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Salesforce is adding two new members to its cloudscape, a Manufacturing Cloud and a Consumer Goods Cloud.
In a blog post announcing the Consumer Goods Cloud, Director of Content Programs Nick Johnson noted that retailers using the company’s Commerce Cloud are looking to translate the advantages of ecommerce – such as easily buying products or having real-time visibility into data trends – to the in-store experience.
In 2017, he added, some large consumer goods brands on the Salesforce platform noted that they didn’t “have a solution to arm our field reps with the information they need to maximize the selling potential in store.” Field reps deliver and monitor products in specific retail locations.
In another blog post on both clouds, Salesforce Industries EVP and GM Jujhar Singh noted that manufacturers’ physical operations “can’t be easily modified to meet changing customer needs,” making intelligent planning all the more essential.
These two new industry-oriented clouds join Salesforce’s growing portfolio of clouds designed for specific industries, including the Financial Services Cloud and the Health Cloud.
The Manufacturing Cloud
The Manufacturing Cloud offers functions for sales and operations teams, and is intended to help forecast, plan and drive business in that sector. It was created in a pilot program with collaboration from such major manufacturers as Kawasaki Motors U.S.A./Engines Division, Hitachi Chemical, CF Industries, Mipx and Gelita.
This Cloud offers:
- Sales Agreements, so that ERPs, order management systems and account teams can be unified around consistent contract terms in a single agreement, such as order volumes, performance versus forecast and renewal dates.
- Account-Based Forecasting, providing a single forecast for sales, finance and operations teams. Updates can be made to reflect needs or market demands.
Outside of the Manufacturing Cloud, there are also new manufacturing-specific capabilities in the Salesforce Customer 360 Platform:
- Einstein Analytics for Manufacturing uses the Salesforce AI layer to generate KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for account health, demand insights, product penetration, progress in sales agreements, identification of clients with the highest likelihood of churn, and key trends that can affect upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
- Community Cloud for Manufacturing offers a pre-built template for manufacturers that extends sales agreements to channel partners.
- MuleSoft Anypoint Platform, built on Salesforce’s 2018 MuleSoft acquisition, makes available data from any application, data source or device, whether on-premise or in the cloud. Salesforce says this allows sales and operations teams to automate various business processes.
The Consumer Goods Cloud
The Consumer Goods Cloud, part of the Salesforce Customer 360 Platform, is designed to boost the ability of retailers to get “the right products to the right stores at the right time,” Salesforce said in its announcement. It added that its research shows nearly half of consumer goods leaders reported having no digital tools to track that “right products” flow, and noted that 95% of consumer goods are still sold in physical stores.
Here are screenshots of the Consumer Goods Cloud:
This Cloud is intended to support field reps, streamline operations and boost in-store experiences through several capabilities:
- Improving visit planning so that field reps can maintain a list of prioritized and assigned store visits, through suggested activities, mapping and the ability to analyze the health of the reps’ business and new opportunities across stores.
- Optimizing visit execution, with customizable templates that include inventory, planogram checks, order processing and surveys. A planogram shows the placement of products on shelves.
- Einstein Vision for Consumer Goods Cloud provides an image recognition and object detection service that lets a rep, for example, take a picture of a shelf in order to automatically find out if it is set up correctly without manually counting products and inputting data.
- Order taking that includes product, quantity and pricing.
Additionally, Einstein Analytics for Consumer Goods offers AI-driven recommendations and data for such KPIs as percent orders increase per store visit.