We are committed to being a world-class Salesforce partner in the manufacturing vertical. We are focused on bringing solutions around data and analysis that enable leaders to make valuable decisions in real time, uncovering the quickest time-to-value and measurable returns on investments.

Areas of expertise

Discrete Manufacturing

Process Manufacturing

National & Regional Distribution

You can count on us

Deep experience in Salesforce for Manufacturing

Gerent has been successfully implementing technology solutions for both discrete and process manufacturers for the past 13 years. We are invested heavily in manufacturing and have in-house experts with years of on point use experience.

Manufacturing Cloud Expertise

Gerent is a proud Salesforce Manufacturing Cloud Partner. We are a go-to partner in manufacturing with years of market experience and one of the first to deliver Manufacturing Cloud to our customers.

Manufacturing is our largest focus area.

Making up 40% of our customer base, we know manufacturing and we know how to help manufacturers get the most out of technology to reduce working capital, waste and inefficiency.

Fast time-to-value

Quality is important to us but so is speed. Our project completion rate is known to be 40% faster than other Salesforce consulting and implementation partners saving you time and money and accelerating business value.

Substantial experience in both discrete and process

Because of Gerent’s experience in creating technology solutions for the manufacturing sector, we have the depth of knowledge to work with significant types of manufacturing - discrete or process - and deliver on our promise of high-value service.

Powering Manufacturers

Unlock data in real time

Present accurate data in real time across teams and facilitate stronger business discussion.

Facilitate decision making

Review accurate data and make timely course corrections or plan changes, enabling agility in changing market conditions.

Increase business efficiency

Enable account and product forecast accuracy, strategic KPI tracking and levels 1-5 dashboards.

How we can help

Meet Robert

VP of Operations at large enterprise

I run a multi-site operation, we have grown as a business through new product launches and acquisitions. I have an older ERP system and with each new acquisition, I inherit another. We spend a lot of time and effort on the integration of acquisitions, trying to find common ground in data that exists in many places that are disconnected from one another. In addition, I am trying to build business cases for investments and improvements in operations, but I struggle to get supporting information that can be trusted.

How can technology help?

  • Implementing enterprise-class software can facilitate the adoption of corporate standardized solutions.
  • Having data on a single platform enables rapid access to real-time reports and data, allowing for informed and confident data-driven business decisions.
  • Trending report data also uncovers and highlights which operations are succeeding and which need for improvement.
  • Reports and dashboards are sharable to the CEO and COO and can be viewed as needed.

Meet Sam

VP National Sales

I have 7 RVP direct reports with a total of 300 salespeople in the field; some are independent reps. I have to present a forecast by account down to the part number for a rolling 12 months. It seems like I spend most of my time forecasting. I also struggle to get the independents to forecast; they say it is non-value-added work for them.

How can technology help?

  • Integrating Manufacturing Cloud with your ERP systems drive volumes of data and can segment it by account to the part number.
  • You will be able to divide goals amongst your teams and track progress in dashboards.
  • With the use of AI, it is possible to drive insights into forecasting that are valuable and can shorten the process.
  • Enabling community access for you independent sales folks, providing access to sales and commission tracking will help engage them in the forecasting process.

Meet Mark

CFO Mid-Size Component Manufacturer

I am a single site facility in diverse markets with a high seasonality mix. The struggles of flexing the workforce or level loading the factory can mean the difference between making or losing money in any given month. I rely heavily on sales and operations working together on forecasting. I also need to watch volumes and pricing carefully, we have lots of competition and need to keep our customer base happy.

How can technology help?

  • Integrating Manufacturing Cloud with your ERP systems drive volumes of data and can segment it by account to the part number.
  • Setting up a dashboard to look for variability in volume and margin will help pinpoint areas of concern in real time.
  • Managing contracts and sales agreements by account to look for pricing opportunities.
  • Connecting forecast to inventory control to avoid obsolete inventory risks and accruals for expenses.

David Morley

Manufacturing Practice Leader

Our Head of Manufacturing, David Morley, has 30+ years of manufacturing experience in Asia, Europe and North America. He is an early adopter of Salesforce as a cross functional platform with a strong focus on growth and innovation.

Connect on LinkedIn

Our Point of View

Our Point of View

The Impact of Adopting an Agile Framework for Manufacturers explores the consequences of failing to adopt an agile framework, the benefits of implementing one, and the steps manufacturers need to take to succeed with agility.

Episode 34: How Digital and Lean Combined Can Help Manufacturers Respond Fast to Changes in Demand

By the time digital technology ushered in Industry 4.0 at the start of the century, lean thinking was a highly mature and proven approach. But history has taught us over and over that when something new and game-changing meets the tried-and-true, there will be conflict.

For proponents of lean methodologies, the arrival of digital technology was oftentimes dismissed as perhaps trendy, a flash-in-the-pan, a shortcut that wouldn’t work in the long run. And for the proponents of digital, lean was looked at as old-fashioned and way beyond its sell-by date. It was time to shuffle off to the old folks’ home.

In this episode of Ahead of the Curve, two highly experienced people, each a master of his own discipline, argue if and how digital technology and lean methodology can work together and what the combination could produce.

September 7, 2021

Sales Cloud Empowers an Equipment Manufacturer to Go Global

Sales Cloud Empowers an Equipment Manufacturer to Go Global

Client Success Snapshot

Client Profile:

  • Overview: A global manufacturer that produces proprietary temperature-control products for commercial use Manufacturing (Thermal Storage)
  • Industry: Manufacturing (Thermal Storage)
  • Team Size: 51-200
  • Annual Revenue: N/A
  • Headquarters: NC, USA
  • Markets: Global

The Challenge

Our client, a specialty producer of temperature-control products in North America, wanted to pivot its sales approach and achieve global scale. However, the company lacked the sophisticated CRM it would need to track its incoming leads, facilitate sales outreach, and understand how specific opportunities could contribute to its market share in a given region.

Gerent's Approach

Gerent implemented Sales Cloud and integrated the client’s email service — Microsoft Outlook — into the Salesforce CRM. Our team also established the product’s Contact Roles and Opportunity Management functionalities. Most of the work Gerent completed on the specialty equipment manufacturer’s account was out-of-the-box. However, our team created a few custom objects with WebFlow that would empower our client’s sales team to assess opportunities in specific geographic regions, industries, and verticals.

Key Outcomes

By implementing Sales Cloud with some customizations, Gerent helped the specialty manufacturer obtain the technological infrastructure it needed to pivot to a new sales strategy and expand its global footprint.

Sales Cloud’s intuitive platform empowered representatives to automate rote tasks, track outreach progress, identify their major competitors, and receive recommendations on any “next best” moves they should take to finalize a contract. Gerent’s customizations also furthered the sales team’s market research initiatives; with our custom objects, representatives can quickly quantify the potential of a specific market within a given region.

Client Success Story

When a business advances, its technological infrastructure needs to keep pace. Our client, a specialty producer of temperature-control products in North America, recognized this imperative when it began planning a significant pivot in early 2021.

Since its founding, the company has focused on bringing final-stage, consumer-ready products to consumer markets in North America. But as its operations expanded, the organization’s leaders realized that the business could achieve a global reach by instead selling its proprietary technology in bulk to manufacturers, who would use it as a component in their consumer products.

The company’s plans were ambitious; it wanted to establish sales agreements in markets around the globe. But at the time, the organization lacked the sophisticated CRM system it would need to track incoming leads, facilitate sales outreach, and understand how specific opportunities would contribute to its market share in a given region. Its usual go-to tool — Excel — simply wasn’t up to the task.

But Gerent knew of a product that could stand up to the challenge: Salesforce Sales Cloud.

Sales Cloud: A Turnkey Solution for Organized Selling

Sales Cloud is a cloud-based product designed by Salesforce for high-productivity sales teams. With it, our client could trade its siloed spreadsheets for a single source of truth — thereby ensuring that all team members had access to the most up-to-date prospect and partner information. Sales Cloud’s intuitive interface empowered our client’s sales team to access critical information about evolving opportunities in real-time. With a few clicks, representatives could track outreach progress, identify their major competitors, and receive recommendations on any “next best” moves they should take to finalize a deal.

But Sales Cloud doesn’t just facilitate outreach — it empowers organized deal making. The product’s built-in quoting capabilities allow representatives to automatically generate customized quotes and digitally transmit them to interested customers. To ensure alignment during negotiations, Sales Cloud tracks the quantities, standard prices, and quoted prices for all products included in a potential deal. Post-sale, the system can also establish revenue and quantity schedules that match the payment and delivery terms laid out in the contract.

Trading manual spreadsheets for an advanced CRM naturally boosted our client’s efficiency. Sales Cloud automated many rote tasks that previously demanded hours of the Sales team’s time; this transition allowed employees more bandwidth to pursue high-potential opportunities and forge connections with new prospects.

Sales Cloud’s Opportunity Roles Facilitate Insightful Outreach

To optimize prospect outreach, Gerent connected the client’s email service — Microsoft Outlook — to their Salesforce CRM. Once linked, Sales Cloud compiled each prospect’s outreach records into a readily accessible timeline, thereby allowing representatives to obtain instant insights into the state of a given relationship and deal progression.

Gerent’s team further enhanced these insights by establishing Sales Cloud’s Contact Roles functionalities.

“In manufacturing, there’s usually a group of people involved on deals because products like our client’s are large-scale and technical,” Bartek Dyckowski, the Lead Solution Architect for the company’s Sales Cloud implementation, shared in an interview. “You typically have at least three — the decision-maker, a project manager, and an engineer.”

“When you’re a salesperson, and you’re trying to sell something, it’s important to know the role a contact plays within an opportunity. I want to make sure I know who the decision-maker or executive sponsor is because that person has a lot of influence on a potential deal,” he concluded.

With Contact Roles, our client’s sales team could instantly identify a contact’s role and tailor their outreach accordingly. Naturally, this capability allowed representatives to take a more strategic approach to relationship-building and maximize their chances of converting leads into successful sales. Given the company’s intent to scale, this feature was invaluable.

Gerent Facilitates International Selling with Custom-Built Objects

Most of the work Gerent completed on the specialty equipment manufacturer’s account was out-of-the-box — in other words, the client didn’t require much custom work to obtain the CRM support it needed. However, our team soon realized that while Sales Cloud’s fundamental offerings covered most of the client’s needs, some special-order work would be necessary.

“We built custom objects to help with market research,” Dyckowski explained. “The client needed to quantify opportunities in specific geographic regions, industries, and verticals. Within a couple of clicks, the client’s Sales team could understand how much they stood to capture in a specific market within a given region.”

By implementing Sales Cloud with some customizations, Gerent helped the specialty manufacturer gain the technological infrastructure it needed to pivot to a new sales strategy and expand its global footprint. The undertaking was significant — and with Gerent’s help, well-worth the effort.

How can Gerent help your company achieve its ideal future state? Contact us today to start a conversation!

At Diakonia, a Quick Start Implementation Cuts Down on Wasted Time

Time is precious in the corporate sector. After all, a busy team only has so many hours to dedicate towards its goals — and losing any of them to rote paperwork can cause a frustrating lapse in efficiency. For the Diakonia Group, a holding company that encompasses several businesses in the materials handling sector, this organizational slog had become an all-too-familiar problem. 

The company’s recruiting department was inundated with job applications and candidate profiles. Normally, this would be a good problem to have; however, because Diakonia didn’t have a candidate tracking system (CTS) to automatically organize the incoming information, managing applications was often a time-consuming and inefficient process. 

“We didn’t really have a centralized way to track everything,” Kyle Keepes, a corporate recruiter for Diakonia, shared in an interview with Gerent. “We were using multiple Excel spreadsheets.”

Without a CTS, Kyle’s team at Diakonia often found themselves sinking valuable time and effort into information gathering and organization. The sheer inefficiency eventually compelled Diakonia to contact Salesforce for a digital solution. Salesforce, in turn, directed the company’s representatives towards an implementation partner — but according to Kyle, the initial experience wasn’t quite as supportive as he would have hoped. 

“Before Gerent, Salesforce recommended another partner, and frankly, communication was terrible — it was hard to even get proposals,” he explained. 

But after switching to Gerent, the Diakonia team finally received the thoughtful, tailored assistance they needed. 

Gerent Provides a Collaborative Implementation Experience from Start to Finish

“From the beginning, Gerent’s sales team was very supportive and down to business. You knew what they were talking about, and they delivered on their proposals,” Kyle said. “The implementation team really sought to understand our business and what we needed. Once they did, they were able to apply the concepts we asked for quickly and easily.” 

Gerent’s architects ultimately recommended a one-week Quick Start to implement the CloudGofer Recruiting App — a Sales Cloud product that provides CTS functionality at an affordable price point. 

With CloudGofer, Diakonia’s team could automate time-consuming tasks and gain a more immediate view of ongoing applications. The product would also facilitate a streamlined recruiting process and empower users to manage job openings, track candidate applications, send automated emails, and list jobs on external websites. 

The product suited Diakonia’s needs — but it wasn’t quite perfect. While CloudGofer provided all the CTS functionalities Diakonia would need to track employee placements, it didn’t have similar capabilities for contractors. The problem was easy to solve; Gerent simply extended Diakonia’s QuickStart by two weeks for minor code customization. 

The Gerent Result: Centralized Systems, Increased Efficiency 

Today, Diakonia maintains a customized CTS that empowers Kyle Keepes and his team to oversee their candidates — without wasting their time on rote paperwork. 

“The CTS helped us centralize our work and in turn, save time,” Kyle reflected on Diakonia’s implementation. “We don’t have to pull data from everywhere and the tool even gives us updates every so often. It’s provided a lot of value.”

So much value, in fact, that Kyle was kind enough to send over a review to his contact at Salesforce. “The Gerent team has done a great job,” he wrote in an email. “Thank you for recommending them to us and I would recommend them as a top choice to anyone looking to implement down the road!”

Could your business realize similar efficiency gains with Salesforce? Contact us today to learn how we can help boost your team towards success!

FreightWaves: Accelerating Outdated Pricing Processes with Salesforce CPQ

FreightWaves, a company well-known for providing the data and context that supply chain organizations need to accurately benchmark, analyze, monitor, forecast, and price within the $9.6 trillion logistics industry, built a global reputation on the strength and immediacy of its industry intelligence. FreightWaves products and services provide immediate value — but until recently, purchasing them was often a slow and inefficient experience. 

The Problem: Manual Quoting Procedures Lead to Slow Transactions

When FreightWaves approached Gerent in the fall of 2020, its quoting processes had fallen behind the times. Nearly all pricing efforts were completed manually by individual sales representatives — and while such a hands-on approach might not have posed a problem for a company with simple goods, FreightWaves’ offerings are, by necessity, complex digital products.  

Consider SONAR, FreightWaves’ comprehensive freight data and forecasting platform, as an example. SONAR’s proprietary tools distill actionable insights from thousands of informational sources and provide users with the most current freight activity and logistics rate indices on the market. The platform’s complexity made it invaluable to consumers but challenging to quote, as FreightWaves’ sales personnel needed to manually configure its expansive suite of offerings into their pricing figures. Often, they would need to generate multiple quotes until they produced one that suited a client’s needs. 

When taken in combination, these factors resulted in a pricing process that was cumbersome, overly complex, and inefficient. FreightWaves wanted to do away with its manual procedures and implement an automated quoting tool that offered quick, consistent, and customizable quotes. 

Upon hearing this request, Gerent offered a simple solution: Salesforce CPQ. 

Salesforce CPQ Offers FreightWaves Accelerated and Customized Pricing Capabilities

Salesforce CPQ (“Configure, Price, and Quote”) is a Salesforce-built tool that would give FreightWaves’ sales team the opportunity to generate accurate pricing figures for any stated product configuration. CPQ takes an abundance of factors — from optional features to customizations, quantities, and discounts — into consideration so sales reps can create personalized quotes quickly. 

FreightWaves’ sales team could also access product specifications and options through CPQ; this capability would, in turn, empower them to hone in on desired specializations, add-ons, and complex configurations even if a product expert isn’t readily available. Moreover, because CPQ is hosted within the cloud-based Sales Cloud platform, it could be used in conjunction with Salesforce’s CRM (customer relationship management) tools to drive more impactful sales decisions. 

Another notable benefit FreightWaves would realize by implementing CPQ is accuracy. To borrow a quote from Salesforce, “If your sales force has to manually research and write each quote, they are spending their time needlessly. The more accurate and efficient the proposed configuration and quote, the more of a trusted partner your organization will become.” 

By simplifying, accelerating, and automating the quoting process with CPQ, FreightWaves’ sales team would gain the ability to provide a tailored quote quickly and avoid bogging down negotiations with ill-suited proposals. The efficiency boost can’t be understated; some CPQ customers have experienced an up to 30% increase in quote accuracy post-implementation, according to Salesforce.

With Gerent’s Navigation, FreightWaves Sails Towards Greater Efficiency with CPQ

CPQ provided an intuitive solution for FreightWaves’ quoting quandary. Over a few short months, FreightWaves collaborated with Gerent’s solution architects to establish and customize CPQ to suit its unique needs. 

As a result, the logistics intelligence provider now enjoys all of the product’s out-of-the-box benefits and can readily produce multiple quotes for complex products within one proposal. When a client demonstrates interest in FreightWaves’ offerings, they are encouraged to submit specific information about what they want out of their engagement with the company. After submission, CPQ automatically generates a customized quote. 

Sales reps can independently apply discounts to sweeten the deal if necessary, too — without necessitating constant higher-up review. To avoid inconsistency, the pricing system is set up to ensure that all markdowns either fall within accepted parameters or trigger higher-level review. This, in turn, enables greater efficiency and team empowerment.  

An organization that helps supply chain organizations stay ahead of the proverbial curve shouldn’t be held back by outdated manual pricing procedures. With Gerent’s assistance, FreightWaves has established automated configure, price, and quote processes and set a new standard for efficient and satisfying client transactions. As a result, the company is better equipped than ever to maintain its place as an industry leader and continue charting a course into innovation.

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