Blackbridge is a communications agency that helps clients attract and engage talent. They work for a wide range of organisations from FTSE 100 businesses to charities and start-ups.
Their business proposition is three-fold. First of all, they assist with attracting and helping businesses to recruit top talent. Secondly, they assist with improving engagement and using communication to increase performance. The final aspect of their business is that they deliver a wide range of other communication solutions, such as research, design, and digital.
This client had used Salesforce prior to us meeting them but had then moved away from the platform due to a lack of user adoption. When we came to work with the agency we knew how important it would be to ensure we built a single common sales process and commercial framework that enabled them to easily manage their accounts and opportunity pipeline. We had to make sure that every interaction the team had was as simple as possible, so we cleaned the page layouts and set up a workspace that required them to only enter critical information at the right point.
The Blackbridge team believed that Salesforce was the right solution, but that they needed the right help to get up and running in the best way. They had money to invest in doing this, but they wanted to keep this tight as they had been burnt before. We worked together quickly and practically to maximise a return on their investment, working closely with the team to understand:
- What functionality & features had been used by the team when they first rolled out Salesforce
- Where the points of frustration were for the users
- The critical pieces of information that would be needed for each team at each stage
By understanding what had been used previously and where the pressure points were, we could learn from these mistakes and focus on making the user experience better. Mapping these processes prior to commencing system configuration is critical to ensure that all core requirements are being fulfilled. Once this stage has been completed, any test procedures then have a structured point of reference in order to determine whether the requirements have been delivered successfully.
The business leaders were heavily invested in the delivery of this project, and in order to satisfy their needs, we worked to an agile model where we could accommodate changes to the process as visualisation of the configuration became possible. This allowed the group to review and iterate at checkpoints through the configuration process. At these points, we would refer back to the original business objectives and requirements documentation to ensure that the system is delivered in accordance with their expectations.
As each phase was completed, internal testing was carried out. Once we were satisfied with the solution we handed it over for end-user testing. During internal testing, user scripts were generated and shared with the client – enabling them to follow defined click-routes and sign off each stage. Any findings were then categorised based on whether adjustments needed to be made prior to roll out, or alternatively, any suggestions/changes that they wanted us to implement in the future. This enabled us to maintain momentum with the delivery while remaining focused on future functionality improvements.
The timeline for this Salesforce implementation was 4 weeks, and due to the size of the project, we delivered across three phases. The first phase of work was to create all the data capture points on various Objects (Accounts, Contacts, and Opportunities). We also added some basic automation to update the Account to ‘Active’ when Opportunities are Closed Won. Phase two involved data migration, whilst phase three focused on Management level reporting, allowing stakeholders to view high-level data from a single dashboard.
Blackbridge has a team of 10 happy users that have been using the system for >18 months now, finding it a much easier and more pleasurable experience to work with. The senior management team also now has the ability to see a 360-degree view of the business, which is exactly what they needed, with Salesforce giving them both the insights to manage the client business as well as managing their own team members effectively.
We have had the pleasure of continuing to work with the Blackbridge team since their successful launch with us. Having been helped to realise the power of Salesforce, the agency asked us to continue to support them by providing a managed service. This gives us extra time to assist them in building out the system as the team comes up with new ideas and requirements for things that could be improved in line with the expansion of their own operation.