Skynamo gives managers better visibility and reps less admin
When Form-Scaff wanted to have a better way to check the effectiveness of its sales strategy, Skynamo turned out to be the solution.
Form-Scaff hires and sell scaffolding and formwork to customers ranging from big construction firms to small builders, and has a team of about 48 sales reps, plus internal sales staff. “But we all regard ourselves as glorified salespeople,” says Darryn Jacobs, Form-Scaff’s regional manager for Gauteng.
Darryn says Skynamo is used across its 19 branches in South Africa, but not in its other branches elsewhere on the continent. “We were looking for an option that could help to confirm how effective our sales teams are,” he says. “And we needed to save time.
“We had a system, an old system on Excel, which was a very post-call sheets kind of set-up. So the guys would come in on the Monday or Friday afternoon, and flood their call sheets on an Excel document. And they would obviously then be in the office quite often, and we wanted them out there into the field.
“So I researched it and I looked at the various options out there. And I liked what Skynamo could do.”
The company started using Skynamo just before lockdown began in 2020, and apart from wanting to save time, also wanted visibility into how the sales force was performing.
"“It’s freed up time to visit more customers – we’ve seen substantial increase in calls."
“If you look at a region like Gauteng, it is very small but dense, and as management, we were concerned that we were maybe not getting to every corner of Gauteng,” says Darryn. “One way Skynamo has been able to assist us there, is to show us where we are getting to, and where we aren’t. So we started here in Gauteng, as a pilot project, and it worked quite well.”
Darryn said the response to introducing Skynamo was mixed. “I’ve got guys who’ve been here for many years and guys who are new,” he says. “Some of the people who’ve been here for a while were resistant to it in the sense that they would forget to put it on in the mornings at first. It does also use a lot of data, which some people complained about.
“But I think over time, it got easier and grew on people, and I started getting compliments from guys who’ve been here for a long time who are pretty stuck in their ways, saying it was making their lives a lot easier.
“I think it helps that they don’t have to use a diary anymore. Everything’s recorded in real-time now. So the old-school way of diaries, where you have to fill out a page and then fill things in on the Excel document a week later – when you’ve forgotten what happened – is all gone,” he says.
“Now it’s all live, and there are functions like being able to record what you were doing at a particular site, and then get back to it later when you need to remind yourself.”
Darryn says being able to see where various reps are at the click of a button is extremely useful. “We have the most basic package, and it doesn’t talk to our ERP system, so at this stage it’s more of a GPS tool for me,” he says.
And of course there’s the time saved on tedious admin. “With the old system, updating Excel probably took a good hour or two every week,” says Darryn. “If you multiply that by four weeks in the month – per salesperson – that’s a lot of time saved. Now they can just do it on the go, in front of the customer.
“It’s freed up time to visit more customers – we’ve seen substantial increase in calls. When the guys first used it, we were looking at maybe two customers a day – which is still feasible, since we’re a project management kind of business. But now we’re up to six to eight a day.”
Finally, Darryn says, it’s useful for the reps to take photographs on their site visits. “Each time a guy goes there, he takes a different photograph, so I can see the progress. And it’s stored in the cloud so we can always go back and look at those photos again.”