Perspectives

Case Study

Re-designing the Knowledge Management Approach to Support a Customer Focused Strategy

Industry & Client Situation

A major telecommunications technology provider had adopted a market strategy that  emphasized leadership in the data technology marketplace and the broadening of customer relationships through enhanced offerings that provide end-to-end solutions to customer problems. In keeping with this focus, the organization faced the challenge of aligning the existing sales force with the new strategy. The implications for the sales force were twofold: 1) how to develop a data technology competency among the various sales organizations, and 2) how to evolve an experienced sales force from being product-centric to becoming solutions-oriented.

Approach

Bridge Strategy was engaged to provide insights on how strategic knowledge—i.e. knowledge related to the development of data and solutions based competencies—could be harnessed and efficiently delivered to the relevant sales teams.

The first priority was given to identifying and socializing the specific knowledge requirements. Bridge professionals worked with client teams to orchestrate efforts across the various sales teams to identify and validate each required knowledge element (e.g. value proposition, competitive tactics). Given the absence of many key knowledge elements, we spent extensive time working with the product management teams to help craft value propositions, gather competitive intelligence, and understand buying behavior for various solutions. Finally, we worked with the Data Networking dedicated sales teams to model high-performance activities and identify the complete suite of sales support that would be required to successfully compete in the data and solutions markets. As part of the effort, we designed and developed many of the knowledge requirements and tools that most impact sales performance.

In addition to the early suite of knowledge and tools to support data solutions sales, our client also lacked knowledge management processes and enablers that would allow the organization to continually evolve the solutions selling knowledge base and support tools.

To this end, Bridge designed and implemented a robust process for managing and distributing content that was supported by a web-based authoring desktop.

Results

Today, these processes and tools are tightly integrated throughout the full spectrum of our client’s sales support. Leveraging an existing sales force automation platform, sales associates can quickly access the specific knowledge templates (solution, technology, competitor or customer) that match their opportunity. Knowledge and tools continued to be developed to complete the integrated solutions selling toolkit. Finally, our client continued to adopt and evolve knowledge management processes to ensure the ongoing vitality of the effort.

The expected financial impact of this effort is substantial. In addition to strengthened ustomer relationships and increased data solutions revenue, this effort was expected to result in greater than 40% improvement in sales efficiency and 25% improvement in arketing efficiency.