. After multiple conversations and training sessions with the BusinessMan personnel and technicians, we felt the robust quality of the product was matched by a professional and sensitive group of professionals. The CompuTech group was comprised of savvy technicians, astute business people, and customer-service oriented individuals. Even their typical British humor and down to earth philosophy was appealing.
So far the product has provided and met all our needs. As we grow and our needs increase or evolve, we fully anticipate the BusinessMan app to grow and evolve with us.
The “out of the box” product seemed far ahead of similar products, and the ability of CompuTech programmers to capture our needs and customize the software was excellent. They understood our needs and were easily able to translate that understanding into customized programming of the software. As a new, young, Mac-based, high-tech, customer focused enterprise, we appreciated the quality and focused programming of this lively bunch of Brits.