Many business-to-business (B2B) companies are somewhere along the journey of transforming their resource-intensive "traditional" sales model to that of a modern, digitally-enabled one - shifting the role of the salesperson from ordering and re-ordering to consultative guidance. Now with COVID-19 forcing companies to bend and flex in ways previously unimagined, a digitally enabled sales model and supply chain is even more important than ever.
Companies need to make sure that, above all else, they can deliver the following five critical capabilities.
To provide these holistic, end-to-end capabilities, digitally enabled sales models need to be tightly integrated with supply chain systems, including planning, sales and operations planning, inventory management, and distribution. Ideally these would all be managed through an ecommerce engine, allowing customers to serve themselves. At the least, sales reps should be able to help customers with these five capabilities quickly and easily.
For companies that do not have these capabilities or integrated systems in place today, this crisis is a clear wake-up call for the urgency of modernizing tools and capabilities.