Planchers Mercier, a specialist in the manufacturing and delivery of hardwood flooring, sought Createch's expertise to centralize its data, save time, and control its prices. Discover how the company successfully achieved their goals through the adoption of Microsoft Dynamics CRM!
Planchers Mercier: Three Generations Dedicated to Quality
The Quebec-based company Planchers Mercier is a family-owned business founded in 1980, which has been organized around three successive generations. Specializing in the manufacturing of prefinished hardwood floors, they distribute their products through specialized stores in Canada and in the United States.
In 2000, favorable market conditions and organic growth allowed the company to double its revenue. Today, Planchers Mercier employs 275 employees and pushes forward the quality and excellence of their products while maintaining a close relationship with their customers.
"People appreciate our respect; a value that really resonates with us" says Jean-Philippe Dumas, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Planchers Mercier.
The Challenge: Data Centralization
Despite having a solid expertise in their field of activity, Planchers Mercier had to centralize and better organize their business information to facilitate their growth. They faced two main issues on a daily basis:
- Scattered data, and most specifically customer-related data. This problem was even more marked during the arrival or departure of staff and resulted in a significant loss of time when searching for information and updating their data.
- A complex and cumbersome price management process.
The company decided to integrate a technological solution that could address these needs. The recent change in their ERP system also seemed like the perfect opportunity to introduce a new tool.
"The trigger was primarily the need to centralize data. Since we submit a large amount of bids, we wanted to centralize them and achieve a better level of approval to control these prices" explains Jean-Philippe Dumas.
To serve their 250 customers throughout the year, Planchers Mercier also needed immediate access to accurate information.
External factors also played a role in Planchers Mercier's decision to change their practices: the pandemic increased demand for flooring in renovation and/or construction projects. People stuck at home wanted to improve their homes, which favored the company's business between 2021 and 2022.
In addition, they observed a 10 to 20% increase in hardwood prices, which furthered the need to implement a powerful and affordable solution.
Microsoft and Createch - A Winning Choice
Through the influence of large companies recognizing the benefits of customer relationship management (CRM) solutions, Planchers Mercier quickly chose Microsoft Dynamics CRM, a proven and centralized solution for managing, tracking, and storing customer data.
To support this solution’s integration, Createch emerged as the partner to rely on. During our initial video conference exchanges, our sales team was able to precisely identify the company's needs, which allowed them to trust us with this critical project.
"Createch has proven expertise; we had confidence in the brand and the company's reputation" said Jean-Philippe Dumas.
Some Challenges and a Great Victory
The integration, which took place in March until September 2022, went very smoothly.
"From the beginning, there was a fairly smooth integration, and it didn't take years - it happened in a relatively short timeline" says Jean-Philippe Dumas.
Createch took charge of some data cleaning, but the company was well prepared, which greatly facilitated the process.
"Yes, there were challenges, but nothing insurmountable" acknowledges Jean-Philippe Dumas.
Among these challenges was resistance to change from some employees who were less familiar with computer systems. However, organizing training sessions helped reassure the teams.
Significant Improvement in Information Management
The implementation of the CRM solution has brought several favorable results:
- Facilitation of day-to-day processes
- Database integration of products and customers
- Access to information was accelerated and made simpler
"In the past, it took three times as long to search for information. Today, we can find it in a matter of seconds" shares Jean-Philippe Dumas.
This software contributes to acquiring new functionalities capable of understanding the market, as opportunity management is improved by the scoring and approval system. Even though it's too early to evaluate a return on sales, the implementation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is effective because submissions are faster.
"We use it, and we wouldn't go back; we couldn't do without it for our daily tasks" says Jean-Philippe Dumas.
Moving Toward Business Automation
Microsoft Dynamics CRM, initially integrated for tracking customer-related activities, could be used in the future for sales forecasting. This would involve granting customer access to the database so that they can record and track existing opportunities.
In the coming years, Planchers Mercier, which aims to expand into new sales areas, is considering modernizing its business to streamline processes:
"With the scarcity of labor, we aim to further automate our computer systems and equipment" says Jean-Philippe Dumas.
This momentum is made possible with the support of world-class technology and the expertise of Createch, upon which the company can continue to rely.
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