We want to give you a deeper understanding of what goes on behind the scenes at Barbour ABI, as well as connecting with major figures within the industry to learn what makes them thrive. This month we are speaking to Richard Morris, Director of Insight & Sales at Speedy Hire. Richard’s teams have been steadily rolling out the new Barbour ABI platform in recent months, and he sat down with us to explain the benefits of Barbour ABI for their hire business.
Hi Richard, can you explain who you are and how Speedy Hire use Barbour ABI?
As the Director of Insight and Sales Operations at Speedy Hire, my role is about supporting and enabling the frontline sales teams to be efficient and effective within their roles. Ensuring they have a good understanding of how a tool such as Barbour ABI can help in their role is a key component in that process. We have around 150 external sales professionals managing our target sectors, customers, and associated territories, all of whom could benefit from the new platform.
What are the main benefits you’ve discovered with the new map-based Barbour ABI platform?
We rolled out the new platform to a small sales team in one territory to learn the system and the improved functionality before we then rolled it out to wider teams. The feedback and results that we’ve seen thus far have been fantastic. For instance, we were able to set up every salesperson’s territories in their account before we launched so that the minute they logged into the system it loaded exactly what was relevant to them. Also, the ease with which you can create tailored searches for your customer portfolio and be able to tailor the frequency of updates to suit your needs puts the power completely with the user.
Through the support of the Barbour ABI’s training team, we showed salespeople how to use the map to drill down into very specific locations, manipulate the view or data to tag the projects or customers that mattered to them, whether on a laptop or a mobile phone. That’s a different experience than having no option to amend or add to searches easily whilst out in the field. The new tool revolves around the user, meaning that their interaction daily should be far greater than previously. It’s a massive opportunity for them to create a sales support tool they can constantly update, and in return they get the best and most current market information to complement their local knowledge.
How does this ease of use allow you to manage opportunities more effectively?
One of the biggest benefits has come from the ability to track sales ambitions on both the micro and macro levels. The micro-level is the above-mentioned ability for our salespeople to build their individual, bespoke pipelines directly in the palm of their hands, and to have personalised reports sent to them each week. Those reports can be used alongside managers to have more enriched conversations around targets & priorities. Meanwhile, as a national business, we want to also use the system to take a macro-level approach to analyse wider national trends and create data pools to interrogate how we are performing in target areas, such as sectors that the government may have recently made large funding announcements in.
The quality of service from Barbour ABI stretches from executive level analysis of market conditions, down to the Research team helping our sales team source granular project information. The way Barbour ABI deliver information to the various appropriate levels of our business has helped us to make more informed decisions and improve our go-to market plans. In the medium term, we want to utilise the interactive user functionality even further through the tagging system to hone and qualify opportunities within the Barbour ABI data, in readiness to import into our CRM system at the right time.
What training have you had from your Client Manager that has improved the migration process?
The Barbour ABI service has extended so much further than the platform and the app. We’ve developed a unique rollout program for the new platform alongside our Client Managers (namely Kieran and Ian, who have been fantastic) which has been massively helpful for us, especially given the unprecedented experience of 2020. We’re at the point now where we’re excited to start rolling out at a much greater level within 2021 as the foundations are in place.
I’m constantly asking questions of Barbour ABI, as our teams have very specific needs given our place with the supply chain and project cycle. These challenges have been embraced, and we are working on solutions to accommodate them: that is the sign of a true partnership. I also recognise with such a varied team there will always be a real mix of those who thrive with new technology and those who need more support. The offer of individual support from Barbour ABI that we’ve had for every member of the team, no matter where they are on their digital journey, is hugely appreciated.
Ultimately, we want to keep exploring Barbour ABI to learn more and more. With the training on offer, the improvements made for the user around the ease of use of the platform, there’s so much more for us to discover, develop, and utilise.