Sasha Banks-Louie, Oracle
The last time you bought a car, did you stop to think about how it got to the local dealership? Or how a package you ordered from overseas got to your doorstep? Or how the frozen food you ate last night moved from factory to store shelf? I didn’t think so.
Coordinating all of those shipments and deliveries is part of a $1 trillion-plus global logistics industry, one in which South Korea’s CJ Logistics is a fast-rising player, providing one-stop parcel, transportation, forwarding, project management, and other logistics services.
The 89-year-old company, which posted 30% revenue growth in 2018 and has completed 10 acquisitions over the last seven years, needed to find an effective way to help its 2,000 sales reps manage and report their deals amid hundreds of conflicting processes and thousands of duplicate account records.
With so many acquisitions, the need to consolidate its sales data became imminent. Up until a year ago, the company’s reps found it difficult to search for account records in spreadsheets, sift through customer invoices in myriad inherited enterprise resource planning systems, and pull in credit ratings from outside agencies, says Yong-Man Kim, a CJ Logistics general manager.
“It could take a couple of days before reps could build their sales reports, or identify which customer contracts were up for renewal, or know when to upsell a new service,” Kim says.
In a pilot project started in February 2018, the company’s Seoul-based sales reps began using Oracle Sales Cloud to help them consolidate their sales data and manage their accounts. With real-time access to all of the data about their customers, leads, and deals, “reps are now able to produce sales and pipeline reports for themselves and executives within a day,” Kim says.
CJ Logistics managers are also using the cloud software to track the status of their reps’ deals, close rates, and win/loss ratios, and then offer them guidance on how to improve their conversions, he says.
The company is using Oracle Java Cloud Service to capture data from its legacy ERP systems and third-party applications and present the data in Oracle Sales Cloud. This integration gives sales reps immediate access to customers’ service usage histories, contract terms, and credit ratings, without having to hunt for information, compile it into a spreadsheet, and then turn around and build a report.
“This is just a first step for the sales automation,” Kim says. “We’re going to build an environment where sales reps can immediately search and review our customers’ information in order to build sales strategies.”
One of CJ Logistics’ most innovative domestic businesses is “Senior Parcel Delivery” for which more than 1,400 employees age 60 and older deliver packages within their own apartment complexes. Since the company started the service in 2013, seniors have delivered more than 20 million packages across South Korea.
CJ Logistics is also looking to enter new overseas markets. Already, it plans to extend Oracle Sales Cloud to thousands more of its sales reps at 266 branches in 37 countries in Southeast Asia, Latin America, Europe, and elsewhere.
“We want to be among the top five logistics companies in the world by 2020,” says Hee-Jae Lee, chief strategy officer of CJ Logistics, whose revenue of 9.22 trillion won (about US$8 billion) last fiscal year put it at about 20th globally. But to move in that direction, communications between the company’s head office in Seoul and each of its foreign subsidiaries need to be fast and effective. Says Lee: “Oracle Sales Cloud is an essential element to help us connect our companies, connect to our people, and help us reach our goals.”