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The Handshake Difference
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Finding the right digital ordering solution for sales reps to adopt and use on the road and at trade shows.
A Clear Need for Change
With six brands, over 700 items in their catalog, and a hundred new product additions annually, Jobar International was quick to adopt a mobile order writing application that they hoped would help their reps sell more efficiently both on the road and at trade shows. What they expected to be an easy transition, however, was a difficult one when they discovered that the app wasn’t easy for their sales reps and back office staff to use.
Ultimately, they decided to make the switch to Handshake’s mobile order writing solution. According to IT Manager Max Kleniewski and Marketing Manager Willis Ha, the pivot to Handshake has impacted both their data management and sales processes.
A Familiar Story: Writing Orders Manually
Jobar’s in-house sales reps are on the road and at trade shows throughout the year. In both environments, they were writing orders by hand on paper. “It was a nightmare for both the sales team and the office,” says Kleniewski. “It would take three weeks to process trade show orders, and we’d lose potential business because customers and prospects didn’t want to wait.”
Indeed, while their reps do write a large volume of orders at trade shows, another big part of Jobar’s sales strategy is sending samples of their products to prospective customers. It was doubly important to get those sample orders processed quickly and sent to prospects while sales conversations were still front of mind. As Kleniewski puts it, “No prospect wants to hear that it’s going to take three weeks for them to get a sample.”
The First Attempt
Jobar was searching for an application that would allow sales reps to browse the catalog and write orders on a mobile device. According to Kleniewski, that first app “did what we needed, but it was really high maintenance. Uploading product images wasn’t easy, and it was difficult to upload customer data. It was also harder for sales reps to write an order.”
The poor user experience was making it impossible for reps to adopt the technology fully. Many reps found it easier to continue writing orders on paper, preventing Jobar from realizing the efficiency gains and more modern experience that they were hoping to achieve.
“At one trade show, no one was using the app. We wanted to know what we could do to better make use of this kind of technology,” says Kleniewski. “And at the booth next to ours, our competitor was using Handshake. They were essentially doing what we were looking to do––quickly scanning items, putting orders in, and sending them to their office directly from the show.”
Making the Switch & Prioritizing User Experience
The company decided to look into Handshake, doing a side-by-side comparison between the app that they had been struggling with for the last year and a half, and the solution they saw their competitor using so seamlessly at that trade show.
“We found Handshake’s interface to be much more user-friendly,” says Ha, who attributes this to more intuitive in-app navigation and better barcode scanning functionality, making it incredibly easy for reps to scan products with their phones or tablets to add them to an order.
When an order is submitted, it can be synced with back office systems immediately, and the customer receives an automatic order confirmation via email. “At our first trade show with Handshake, it only took us three days to process show orders because we were able to do it in real time,” says Kleniewski.
Product and customer data can be uploaded and managed easily, and Handshake also provides the Jobar team with aggregated reporting, allowing them to quickly and easily access information like daily order totals and total sales per rep.