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Whether in cars, smartphones or airplanes: The precision formed parts and mechanical fastening systems of SFS AG can be found in a wide variety of end products and, although not always visible, reliably fulfill functions critical to success.

Among its customers, SFS AG is known not only for its product expertise in a wide variety of industries and markets, but also and above all for its customer proximity.

In order to deepen this even more, SFS AG relies on the itmX crm suite to manage its sales.

Bei ihren Kunden ist die SFS AG nicht nur für ihre Produktkompetenz in unterschiedlichsten Branchen und Märkten bekannt, sondern vor allem auch für ihre Kundennähe.

Um diese noch stärker zu vertiefen, setzt die SFS AG bei der Steuerung ihres Vertriebs auf die itmX crm suite.

A new CRM was sought that could implement the special sales set-up

Inventing Success Together – that is the performance promise of SFS AG. Under this guiding principle, tailor-made products and intelligent solutions are created that provide customers with sustainable added value. In addition to innovation and quality thinking, this also requires in-depth technical know-how.

In order to manifest this already in the sales initiation process and in regular customer support, SFS AG wanted to replace its old CRM system with new, up-to-date software. This was not only to be seamlessly based on SAP ERP, but also to implement the special sales control that SFS AG has due to its many different product ranges.

Requirements for the new CRM solution included:

  • The structured capture of customer knowledge
  • A potential-supported support of the customers
  • An efficient visit preparation and follow-up, which at the same time provides a quick and comprehensive overview of the customer
  • Effective capacity management in sales
  • Construction object management including document management

Part 1 Reference Interview: Selection and expectations of the CRM system

Transparency in customer potential simplifies sales capacity planning

The overriding goal of the new rollout was to expand customer orientation even further and to deploy the capacities of the field sales force more efficiently. Efficient use here means not only avoiding idle time, but also spending time with the right customers, i.e. those where the potential is high. To achieve this, SFS now has a potential date per customer and per main commodity group, which is regularly updated by the sales force.

Weekly planning has also become much easier with this potential-based sales management. Whereas SFS field staff used to take an office day to complete the previous week and plan the new one, they are now usually on the road all five working days. This is because planning has become much easier thanks to the transparency in customer potential.

“The captured potential of our customers has increased many times over compared to the past. Our sales force now spends its time with the right customers. Which has not only brought a significant leap in transparency for the sales department itself, but also for the sales manager, who can now better manage his employees.”
Lothar Grimm, SFS Group, about the benefits of itmx crm

Customer profitability calculation takes sales appointments to a new level

But it was not only visit planning that was significantly simplified. The quality of customer meetings has also been significantly improved through the use of CRM. The sales force is now able to call up all the information about the customer with just a few clicks. This includes customer profitability, where the direct costs incurred by a customer can be systematically assigned to each business transaction. This gives the SFS sales force the opportunity to discuss possible process improvements on a completely different level than would have been the case in the past.

Through sophisticated quotation and activity management, SFS has also managed to significantly increase the success rate of quotations. Every time a new quote is created, an activity is also immediately created to remind people to follow up.

Part 2 Reference interviews: Changes in the sales process

No interfaces thanks to direct integration into SAP ERP

The integrated approach of itmX also helps SFS AG enormously from a technical perspective. Since itmX crm is based directly on SAP, data synchronization between ERP and CRM is simple and, above all, interface-free. No additional system is required, as would be the case with a classic SAP CRM.

In addition to the deep SAP integration, probably the biggest benefit of the itmX solution from a technical point of view is that today all our divisions access just one global system. We have thus created a tool that gives us complete insight into all customer-related company data. This has brought our individual divisions even closer together and thus strengthened collaboration across the entire company.
Ralf Gottschalk, SFS Group, about the seamless SAP integration of itmX crm

Another benefit is that today all divisions of SFS AG work together in one system. Before itmX was introduced, the individual divisions were each working in different systems and thus had no transparency whatsoever about the activities of the other divisions.

The ability that we have to access all SAP data is phenomenal. It allows us to directly view orders and quotations for the customer and thus also directly read out key figures that are always up to the minute.
Ralf Gottschalk, SFS Group, about the seamless SAP integration of itmX crm

Part 3 Reference Interview: Technical components of the CRM system

Part 4 Reference Interview: Roadmap CRM system

Networking at the customer has improved significantly since the introduction of CRM

SFS AG agrees that, in addition to internal transparency, the introduction of CRM has also improved overall management. Today, better key figures are available to make strategic decisions. Questions such as: Where is an additional sales representative needed because areas are still unserviced? But also questions like: Where is too much sales capacity currently being deployed? can be answered easily today.

Also in the overall result of the field service a lot has changed since the introduction of itmX crm. The number of visits per working day has increased. This can be attributed to the fact that the sales staff handle their time more carefully and, above all, more efficiently and, for the most part, only visit customers where a high potential can be identified.

“Overall, SFS has become more sales-driven. Thanks to CRM, we are better able to network with our customers. In the meantime, there are no 1:1 relationships between the customer and just one sales representative, but today, for example, a measurement technician is networked with a quality manager, or a sales manager with the production manager, etc.”
Lothar Grimm, SFS Group, about the benefits itmX crm has brought to the company

Part 5 Reference Interview: Benefits that itmX crm has brought to SFS Group

Other companies that rely on the itmX crm suite

Let’s write the next success story together!

Every relationship is unique. If you would like to learn how we can develop unique stories and solutions together, please feel free to contact us.

Dagmar Cölln
Dagmar CöllnSenior Sales
+49 7231 96825 10