Every day we grow more dependent on technology to do our jobs, and for most of us, technical problems can cost us time and money. But for first responders on the front line, technical glitches are literally the difference between life and death, and waiting for radio devices to respond to network failure is not an acceptable strategy for finding the limits of its capacity.
“The Genesis Group software enhances two-way radio systems. Think of us as the dashboard to a radio system which shows live information such as busy radio frequencies, creates forensic reports, or sends critical alerts,” said Mandy Jentes, the Maintenance & Total Support Administrator at The Genesis Group.
When terrorists struck the Boston Marathon in 2013, tremendous resources were mobilized to treat the injured, respond to further threats, and hunt for the perpetrators. Technically, this placed an incredible demand on radio networks, and the work of The Genesis Group before and during the event ensured critical lines of communication remained open.
“Without adequate resources allocated to radio users, operators can’t communicate with each other in scenarios like natural disasters or terrorist attacks where every first responder on the ground needs to be able to communicate via their radio. Our products can predict potential issues like this in order for our customers be better prepared. So in an indirect way, our software really does save lives,” explained Mandy.
Ironically though, for all their technical prowess at helping their clients run reliable communication operations, the way The Genesis Group was running their own operations was slow, congested, outdated and failing their business.
Still Operating on Physical Files
Up until mid-2016, the Genesis Group was running their operations with two primary systems - a custom-built CRM system and a complex physical filing system. "We were leaders in the software industry but running our own operations on paper - literally walking around with physical files and photocopies of purchase orders! It was a mess. Tracking details lacked efficiency, working remotely lacked accuracy, and both lacked easy accessibility,” said Mandy.
While the freedom and flexibility of customizing their own CRM system seemed good in theory - and possible for a team with so many technical experts - the reality for the business was a nightmare. "We were monopolizing our developers’ time on something that didn’t make us money, so instead of writing software that generated income, we had them fixing administrative challenges," explains Mandy. Additionally, while designing software that could predict chaos for mission-critical businesses in real-time comes naturally for their developers, building something that could support and streamline The Genesis Group’s operations was not their forte. As Mandy explains, "our software products have developers thinking on a very different wavelength than what a CRM solution requires, so as you can imagine, it wasn’t the best path to success.”
“We had no way of documenting communication between an employee and a customer when they submitted an issue. We’d literally print out important emails and store them in their physical file. That is a lot of paper to sort through and very time-consuming. We were in the dark ages,” Mandy said. Despite the importance of being face to face with their clients, a lot of work was done remotely, yet their systems weren't cloud-based; when people in the field needed a document, they had to call the head office and ask for a copy to be sent to them. “So I’d have to locate the right documents in our filing cabinet, take them over to the copier, scan it, and email a PDF version to someone in the field,” said Mandy.
“We desperately needed a platform like Accelo that could automatically record tickets, track their progress, and give us centralized visibility - especially if we wanted to expand our technical team Internationally. We added a London tech support office and it was not possible until Accelo was implemented” she added.
Streamlining Operations and Unlocking Value
Since making the switch to Accelo, The Genesis Group has ultimate visibility into all external and internal communication. “This means I’m no longer a personal assistant to people working remotely and that's a huge time saver for me,” said Mandy.
She added that “customer care skyrocketed with the increased visibility Accelo offered us. By using automatic Triggers, our sales reps get email alerts when tickets are opened for their clients. This allows our sales team to proactively check in with their clients and proactively pursue new opportunities based on technical needs in the ticket. It puts us on top of our game and positions us to function proactively versus reactionary,” said Mandy. “When our sales and support teams work in tight harmony, customer service improves. When customer service improves, our overall sales increase.”
In fact, overall productivity at The Genesis Group has increased by 25% as a result of moving to Accelo - that’s more than a day a week they’re getting back, time they can spend being productive serving clients and generating revenue. Mandy believes that many of the efficiencies gained at The Genesis Group can be attributed to Accelo’s automatic time tracking feature, which they use primarily to run internal forensic reporting to see where the most time is spent on customer issues.
“We can track the life of a ticket. So for example, how long has it remained unopened? Or how long has it taken to go from unassigned, to assigned, to closed? More importantly, how long was it “waiting on client”, a custom created status?” Consequently, we’re able to run more accurate reports, which in turn makes us more profitable, because we can see exactly where we are losing the most time.”
Accelo has been a huge game changer for Mandy because she's been able to save time on repetitive admin work like contract renewals that used to take hours. “Before Accelo, I would have to send hundreds of individual emails to clients when it was time to renew their maintenance contract. Due to the volume, I was frequently behind schedule which caused customers to receive insufficient notice. With Accelo, we use triggers to send renewal reminders 90 days prior to expiration, automatically. As a result, our customers are informed in a timely matter which has a direct effect on revenue and customer rapport,” she said.
In fact, Mandy predicts to see a further 20% increase in revenue by the end of 2018. She’s also confident that once she starts utilizing Accelo’s flexible quote creator, she’ll get back 50% of her working week just by automating her quoting process.
“Last year, I ran over 1,000 manual quotes, one by one. So if I do even half of those with Accelo’s automation I will definitely gain more time to focus on additional sales opportunities.”
“I really don’t know how we survived for so long as a business without Accelo.”