Chris Job, Senior Analyst, Global SaaS Support Services
Salesforce launched Manufacturing Cloud in late 2019 to “connect sales and operations to drive forecast accuracy and visibility across your ecosystem.” This continues Salesforce’s pursuit of the Customer 360 initiative, which extends well beyond sales and marketing capabilities. Salesforce likes ambitious goals, and Manufacturing Cloud definitely falls into that category.
Since the launch of Manufacturing Cloud, our customers often ask us to evaluate how it fits their business and what it would take to implement.
This blog (our answer) covers the key features Manufacturing Cloud delivers to organizations looking to mass produce their customer success. I’ve also included tips on how to get the most out of your CRM investment.
What is Manufacturing Cloud?
Manufacturing Cloud creates an interconnection between sales, operations, and fulfillment to help manufacturers increase transparency in their production run-rate business. Salesforce believes this product will provide enterprises with a new, improved view into the management of production processes.
We believe them.
Manufacturing Cloud’s primary purpose is to prevent companies from being out-of-stock or over-supplied with the goods they produce.
I call this lead-to-product-delivery utopia.
Salesforce accomplishes this by tying together CRM, order-entry, and operations systems to create customer-by-customer production forecasts. Coupled with advanced analytics to evaluate supply-demand trends, businesses can gain more efficient production schedules while reducing costs.
Highlights of Manufacturing Cloud include:
- Consolidated views of the terms and deliverables of all contracts
- 360-degree view of every customer
- Account-based forecasting
- Integration tools, and
- Collaboration channels for real-time interactions between customers, partners, and employees.
That sounds like a lot – which it is – so let’s breakdown some of the more intriguing features a bit further.
Key Product Features of Manufacturing Cloud
1. Sales Agreements
This feature is my favorite! With Sales Agreements, you can surface data from& an ERP or order management system and store it in Salesforce. Doing so enhances data accuracy and transparency by combining this information with terms and conditions in the contract. Manufacturing Cloud users can view planned revenues next to actuals, which increases the performance of managing a run-rate business.
2. Partner Collaboration Tools
Experience Cloud for Manufacturers delivers a unified and customized experience for your partner network. Distributors and dealers collaborate with one another without jeopardizing confidential information. This gives sales reps more time to close new deals instead of managing their distributors’ or dealers’ business interactions.
3. Integration Tools: MuleSoft for Manufacturers
The powerful MuleSoft platform easily connects ERPs and order management solutions together with point-and-click technology. Aggregating data stored in ERPs or order management systems has several benefits. With MuleSoft, companies can ensure the accuracy of your CRM data, advance Customer 360 initiatives, and tie together front-office and back-office systems.
How to Get the Most Out of CRM Investment
Manufacturing Cloud connects sales and operations in new, dynamic ways. This solution delivers illuminating insights and efficiencies that you will not get with a siloed and legacy ERP.
But implementing a new cloud is not for the squeamish or faint of heart. It requires a thorough investigation of needs, expert planning, and then the fortitude to push the project through.
We recommend talking to an expert who will guide you through the process. If you haven’t read about the Salesforce service void, you should, as it can mean the difference between the success or failure of a project. Finding the right partner for continuous innovation of your CRM solution is the best hedge to get beyond legacy and not end up in the void.
Managed services from Spinnaker Support addresses the challenges and requirements needed to have an exceptional Salesforce system for the long term. Our certified experts provide direct support. We’ll deal with releases, fix urgent bugs, deliver continuous innovation (on your schedule), and advise on your long-term Salesforce initiatives.
To learn more about how we help businesses develop and sustain their salesforce environment, check out our managed services offering.
Chris Job has spent over five years implementing complex Salesforce solutions in high-tech, healthcare, manufacturing, finance, and professional services industries that operate on monthly or non-recurring revenue models. He enjoys understanding customer needs to help them advance their Salesforce ambitions, driving user adoption, and helping customers get a maximum return on their CRM investment.