NetTel Partners sees 200% increase in productivity after it leaves Oracle and adapts the Salesforce Sales Cloud for enterprise resource planning
Founded by Dan Ceravolo and Pete Magliocco, NetTel Partners’ distinction is to offer a higher level of accountability and results for its technology clients who are seeking external lead generation to support their sales teams. NetTel’s favorite tool to separate itself is the Sales Cloud, which was configured by OUT OF THE BOX Consulting (OOTB-C) to also provide enterprise resource planning. By engaging OOTB-C to swap its existing Oracle On Demand system for the Sales Cloud, NetTel increased productivity by 200 percent in a 4-month span. The custom implementation made it possible for NetTel to grow the company by 30 percent without adding management resources.
Two years after Dan Ceravolo and Pete Magliocco founded NetTel Partners in 2008, they chose Oracle On Demand (OOD) as their CRM. But even before the seven-month implementation was complete they began to regret their decision.
“The implementation took much longer than it should have, and all that we got was really basic functionality,”
Ceravolo recalled. “There were multiple times when our implementation partner said it was finished, and
there were still lots of pieces that didn’t work.”
Sales Cloud implementation by OUT OF THE BOX Consulting:
OUT OF THE BOX Consulting did a phenomenal job of providing us a Salesforce solution that takes us to the next level.
The biggest problem was that OOD didn’t suit NetTel’s business. As a lead generation firm specializing in technology and telecom clients, NetTel wanted a system that would handle both their own business development efforts and the campaigns they ran on behalf of clients like Avaya, IBM and Hitachi. Basically they needed an ERP and CRM in one application. But OOD didn’t support the requisite framework for user privileges and access levels.
“We knew about four months in that we had made the wrong decision,” Magliocco said. “But it was too late, we had signed an annual contract.” Attempts to customize OOD to make it more useful quickly became prohibitively expensive. For example, anything but the most basic changes to a report or workflow cost $500 to $1,000. Then, out of the blue, NetTel got an email from Oracle warning the company that it was over its data allotment. NetTel was faced with the choice of paying thousands of dollars more a month or shutting down parts of its CRM.
“The way Oracle inherently managed and duplicated data really hurt us,” Magliocco said. “We only had 500,000 records in the system; however, it turned out that what mattered was the way the records were counted by Oracle against the allotment.” NetTel was getting penalized for the leads it created on behalf of its clients–the very bread and butter of its business.
SOLUTION & RESULTS
In the summer of 2012, Ceravolo and Magliocco made a risky decision: They decided to move to the Salesforce Sales Cloud, even though the cost of the implementation and the per license fees were much more expensive than OOD, and NetTel itself was not yet profitable. “It was a scary jump for us,” Magliocco recalled.
The decision quickly paid off, as the new Sales Cloud CRM exceeded NetTel’s expectations. “Salesforce had ten times the automation and functionality of Oracle,” Magliocco said. As a result, sales productivity soared 200 percent. “The overall ROI of Salesforce justifies the switching costs over and over again,” Magliocco said. “I’m paying 60 percent more for my Salesforce licenses, but I am three times as happy.”
NetTel chose OUT OF THE BOX Consulting to rollout the Sales Cloud based on the firm’s track record for successful Salesforce implementations, as well as its reputation for unwavering customer support.
“From the early planning stages to customization, development and implementation, OUT OF THE BOX worked extremely hard to fully understand our business model and design a plan to accomplish all the goals set forth in the project,” Ceravolo said.
OUT OF THE BOX Consulting (OOTB-C) started the project by gathering requirements and information about NetTel’s existing architecture and then devised a clearly defined model for security and sharing that segregated the company’s own business development activities from the lead-generation campaigns it ran for its clients. The model also allowed for certain crossover relationships that provided company management with an end-to-end view of how a particular business development activity led to a completed client project and, ultimately, how the activity contributed to NetTel’s revenues.
From the initial rollout to pulling day-to-day reports, the experience with Salesforce and OOTB-C differed from the Oracle implementation in almost every way. NetTel budgeted four months for the rollout, but OOTB-C finished in just three and a half months. The new system not only worked extremely well, but its speed also left Oracle in the dust.
“Salesforce was three times as fast,” Magliocco said. “For example, if I had to create an opportunity and go through 20 steps in Oracle, I could do that three times faster in Salesforce. You cannot imagine the happiness and efficiency that was created, simply because Salesforce is a SAAS solution that is designed to work over the web and Oracle is not.” Magliocco estimated account executives are saving one to two hours a day just by using the Sales Cloud.
Using Force.com, OOTB-C built an automated feedback mechanism that begins collecting feedback two hours after a meeting has been scheduled between a client and a prospect. Such feedback, which is crucial to NetTel’s billing process, used to be collected manually. Automating the process freed up a full-time employee, and in doing so generated an immediate ROI of 15x. Ceravolo said the new automated approach also makes it possible to close out monthly accounts 25 percent faster.
Chatter proved to be another bonus. NetTel’s sales team, which has grown to more than two dozen account executives, loves the ability Chatter gives them to communicate over social media. While most chats are business focused, the occasional playful update helps maintain a spirit of camaraderie and brings the team together. Meanwhile, increased communication means less need for management. “Chatter definitely allows us to be more lean from a campaign management perspective,” Ceravolo said.
Within five months of switching to Salesforce, NetTel Partners expanded 30 percent and became profitable. Ceravolo said Salesforce is one of the top reasons that the company is doing so well. The Sales Cloud lets employees get more done without needing additional management. As Magliocco puts it: “Salesforce makes the management team better and more efficient. We can automate processes, collect more data and give ourselves and our reps the tools we need to be successful.”
In contrast to other developers who typically deliver no more than the client’s original requirements, OUT OF THE BOX Consulting goes over and beyond to make sure the scope matches what the end-users’ needs are.
Dan Ceravolo, Partner
OUT OF THE BOX Consulting | ootb-c.com | email@example.com | t. (415) 359-7062