A good sales rep knows that an effective contact database needs to contain more than numbers and addresses. Networking with business partners requires a knowledge of everything from professional correspondence to the personal touches that can help close a deal-things like the hobbies, family ties and outside interests of the client.
Learning that information is one thing; keeping track of it is something else entirely. So goes the philosophy behind Janna System's Janna Contact Enterprise, a relationship management system that integrates all customer interactions into one knowledge management system.
Janna Contact Enterprise delivers contact-centric document management, workgroup scheduling and personalized communication features in a scalable, mobile-enabled n-tier environment. The system follows a "contact-centric" approach that lets users store all information alongside the customer profile.
The program allows users to create and easily update profiles on all important clients. Basic information such as telephone numbers and addresses can be augmented with custom fields like hobbies, children's names and even a photograph of the client.
But Janna Contact Enterprise is more than just a database. The program, which works through a series of pop-up windows similar to those found on Microsoft Office, also offers a variety of other features that help manage all aspects of the business-client relationship. The integrated document management component lets users store all client-based documents-letters, faxes, e-mails, spreadsheets and more-along with the client contact sheet. Documents can be viewed and edited without leaving Janna Contact simply by looking up a contact's name-a tool that ends the typical process that begins and ends in a word processor application.
The system's extensible architecture allows for integration with back-office and third-party applications, and a document library allows documents to be shared across the entire enterprise.
The scheduling component lets users see an integrated schedule and task list at a glance, even days or months in advance. Sales performance is tracked through the opportunity management segment, which also works as an information reporting system.
One of the strongest features of Janna Contact Enterprise is its ability to be easily customized to meet the needs of the user.
After using Janna Contact Enterprise out of the box for several months, Spectrum United Mutual Funds of Toronto, Canada, implemented some custom changes to the product.
Janna Contact Enterprise Architecture
One customization Spectrum added to Janna Contact was a system that allows wholesalers to access summary level information when calling on distributors. "We're in the mutual fund business, so when our wholesalers are visiting clients, they need to know how much sales any one person has done with us and in what products," says Naj Hirani, chief information officer and vice president of information systems and technology with Spectrum. Spectrum fed the summary-level client information into Janna from its data warehouse, Hirani says, which turned the Janna system into an "information repository" for the sales force.
- Can be integrated with CTI, Imaging, Data Warehouse and Workflow Management systems.
- Contacts and appointments can be synchronized from Microsoft Outlook 98 and Palm Pilot.
- Custom extensions can be written in VB, VC++ and Delphi.
"From our point of view, it was a very easy customization that enabled us to do a database in a very quick and easy manner," Hirani says.
With a sales force of about 30 that covers all of Canada, Spectrum management needed a way to gauge its sales force's strengths and weaknesses and make adjustments where needed, Hirani says.
Through customization to its Janna program, the organization was able to construct a system that allows management to see where and how the sales force spends its time by asking the reps to log the time it takes them to do certain activities.
"What it has done is allowed the sales management team to actually sit down and think about, first off, what are the activities the sales force should be doing," Hirani says, "and then assigning what it is we want them to do. That in itself has been an advantage that brings focus to attempts to make sure they're targeting specific business activities."
With Janna Contact, notes are stored electronically and are readily available to all who need them. And that's good news for Hirani.
"We're very pleased," Hirani says, "not just with the system, but with the organization itself in terms of their ability to distribute and support the product and the client. We're one of the happy clients."
Facts and Figures
Product: Janna Contact Enterprise
Vendor: Janna Systems, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Problem: Information on important sales contacts is scattered throughout the office. Phone numbers and addresses are kept in one system, while important letters and other documentation are kept elsewhere.
Solution: Janna Contact Enterprise integrates contact information into one, easy-to-access system.
Price: $799 per single-user license
Contact information: (416) 483-7711, ext. 263; www.janna.com