The Indian manufacturing industry has grown multifold in the recent years. Government is extending its support for the growth of manufacturing industry through favorable policies. However, there are still some challenges for the industry that organizations are looking to overcome with the help of new evolving technologies. Salesforce is creating the difference through its innovation solutions. Rajeev Ranjan, Editor, Digital Terminal held an exclusive interaction with Rajkumar Ravuri, Director - Manufacturing, Salesforce India. Mr. Rajkumar shared crucial insights about the new solutions, trends in the manufacturing industry. Read below the excerpts:
Rajeev: What are the major challenges for the manufacturing industry in a post-pandemic world?
Rajkumar: The manufacturing sector in India has tremendous growth potential. A strong domestic market, a large pool of engineers, billions of dollars in foreign direct investments, and supportive government policies like ‘Make in India’ and Product Linked Incentives (PLIs) are set to transform the country into a global manufacturing powerhouse. In fact, WEF estimates that India’s manufacturing sector EE could contribute $500 billion in annual economic impact by 2030.
However, to get there, manufacturers will need to up their game, not just on the shop floor but also on the front lines in terms of customer requirements. It’s no longer enough to simply make a great product. Product differentiation alone is no longer the compelling enough customer value proposition that it used to be. Manufacturers need to combine their smart and innovative products and solutions with the intelligent experiences that customers are demanding across the product purchase through ownership and usage lifecycle. Additionally, manufacturers also need to bring focus to their Commercial Excellence operations that encompass optimised sales processes, ability to accurately forecast demand, collaborate seamlessly with channel partners, drive efficient inventory management, supply chain improvements, and build business agility to respond rapidly to market shifts.
Changing or navigating new business models, making operational adjustments to accommodate radically changing demands and keeping up with increased competition in the market are just some of ongoing challenges that manufacturers are dealing with at present.
Rajeev: How can Salesforce support the manufacturers in overcoming these challenges? How do you see the role of Salesforce in helping the manufacturing industry to accelerate digital transformation?
Rajkumar: Manufacturers must navigate greater complexity than ever before and the disjointed, manual systems of the past won’t work in a 21st century economy. Leading manufacturers are already capturing, integrating, and analyzing data from across their organizations to drive better business outcomes.
Salesforce Manufacturing Cloud, is designed for manufacturers to unify account planning and forecasting for greater transparency and collaboration across their entire ecosystem. This unified view provides a clear picture of manufacturing customers through new sales agreements and account-based forecasting solutions that enable them to accurately forecast, plan, and drive predictable (and better) business outcomes. Manufacturing Cloud is a key component of Salesforce Customer 360, which empowers manufacturers to deliver intelligent field services, lifecycle marketing, channel management, B2B Commerce, and more, in a unified view, across their entire business.
Gemini Power Hydraulics today has unified customer and product data in a single source of truth which helps them get the best out of every customer interaction. They’ve also automated sales and service processes, leading to a 60% increase in sales team productivity, 10% reduction in sales cycles, and 10% boost in service team productivity.
Meanwhile, Penna Cement has empowered all sales officers with a consolidated customer view on their Salesforce mobile app. This helps them close more deals faster. The company also runs a dealer loyalty scheme program on Salesforce which helps them incentivise and reward dealers, masons, and other influencers who help drive sales. Initiatives like these have resulted in a 15% increase in sales volumes, 21% increase in operational efficiency, and 15% growth in dealer and influencer networks. In addition, Unimark increased service team productivity by 25% while reducing billing cycles by 15 days and Saint-Gobain Glass saw a 2x increase in sales meetings recorded on Salesforce.
Rajeev: Please tell us about the upcoming trends for the manufacturing industry.
Rajkumar: Since the pandemic, manufacturers around the world are fast-tracking their digital transformation initiatives across all domains. Increased adoption of technology such as cloud computing, robotic process automation, low-code development, and others are driving this digital revolution, giving manufacturers endless opportunities to explore new solutions.
Some of the key upcoming trends which are pivotal to the manufacturing sector are centred around IIoT, 5G, Metaverse and Net Zero sustainability.