Sage Summit 2016 – Make No Little Plans

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xkzero welcomes you to Chicago and Sage Summit 2016!

xkzero welcomes you to Chicago and Sage Summit 2016!

Welcome to Chicago.  City of big shoulders.  Hog butcher to the world.  The windy city.  The second city.  The city by the lake.  Hometown of xkzero.

Daniel Burnham was the architect of the incredible urban plan that Chicago was built on, and In Chicago Burnham is equally famous for this saying:  make no little plans.

There is nothing little about Sage Summit this year.  15,000 registered attendees – the largest conference for small and mid-sized businesses in the world.  Holding this year’s Summit in the city that invented the skyscraper makes perfect sense.

For many of you, navigating Chicago may be a bit daunting.  If so, we’d love to help.  You can visit xkzero in booth #305 all week long at Summit.  You’ll find friendly Chicago experts happy to help you find your way around – recommend a great restaurant, find a blues club, or explore one of our dozens of beautiful neighborhoods.

At Sage Summit 2016 we hope you ignite your passion – and make no little plans.

Welcome to Chicago – we’re glad you’re here!

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Is now the time for mobile sales in your manufacturing business?

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Process improvement – process improvement – process improvement

process

As a manufacturing company process improvement is your credo. Process improvement is your mantra. Your DNA. It’s what you preach to your supervisors. It’s what you ingrain in the minds of your new hires. Process improvement informs everything you do in your work – and in manufacturing companies, process improvement informs everything from research and development to quality control to production planning, to packaging, shipping, receiving, and so on.  But what about mobile sales in your manufacturing business?  That could be a process worth re-evaluating.

Technology has given shape to most of the great process improvements in manufacturing business over the last 30 years. The great desktop PC era has revolutionized the way we work in business in almost every conceivable way all across your business from purchasing to materials planning to warehouse management, customer service and accounting. Paper-based and manual processes have been identified and targeted for replacement. Replaced by technology tools such as keyboards, monitors, printers, and scanners – to drive information and communication faster across your enterprise. The reason you’ve done so? To create a better experience for the user, to save time (aka labor cost), to accelerate your supply chain, and to improve overall communications. Quite simply – you made these changes in order to make your business better.

Yet, perhaps ironically, there is one group of workers inside most manufacturing companies whose jobs have not been impacted much at all by technology and process improvement over the last 30 years, and that is the outside sales rep. How can that be? The group of people most responsible for generating revenue growth, and most able to convey directly to your customers the experience of doing business with you – yes, that group – is by and large stuck using the same tools and following the same processes for the last 30 years.

A great many sales processes are built around:

  • Printed product catalogs
  • Price books
  • Spec sheets
  • Order forms
  • Phone calls back to the office
  • Email

These sales reps have little or no visibility to customer status, product pricing, ability to promise, cross sell suggestions. Whether the sales rep is onsite with the customer or prospect, at a special event, staffing a tradeshow, or roaming a showroom floor, the chances are they have a smart phone in their pocket – but the chances are almost as great that the smart phone will NOT have intelligence to help them close business or otherwise assist the customer. Smart phone and tablet technology is available now that can provide sales reps with far more meaningful interactions with customers.

Sales apps that are connected with your Sage ERP and CRM systems abound. The key is finding the right level of enablement for you and your sales team. As a manufacturing company this should be easily enough done because it’s all about making the selling process – the experience your customer has doing business with you – a faster, better informed and more complete experience. And that is exactly what you should expect to accomplish for your sales team.

xkzero specializes in Sage ERP integrated mobile sales, route sales, and direct store delivery automation for small and midsized manufacturers and wholesale distribution companies.

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Sales Essentials for 2016: Sage Summit and Beyond

Sales essentials for growing businesses

Thousands of businesses will converge on Chicago for Sage Summit 2016 to learn and share stories of challenge, innovation and change.

We hope you’ll visit us at Sage Summit 2016 in Chicago—our hometown! At xkzero we help companies grow sales and increase profits by providing high performance, flexible mobile apps engineered to integrate with Sage 100 and Sage X3. This year alone, clients will transact about $1 billion in new business using xkzero mobile sales and delivery apps for smartphones and tablets. As far as who is using our apps, there are no bounds to the range of industries that view mobile as a sales essential for success.

Learn how leading companies across North America are using Sage and xkzero solutions to stand out and win against the competition. Especially if you rely on route selling or direct store delivery to serve customers and close new business, have outside sales reps, sell at trade shows, attend special events, or have a showroom floor or parts counter, we hope you’ll stop by our booth.

Want a preview of the xkzero mobile sales and delivery solutions for Sage 100 and Sage X3 that you’ll see at Summit? Register now for our free webinar – Sales Essentials for 2016: The Power of Mobile.  

NEW DATE AND TIME: June 29, 2016, 12 pm EST

All Sage business partners and Sage 100 and Sage X3 end user customers are all welcome!

The Plight of the Modern Customer Service Manager

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Mobile help for customer service!

Mobile help for customer service!

Your hands are full

This is probably not news to you, but as a modern customer service manager you have your hands full! And that is mainly because your customers are now literally all over the place.

They are all over the place in terms of what they expect from you as a seller of goods and services. They are all over the place in terms of how they expect to interact with you. In terms of how they expect to place orders. In terms of how they inquire about their orders, or about the availability of product in your warehouse. Your customers are all over the place in terms of how they expect to pay you. All over the place in terms of the availability of intelligence for you to gather and discern. All over the place in terms of what it takes for you to earn their loyalty.

Yes, that is a lot to lay on you, as if managing customer service was not already challenging enough.

Because customer needs rule

But here is the good news—all of this customer expectation spells opportunity for you. That is because the winners in your industry today are the ones ready, willing and able to meet, greet and serve the customer wherever they are and whenever they’re ready to interact with you.

Your day is obviously filled with activities focused on what makes your most valuable to your company—building relationships, identifying customer needs, gathering intelligence, resolving issues, and representing your company These are all critical activities to the overall success of the business and building and maintaining brand loyalty.

However, what the customer expects from you, and when, has changed dramatically. Today’s customer wants and needs to interact with you on THEIR terms, not yours. Are you ready to meet them where they are? One way to get a sense of readiness is to take an inventory of your sales processes, technology and tools.

What your sales tools say about your business

What is the experience of doing business with you like today? Are you about to accommodate the wide range of buying expectations?

What possible ways can your customer interact with you when it comes to things like requesting a quote, placing an order, checking on inventory or shipment status? What means do they have to place an order with you?

  • Fax machine?
  • Telephone?
  • Customer service counter?
  • E-commerce website?
  • Customer portal?
  • Mobile app?

Our experience tells us that many of you reading this are still offering a sales channel built around the first three on the list—fax, phone and personal visit. While that may seem sufficient for you today, you may ask yourself about what your industry, and your place in it, will look like 2, 3 or 5 years from now. If competitors enter your space, do you think those new Millennial businesses will ask their customers to fax in orders? I don’t think so.

The smartphone is a profit machine

Have you noticed the communication tendencies of the new generation of workers? Their use of the telephone is a fraction of that compared to earlier generations. The modern workforce is far more inclined to interact with you online, often via an app on their smartphone or tablet.

I mentioned in an earlier paragraph that all of this is good news. And I believe it is good news. If you explore the marketplace you’ll see multiple options to connect E-commerce sites, customer portals and mobile sales apps with your back office ERP/accounting system.

Obviously you want to offer your customers access to you in ways that help you win more business and even more loyalty. So make sure your communication choices are reliable, dependable and supportable for you and your business. You just might find that you can do without that fax machine.

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xkzero specializes in mobile sales, route sales and direct store delivery automation for small and mid-sized manufacturers and wholesale distribution companies. xkzero is also a certified developer for Sage X3, Sage 100 and Sage 500, creating integrated and embedded mobile solutions into some of North America’s most popular and powerful ERP and accounting systems for the mid-market.

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Sage 100 Scripting Classes: Save the Dates

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Save the dates for these two upcoming Sage 100 scripting classes by Alnoor Cassim of xkzero!

  • Basics of Scripting for Sage 100
    2-day class, April 7 and 8
  • Intermediate Scripting for Sage 100
    2-day class, July 23 and 24 (pre-Sage Summit 2016 training)

Early bird alert!
Register for the intermediate class by April 30 to save $300. 
By popular demand, we extended this offer from the original March 1 date.

Email us now to save your spot (and a few hundred bucks)! 

Classes will be held at xkzero’s office, a 10-minute drive from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. For your convenience, the Intermediate class is being offered the two days immediately prior to the start of Sage Summit 2016 in Chicago.

Learn from Alnoor Cassim, one of the masters of customizing Sage 100 using Alnoor-LinkedInImageVB scripting. You won’t want to miss these classes.

The cost for each Sage 100 scripting class is $1,199.

Early bird price for Intermediate Scripting class registrations received by April 30, 2016 is $899.

Course registration fees include:

  • 2-day course attendance
  • 40+ page course curriculum
  • 75+ actual scripts of real-life projects
  • Continental breakfast, plus lunch (both days)

Email Santos Rodriguez now at srodriguez@xkzero.com to save your spot!
Space is limited, so contact us right away, and you will be placed into the queue in the order requests are received. A formal invitation with links for official registration and details on payment remittance will follow.

Don’t delay registration. Prior versions of these classes have sold out quickly.

We hope to see you at one or both of Alnoor’s scripting classes!

About Basics of Scripting for Sage 100 Class

The basic level Sage 100 scripting class will be a 2-day, fairly intense on-premise instructor-led classroom training at xkzero’s Chicago training facility. On Day 1, from the morning through lunchtime, Alnoor will lead a review and discussion of scripting concepts, and provide an overview of Sage 100 business objects, and an explanation of the ways Custom Office plays a major role in User-Defined Scripting. After lunch on Day 1, and all of Day 2, participants will have a heavy hands-on experience, with the vast majority of time spent working on labs and activities based on real-life Sage 100 scripting projects. Take-home materials included with the course: 40+ page curriculum, scripting reference guide, and 60+ actual scripts from real-life projects.

About Intermediate Scripting for Sage 100 Class

The intermediate-level Sage 100 scripting class will be a 2-day intense on-premise instructor-led classroom training at xzkero’s Chicago training facility. We have scheduled this class to accommodate those attending Sage Summit 2016 in Chicago, which begins July 25. This is a follow-up class that continues where the basics-level lessons left off. We will emphasize advanced concepts and user-interface (UI) scripts. It is designed for those who have been designing scripts for clients or for their own company projects, and now want to take scripting to the next level. Like the basics class, the majority of time will be spent working on labs and activities. Take-home materials included with the course: 40+ page curriculum, scripting reference guide, and 75+ actual scripts from real-life projects.

Prerequisite: Attendance of the Sage 100 Basics of Scripting course or permission from the instructor.

Early bird alert! Register for Intermediate Scripting by April 30 to save $300. Email us now to save your spot! 

 

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Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Operations Managers

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As an operations manager the design and control over business operations is in your hands.  As your industry evolves, your ability to stay on top of best practices and adaptation of new technologies is so important.  This article offers key insights into mobile B2B sales, and a practical guide for operations managers.

Mobile sales apps for B2B represent the new standard for growing small and mid-sized businesses. In fact, mobile B2B sales may be the greatest thing to happen for manufacturing and wholesale distributor sales reps since the invention of the printing press. There are very few technologies you can add to your business today that will have as far reaching effect on the quality of operations, and the bottom line of your business as a mobile sales app.

Job #1, as always, is to meet or exceed customer expectations. Your goals are centered around metrics like on-time deliveries, days on hand inventory and inventory turns. Mobile is setting the new standard for warehouse operations, and there is no role in the organization that will gain from the transition to mobile like operations will.

How will operations benefit:

  • Accelerated supply chain
  • Reduced delays and bottlenecks
  • Cost reduction
  • Increased order and invoice accuracy
  • Improved on-time delivery and other key metrics

Risk factors to watch out for:

  • Solutions that do not cater to your unique operations environment
  • Out of control budgets that customize projects can lead to
  • Poor or improperly designed integrations with your ERP system
  • Reliability of the mobile solution, and need for contingency planning

If your company has outside sales reps, or sells at trade shows, on a showroom floor, from special events or on-site with a customer –for you, the era of the printed product catalog, the paper order form, and the fax machine – is over.

Ready to talk about charting a mobile sales strategy that makes sense for your operations?  Contact us at info@xkzero.com or call 847-416-2009.

 

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A new fountain of youth (Webinar)

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“Like a kid on Christmas morning I tried it last night.  This solves everything I didn’t like about Sage 100″

Sage 100 discovers the fountain of youth?

Sage 100 discovers the fountain of youth?

Whether you’re old enough to remember navigating the internet before Google and Yahoo or not, you’re certainly young enough to imagine how much better Sage 100 could be with the power of total search-ability.

That time is now.

xkzero cordially invites you to join us to learn how one simple add-on to Sage 100 will change the experience for every single user, forever.

Search virtually everything and anything – across companies and across modules – using words, numbers, phrases, combinations, wildcards, date ranges, right within Sage 100. Click and browse straight to what you’re looking for.

Guaranteed to improve customer service, resolve disputes, improve workflow – and reduce training costs.

Who benefits most? Those who use it most.  REGISTER FOR THE WEBINAR NOW

GetX – Universal search for Sage 100 by xkzero installs in 15 minutes, works with versions 2016 back to version 4.5, and won’t break any customizations. GetX even searches User Defined Fields (UDFs), Extended Item Descriptions, transaction details lines, Memos and much much more.

Controllers love it. AP clerks love it. Receptionists love it. Executives love it. Sales reps love it. Managers love it. Operations love it. Newbies love it. Power users love it.

Join our webinar Wednesday March 2 at 11 am CST to see for yourself – and to learn how to claim your FREE 30-day, no obligation trial copy of GetX by xkzero. It’s the single most powerful button in Sage 100. Ever.

Register now – space is limited and filling up fast!  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5593314978910234881

 

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Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Sales Reps

Mobile automation is the new standard for B2B sales

Mobile automation is the new standard for B2B sales

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The mobile sales app for B2B represents the new standard for growing small and mid-sized businesses. It may be the greatest thing to happen for manufacturing and wholesale distribution sales reps since the invention of the printing press. Few technologies for business have the far-reaching impact on the quality of your work and your company’s bottom line of a mobile sales app.

If your company has outside sales reps, or sells at trade shows, on a showroom floor, from special events or on-site with a customer, for you, the era of the printed product catalog, the paper order form, and the fax machine is over. The integrated smart phone and tablet era is now. xkzero has summarized some important considerations for you here.

Salespeople

The impact of having everything you need in your pocket

Off you go to your prospect meeting. Off you go to the trade show. Off you go for another day on the showroom floor. Off you go, back to your hotel room. Off you go, equipped with a product catalog printed 9 months ago, a price list printed 6 weeks ago. Hoping the fax machine doesn’t get jammed when you send in your order. Hoping that a customer service rep is ready when you call to find out the status of the inventory you’d like to sell.

The new standard for B2B selling is the smart phone. It’s replaced the fax, the printed materials, and antiquated processes that hold back a business today.

How you will benefit from a mobile sales app as a salesperson:

  • You’ll be better prepared with fingertip access to up-to-the-moment customer and inventory data.
  • Customers and prospects will sense your increased confidence.
  • You’ll have the chance to close larger deals.
  • You’ll be able to complete high transaction volume sales more quickly.
  • You might not ever be late for a meeting again.

The price of not doing anything

Over 90 percent of the mobile sales automation projects xkzero has implemented over the past several years have been for companies that previously relied on the tools and processes of yesterday—printed product catalogs, paper order forms, and fax machines. For many of these businesses, sales reps had to call customer service for the status of anything customer or inventory related. Representing the entire spectrum of manufacturing and wholesale distribution industries, they have one thing in common. Once they switch from paper and manual processes to an automated mobile solution—they don’t change back.

More practical guides – Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Executives

Ready to talk about charting a mobile sales strategy for your business? Contact us at info@xkzero.com or call 847-416-2009.  Visit the xkzero website to learn more about our winning solutions.

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Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Executives

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Mobile sales apps for B2B represent the new standard for growing small and mid-sized businesses. In fact, mobile B2B sales may be the greatest thing to happen for manufacturing and wholesale distributor sales reps since the invention of the printing press. There are very few technologies you can add to your business today that will have as far reaching effect on the quality of your work, and the bottom line of your business as a mobile sales app.

The new standard for B2B sales is mobile

The new standard for B2B sales is mobile

If your company has outside sales reps, or sells at trade shows, on a showroom floor, from special events or on-site with a customer –for you, the era of the printed product catalog, the paper order form, and the fax machine – is over.

The integrated smart phone and tablet era is now. xkzero has summarized some important considerations for you here.

All stakeholders in your company—Executives, Salespeople, Operations Managers, Accounting and Finance and IT professionals—look at your business from a different angle. The great news is mobile can and will benefit all of them. But you need to avoid several pitfalls that can cost you money and headache.

If you have not yet mobilized your sales team, here are some important things for executives to consider.

Executives

From sales enablement to new revenue streams

Making or producing a great product is never enough to ensure business success, and relying on antiquated methods of selling can leave you vulnerable to new competitors that enter your market, hoping to disrupt.

More practical guides – Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Sales Reps | Mobile B2B Sales: A Practical Guide for Operations Managers

 

A mobile sales app can do more than simply replace the fax machine with a smart phone as a means to get orders in your system. (Think about that for a minute.) It can turn you into a disruptor yourself.

How your team will benefit:

  • Increased revenue
  • New revenue streams
  • Reduced administrative costs
  • Better served customers
  • New and improved customer intelligence
  • Attraction of a new generation of sales reps and customers
  • More profits

Risk factors to consider:

  • Choice between a packaged solution and a solution that is custom designed specifically for your business
  • Adaptation by your team and overall usability
  • Ability to integrate with your existing systems
  • Achieving a justifiable ROI

The Cost of Inaction

Over 90 percent of the mobile sales automation projects xkzero has implemented over the past several years have been for companies previously relying on the tools and processes of yesterday – printed product catalogs, paper order forms, phone calls to customer service for the status of anything customer or inventory related.  Fax machines…

These companies represent the entire spectrum of manufacturing and wholesale distribution industries.

One thing all of the companies have in common is that once they switch from paper and manual processes to an automated mobile solution, they don’t change back.

Ready to talk about charting a mobile sales strategy for your business?  Contact us at info@xkzero.com or call 847-416-2009.

Visit the xkzero website to learn more about our winning solutions.

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Former Sage Mobile Sales Specialist Joins xkzero

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reposted for original publication via PR Web

 

Mobile sales app developer xkzero today announced the addition of Karen Foreman as mobile sales specialist. Foreman comes to xkzero from Sage where she served in a similar capacity selling Sage Mobile Solutions and CRM.  Karen Foreman

“We are very fortunate to have Karen join our team,” xkzero co-founder, Paul Ziliak said. “Her knowledge of the Sage channel and understanding of the unique needs of Sage customers alone brings us great value, but what really sets Karen apart is her passion for mobile as the next generation technology for business. xkzero continues to invest in its products to help small and mid-sized distributors and manufacturers grow. Adding Karen to our team will only accelerate the number of companies benefiting from the larger orders, new revenue streams and reduced administrative burden delivered through mobile.”

Regarding her decision to join xkzero, Foreman expressed enthusiasm about the company’s offerings. She said, “xkzero continues to make major investments in the evolution of its products. iSales 100 provides advanced mobile selling capabilities that can not only satisfy very unique requirements, but it is also incredibly easy to set up and use. xkzero Mobile Commerce (XMC) offers enterprise caliber functionality out-of-the box for companies using Direct Store Delivery (DSD), and Route Selling as a business growth strategy. Food and beverage producers and distributors are a natural fit for XMC, and its pre-built integrations to Sage 100 and Sage X3 create significant business advantages for growing companies.”

About xkzero:

xkzero specializes in mobile sales, route sales and direct store delivery automation for small and mid-sized manufacturers and wholesale distribution companies.  xkzero is also a certified developer for Sage X3, Sage 100 and Sage 500, creating integrated and embedded mobile solutions into some of North America’s most popular and powerful ERP and accounting systems for the mid-market.

For more information about xkzero or to contact Karen, please visit our website, email us at info@xkzero.com, or call 847-416-2009.
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