The single biggest mistake in sales?

Meet the fax machine

“Four pages total. That should only take me about 20 minutes to enter into our sales order system!”

What makes a great sales process?  

Processes paired with the right business tools in order to drive maximum revenue at the lowest sales administration cost possible.   If you can do that while providing excellent customer service and a rewarding experience for your employees then you’re really on to something.

Which makes me wonder – can you have a great sales process when the tool in the middle of it all is…a fax machine?

At a recent technology conference, I presented a session entitled, “Why mobile, why now: a decision maker’s guide to success.” I asked the audience, “How many of you use a fax machine in your sales process?” Out of the approximately 110 people in attendance, half of them raised a hand.

Mobile app developers salivate at the sound of this kind of news.

Back in the 1980s and 1990s, the fax machine had its heyday, but it no longer serves us well. Today, using the fax machine as a tool for sales and purchasing processes can have a negative effect on your business. Here are some reasons:

  • It’s wholly inefficient.
  • It’s unnecessarily time consuming.
  • It creates potential for inaccuracies.
  • It terrifies younger workers.

In a world of integrated systems—ERP, CRM, e-commerce, mobile commerce—the fax machine should be at (or near) the top of your hit-list of antiquated tools to replace.

When a transaction is faxed, literally twice as much labor is required to complete the transaction than with an integrated mobile sales app—or even an online solution. A faxed order is first created on one system by the person generating the order, then it must be received, reviewed, and entered againthis time in the system of the receiver.

Benefits of an integrated mobile sales app include:

  • eliminate the redundant entry on the other end of the transaction
  • speed up the supply chain
  • reduce of errors
  • better experience for the sender and the receiver

As your company grows and the volume and size of the orders increasesthe more costly the fax machine becomes for you.

Whether you realize it or not, you are inevitably hiring workers in the new generation of so-called digital natives (those who were born using digital technology). Will your sales training include processes built around the fax machine, or will you embrace modern technological processes that will make your team more productive—and help you attract and retain an efficient and staff?

This entry was posted in Mobile Commerce, Mobile ERP, Mobile sales, Revolutionize ERP and tagged , , by Paul Ziliak. Bookmark the permalink.

About Paul Ziliak

Paul Ziliak, co-founder of xkzero has helped conceive and launch mobile sales and delivery automation apps for smart phones and tablets. Designed for mid-sized and growing manufacturers and distributors, the xkzero brand apps leverage the power of popular back-end ERP and accounting systems. A registered CPA and former auditor, Paul has spent 20 years designing and implementing ERP and accounting solutions using Sage 100, Sage 500 and Sage X3 in industries such as food and beverage, wholesale distribution, and numerous discrete manufacturing environments. Paul lives in Chicago and is a married father of three sons. An active leader in Illinois CPA Society networking events, Paul has also coached youth baseball since 2007. Websites: Blog: Social media handles: @PaulZiliak @erp_apps