Consumer Goods Cloud (CGC) is a B2B solution that is part of the Salesforce Customer 360 platform. CGC provides consumer goods organisations a highly customisable, industry-specific platform that gives useful insight about their customers to drive revenue and streamline retail execution activities for their field sales reps.

Field sales managers and reps using CGC can easily identify and execute assigned retail execution activities via the Retail Execution mobile app. Furthermore, they can maximise their interactions and build relationships in-store without having to perform redundant tasks.

The following sections discuss key features and capabilities within CGC.

Field Sales Managers – Retail Execution Planning

Assessment Tasks

Field sales managers can create Action Plan Templates with a few or all of the following standard tasks which are to be executed by field sales reps during an in-store visit:

  • Planogram Check
    • Used to validate the actual product-to-shelf allocation against the planned product-to-shelf allocation which allows the field rep to determine if customers are satisfying their share-of-shelf contractual agreements.

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  • Promotion Check
    • Used to assess the impact of the promotions on overall sales and CSAT scores.

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  • Inventory Check
    • Used to validate and capture the following information regarding inventory levels of a Retail Store:
      • Number of products at each In-Store Location
      • Share-of-shelf % for a product
      • Number of your product facings versus competitor’s product facings

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  • Order Creation
    • Field reps can easily reorder out of stock products or reorder products from previous visits.

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  • In Store Survey
    • Field reps are able to conduct surveys with buyers and store managers to capture feedback and draw insights.

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  • Other Task (custom)
    • The ‘Other’ task definition is flexible and can be used by a sales manager to cater for different business requirements e.g., an asset check can be defined to validate that an in-store fridge asset is working as expected.

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Action Plans

An Action Plan is a native Salesforce feature that utilises a template (Action Plan Template) with a generic set of Assessment Tasks.

Field sales managers can associate different Action Plans to different store visits based on the compliance metrics/tasks that need to be validated at the store i.e. not every store visit may require all task types to be executed.

Example:

  • Store 1 – Action Plan Template 1 – Promotion Check, Planogram Check, and In-Store Survey
  • Store 2 – Action Plan Template 2 – Inventory Check and In-Store Survey

A single Action Plan Template can be reused and associated across multiple Visits. This eliminates the need for sales managers to manually define the Assessment Tasks for each Visit.

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Visits

Sales managers can create visits for specific retail stores in the territories they manage when they feel the store needs attention or it’s time for routine compliance checks.

An Action Plan Template can be associated to the Visit which contains relevant Retail Execution Activities that need to be executed in-store by a field rep e.g., Planogram Checks.

Einstein Visit Recommendations

Field sales managers strive to consistently schedule visits for their field reps at the right stores at the right time.

Example: A promotional opportunity to upsell a product at a specific store during a specific period may arise. By readily seizing this opportunity, a consumer goods business can increase their overall sales and profits.

Einstein Visit Recommendations for CGC uses historic data and predictions to provide an intelligent list of Visit Recommendations.

Example: Retail Stores that haven’t been visited for a while could be flagged in the recommendations.
Sales managers can review this list and select specific recommended visits to schedule or can schedule all recommended visits in a single click.

Salesforce Maps

Field sales managers can utilise Salesforce Maps to intelligently optimise and schedule store visits for field reps based on factors such as SLAs, store hours, distance to store, travel time, real-time traffic information and client calendar availability.

Field reps can easily view and follow the optimised route for Visits from the Retail Execution mobile app. Reps can view vertical spaces and map layers on the map for enhanced visualization of their route.

Stores can also be categorised on the map via colour coding e.g., the colour ‘red’ could be used to indicate stores which require immediate attention.

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Analytics

CGC offers field sales managers the following Tableau CRM dashboards to analyse the performance of stores and field reps in their territory. Managers can use these dashboards to gain valuable insights and make improvements to future store visits.

  • Team Performance – Leader board to identify top performing field reps and provides a comparative analysis of reps over time.
  • Field Rep Performance – Allows managers to drill into a specific rep to understand their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Store Performance – Provides actionable insights into stores that require attention and their level of compliance to contractual agreements.

Note: An additional Tableau reporting feature license is required on top of the standard CGC licenses to provide access to these dashboards and other Tableau report/dashboard capabilities.

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Field Sales Reps – Retail Execution

Retail Execution App

CGC offers the ‘Retail Execution’ mobile app which is built to streamline the retail execution journey for a field sales rep and make it more accessible on the go.

When a field rep first opens the app, they can see the visits scheduled for them via an embedded Google map view.

A rep can also view upcoming visits via the ‘All Visits’ list.

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Field reps can drill into a specific Visit record to view the tasks they need to execute in-store via the ‘Tasks’ tab.

Additional information captured for the Visit and relevant Retail Store can be accessed via the ‘Overview’ and ‘Notes’ tabs.

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Ad hoc Visit Creation

Things may not always go exactly as planned during a field rep’s Retail Execution journey and hence, an additional store visit may be required. In such situations, a rep can easily create an ad hoc visit directly from the Retail Execution homepage.

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Previous Visit Details

Field reps can view the details and notes captured against the previous 10 visits to a Retail Store. A rep can use this information to build context for an upcoming visit and can determine whether a change in strategy is required.

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Scan, Search and Filter

When executing an ‘Inventory Check’ or ‘Order Creation’ task, a field rep can search, select, or add products by manually searching for the specific products, filtering products by a specific In-Store Location such as a ‘checkout counter’ or scan a product barcode.

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Shopping Cart

Field Reps can quickly add products to a shopping cart by clicking on the ‘Order Creation’ Retail Execution Task. Products can then be added or removed from the cart before an order is placed. Reps are also able to restrict the cart view to only display ‘Favourite Products’ if required.

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Summary

CGC could be the perfect solution for your consumer goods business if you desire to:

  1. Build effective relationships with your customers
  2. Streamline the retail execution process for your field sales team
  3. Ensure that every store operates as a perfect store

Author – Sailesh Vempaty

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