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Enigen Awarded Gold in the Mind Workplace Wellbeing Index

Mind Wellbeing Index Gold

We are extremely happy to announce that Enigen have been awarded Gold in Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Awards 2021-2022! Here’s what our Director of People & Culture, Erin Shaw, had to say about the award:

“I’m delighted that Enigen has been awarded Gold in Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Awards 2021/22! It’s a fantastic achievement, especially in only our second year of taking part! The index is a benchmark of best policy and practice in workplace wellbeing.

Our Gold award means we have successfully embedded mental health into our policies and practices, utilising a variety of approaches and demonstrating a long-term, in-depth commitment to employee mental health.

A big thank you to our mental health champions and colleagues at Enigen who continue to promote and support positive mental health in our workplace”

By participating in Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Index, we have made a commitment to supporting the mental wellbeing of our staff. Our participation gave us the opportunity to get feedback directly from our team about what we do well, but also importantly, the areas we can continue to focus and improve upon. Going forward, we will be reviewing the findings from our report and developing a plan for implementing the key recommendations.

Enigen Certified on Sales Automation (CRM & CPQ)

Oracle Sles Automation Certificate

We are happy to announce that we have formally re-certified for Oracle Sales Automation (CRM & CPQ)!

To achieve the overall certification, we needed to achieve a number of different certifications across a number of areas, including:

  • Pre sales
  • Implementation
  • Project Management
  • Support
  • Customer Success story with these products

We our very proud of our team for working hard to achieve this certification, and grateful for the support we’ve received from our friends at Oracle and fantastic clients along the way.

Oracle Sales Automation Certificate

If you’d like to learn more about our new certification, or how we can help your business to enable automated sales experiences with best-of-breed CRM/CPQ applications, please get in touch with us today.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2022

To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, which was May 9th-15th, we asked our newly appointed Mental Health & Wellbeing Champions three questions around why they wanted to join the scheme, why taking care of mental health at work is important, and how they’d support someone dealing with the issue that is this year’s focus issue for the awareness week; loneliness. You can hear their answers by watching the video.

Alongside initiatives like our Mental Health & Wellbeing Champions, we also partner with Mid and North East Essex Mind to ensure we are doing what we can to support not just our team’s mental health, but the work that Mind MNEE do in the local community.

No one deserves to struggle with mental health alone, and no one deserves to be lonely. Together we can tackle loneliness.

Visit https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week for more information, and don’t forget to watch the video below.

Top 5 challenges in your B2B online sales transition: #3 online sales with both B2B and B2C Ecommerce

Contributor: Ozan Yavasoglulari, Managing Consultant – eCommerce & Portals.

In my last blog I talked about the concept of ‘Simple in Behaviour, Complex in Use’, which you can read here. In this blog, #3, we’ll look at the nature of selling to both B2B and B2C audiences with your Commerce platform.

Almost all B2B interactions ultimately will have a B2C transaction. You sell to a business (retailers, wholesalers etc) who in turn, one way or another, uses the acquired goods or services to sell on to their consumers. For some B2B businesses, these ‘B2C transactions’ play no part in their operations (or their revenue) but for  others, it’s an integral part. Enter challenge #3 in this blog series – Providing online sales with both B2B and B2C ecommerce.

So, what’s the issue? One site for B2B and another for B2C. Well, imagine you’re a sole trader and you require a vehicle, let’s say a small pickup, specifically for heavy duty work with the ability to carry heavy goods, tools etc and cover long distances, hundreds of miles a day. Electric may work… but if you’re having to do hundreds of miles a day and time is important you don’t really want to be stopping every so often to recharge. You also need something for the weekend, a city run-around for meeting friends and going out. A car that is better for inner city travel, most likely electric. You ask yourself, should I look for something that can do both? What would be the downside? If it breaks down, then it will impact both my social and business activity. On the upside, one insurance, one road tax, on service, one repair. (Also, if you install a good sound system, it’ll be available for both your work and social commutes).

While it may be easy enough to assess the pros and cons for the above analogy, it’s not quite as simple when it comes to online B2B with B2C sales. Nonetheless, the question still stands – “should it be a hybrid solution or two disparate solutions”.

A hybrid approach may seem like a no brainer, if for nothing else it will reduce the overhead of maintaining two solutions. Maybe.

Firstly, let’s define what we mean by a hybrid solution. The physical world equivalent would be selling to both business and consumer accounts out of a single store location leveraging common resources, processes, hardware etc. When moving this into the digital space however, there are several requirements that need to be carefully considered.

 “At what point within the customer online journey will your users (trade vs consumer) need to identify themselves to the system (i.e., logging into their account)?”

For example, “…before they see any price”, or “…before they are allowed to see any products”, or “…. any time, however, the price may change once they log in.” etc.  This should also be considered with discount pricing and at what point it is displayed to each user type.

“Will your trade customers purchasing journey (i.e., by volume, buying in bulk, paying on account etc) differ greatly from that of your consumers?”

The system may natively handle funnelling of the checkout journey based on the user type (trade, consumer) while still maintaining a generally common browsing experience to allow a hybrid solution. However, the answer to this question will have an impact on the first question and both need to be considered in tandem. As a result, a hybrid solution here could get very complex.

“Will both trade and consumers be allowed to purchase from the same inventory or stock location?”

In the event the answer is ‘No’, would the hybrid model of maintaining a single store to handle such complexity be as streamlined as splitting the solution up into two disparate stores? Even if the system had the inbuilt capability to handle such complexity, what about the orchestration of orders/stock to and from external systems such as your Order Management System (OMS) or Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. In some cases, it may be simpler to handle this within separate online stores.

“Will the available currencies depend on any price groups or trade and consumer account types?”

In most cases, where there is such a requirement, the solution tends to move away from a hybrid to a multi-store or disparate approach. Mainly because of the limitations within the platform of choice.

Whether you go with a hybrid/single store or a disparate/multi-store solution, ultimately the aim is to provide both B2B and B2C customers the online experience they expect with as little compromise as possible. While tackling the above questions will help clarify key requirements in assisting you in your decision, they are by no means the definitive list. It’s also important that you clearly understand not only the limitations of, but also how the digital platform you choose (or have chosen) is constrained to dealing with a hybrid/disparate or single/multi store approach.

In most cases you may need to engage with, or leverage the experience and knowledge of your existing or new digital partner. Getting the approach right the first time can be the difference between success or failure.

– Oz

Stuck making a choice on which eCommerce platform you should consider for your B2B & B2C transactions? Reach out to me for a quick chat to gain some clarity, or contact our team at info@enigen.co.uk

Enigen Certified on Oracle B2B/B2C Service!

We are pleased to announce in March, we achieved the formal certification for Oracle B2B/B2C Service, one of only 8 partners globally who have achieved this and one in 6 in EMEA.

To achieve the overall certification, we needed to achieve a number of different certifications across a number of areas, including:

  • Architecture
  • Project Management
  • Product Expertise
  • Support

Along with requiring a number of customers who we have successfully implemented the technology with.

Enigen have a long history of working with Oracle B2B/B2C Service, but this certification is under Oracle’s new certification model.

We are proud of our team for working hard to achieve this certification, and grateful for the support we’ve received from our friends at Oracle and fantastic clients along the way. We look forward to continuing to deliver many more successful B2B/B2C Service implementations for our clients in the future.

If you’d like to learn more about our new certification, or how we can help your business to enable personalised Service experiences at every customer touchpoint, please get in touch with us today.

Get To Know Us : Mark Le Surf-Hall, Senior Project Manager

Contributors: Aja Cheal, Marketing Executive Apprentice and Mark Le Surf-Hall, Senior Project Manager

Our Get to Know Us series takes a look at the journeys of some of our team in their time here, to give you real insight into what it’s like to work with us. Recently I sat down with Mark Le Surf-Hall, Senior Project Manager, to talk about his time at Enigen so far.

Mark has been with us for just over 2 years and in his long career he has previously worked for a number of organisations in multiple roles, including but not limited to: Developer; Analyst; Tester; and Development Manager before moving into Project Management.

Mark: “What initially attracted me to project management was a suggestion from a mentor of mine at a previous company. I had gone through multiple roles and enjoyed them but was feeling quite restless, and project management was the first role I had where I really enjoyed the variety. Working with people, liaising with customers, and solving problems. In Project Management, very rarely is one day the same as another, though this may not be true for Project Managers in all organisations. I think in larger organisations, where there are huge project management teams, there’s a lot of specialised skills that are siloed. At Enigen you need Project Managers who are hands on. I’m not saying I need to take over or do other people’s jobs, but one needs to be able to understand and appreciate the roles and responsibilities not just within Enigen itself, but also of how Oracle works and how that impacts us and our customers. This can be tricky in itself because this is constantly evolving and changing, but it’s an important part of the job, and it’s worth it because it contributes to my number one focus: delivering results for our customers.”

“From a professional standpoint, I think because of my age and my time working in the industry, one thing I have brought is an understanding that a lot of the challenges we think are new to us now, have actually been around for years. I can also see that really, the level of tech understanding within a lot of organisations is the same as it was 20 years ago. Companies often aren’t tech savvy, and they don’t need to be. They’ve been focusing on their business, and they come to partners like Enigen in order to plug those gaps. What we do as an organisation is have a conversation and dialog with them, as it allows them to realise their business requirements, and understand how technology can support that. Although we use vastly different platforms and technologies to 20 years ago, and things have massively evolved over time, fundamentally it’s all about how we interact with the technology in order to meet business benefits and goals, and to deliver what the customer wants. So actually, not a lot has changed.”

“My favourite part of my role here? I love interacting with the people. I can genuinely say I’ve never felt more comfortable in an organisation. I think because of the passion that people have for the work they do, and the fairness there is across teams. I’ve not faced anything that has required getting over somebody’s ego or having to challenge someone on a personal basis. There will always be technical and business challenges, but the people are great so it’s a really good organisation to work with.”

“I like that at Enigen, we are an equal opportunity organisation. This is super important to me. I think it’s fantastic that we can bring in people right at entry level, so we are not looking for people to be fully formed and fully qualified. We are good at spotting potential and working alongside new starters so that they realise this potential. That’s something as a Project Manager you get involved in.”

“Because of the nature of the technology we work with, often there can be many different answers to the same problem, but some more effective than others at getting the job done. Therefore, it takes reaching out, experimenting, and exploring – it’s part of the role. Not everyone is expected to know everything, but Enigen ensures that people keep their skills up to date and are qualified which is also good for the individuals as they have some formal recognition of their capabilities.”

Want to know more about the people that make Enigen? Take a look at our Get To Know Us series, or or click here to Meet the Team.

 

Why Visibility Into Your Supply Chain Is So Critical

Supply Chain Visibility

Contributor: Vishnusurya Pinnamaraju, Senior Supply Chain Management Consultant

For large manufacturers and distributors, gaining a comprehensive understanding of everything that’s happening in your Supply Chain – individual components; sub-assemblies; and final products, in all their requisite stages of production and travel between supplier; your organisation; and your clients can be an incredibly daunting task. By using the right technology, you can bring visibility to your supply chain and ease these critical challenges.

WHAT IS SUPPLY CHAIN VISIBILTY?

Supply Chain Visibility is the ability to track the material available across the entire business. Whether that’s in your inventory, the manufacturing process, in transit from your suppliers, or products that are due to be sent to the Customer. Through Supply Chain Visibility, you gain an overall visibility of Supply/Demand in the organisation, which enables you to give your clients a much clearer view of order tracking, pipeline delays for highly configured products, overall consumption data, maintenance, and more. It’s the cornerstone of healthy supply chain operations in the industry, and when connected with front-end technology like eCommerce or CPQ, it can greatly improve Customer Experience (for more on how Supply Chain supports the Customer Experience, read my last blog!)

HOW CAN SUPPLY CHAIN VISIBILITY HELP ME?

When Supply Chain Visibility is done right, it can enable you to have:

  • Full visibility of available materials: With proper visibility of your supply chain, planners can know exactly how much of a given material to request for a specific order, ensuring there are no excesses of material in specific areas or shortages for other orders.
  • On-Time Shipments:  Having a comprehensive overview of your supply chain enables sales teams to forecast accurate shipping dates, and in turn can ensure customers’ delivery dates are honoured.
  • Readiness for disruptions: Supply Chain disruption is commonplace to a greater or lesser extent, and big disruption events like the Pandemic exposed the dangers that larger scale disruptions can pose to the supply chain. With proper Supply Chain Visibility businesses can be prepared for and overcome such disruptions.
  • Cost Savings: With proper planning, organisations can forecast the material exactly as per the requirement which can save warehouse space, manufacturing costs, and excess procurement related expenses.
  • Accurate reporting: Reports are the key to track and holistically view your supply chain situation. With good Supply Chain Visibility, teams can generate accurate reports which will give a more precise view of your supply chain status.

WHAT’S THE SOLUTION?

In my years’ of experience, I know first hand the only real way to gain true Supply Chain Visibility is through an all-in-one application that can integrate with front-and-back office processes, and my recommendation is Oracle SCM Cloud.

Oracle SCM Cloud is a fully integrated Supply Chain Management solution which covers the end-to-end supply chain business, starting from new product design through to shipment to the customer, including planning, manufacturing, and purchasing. The solution is recognized as the leader in Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Warehouse Management Systems and Transportation Management Systems.

BENEFITS OF ORACLE SCM:

All-in-one: Oracle Cloud has all the modules required to effectively manage your supply chain operations and gain true visibility, with tight integration. This is critical as it means all the required reports can be generated from a single ERP system with one integrated database for all business processes, and there is no need to implement any other ERP system or integrations.

Enhanced tracking and visibility: Oracle SCM Cloud covers all of the day-to-day processes of an effective supply chain, so businesses can eliminate manual processes and instead track all of the processes in one ERP platform, which will give greater visibility and tracking. Eliminating manual tasks also saves huge amounts of time that can be put to better use elsewhere.

Flexible reporting: In a more traditional ERP setup, users are often dependent on the IT/Analysis team to report on the health of the supply chain, which can lead to long lead times for simple reports. Oracle SCM Cloud enables users to simply develop the reports themselves with no lead time.

Latest technology: Stay up to date with latest features and technologies with continuous quarterly upgrades of the system and with the support of Artificial intelligence, Machine learning and IOT.

Great Customer Service: Oracle SCM Cloud works as a central hub for all of your customer’s information as all the modules are integrated with one another. With this central hub, users from different departments can work collaboratively on customer requirements and improve order delivery and accuracy. With this, sales team can focus on building the customer relationship instead of manual tracking or reporting of customer needs.

By investing in Supply Chain Visibility, businesses can build a 360-degree view of their supply chain that benefits both the organisation and your customers, simultaneously improving operational efficiency and customer experiences. To find out more reach out to me directly on LinkedIn, or get in touch with our team: info@enigen.co.uk

International Women’s Day 2022

International Women's Day 2022

This year’s theme for International Women’s Day was ‘Break The Bias’.

On the day, many of the women of Enigen got together in person in our Colchester office to celebrate being women working together in tech. Some of those same women volunteered to share their experience with bias and gender stereotyping in this video, helping to raise awareness about some of the challenges women face every day.

We’re proud to share our working environment with all kinds of women, and will strive to continue to make our workplace as inclusive and supportive as we can. Collectively, we can all Break The Bias.

Take a look at www.internationalwomensday.com for more information, and don’t forget to watch the video below.

Get Your Business Ready For CPQ

Contributor: Mike Bramble, Managing Consultant – Commercial Performance Applications

A few years ago, CPQ (Configure, Price and Quote) was an acronym that many organisations knew of but had on the ‘we’ll look at that later’ list. The benefits of CPQ have, however, been known for a long time.

A lot changes in IT in a few years and a lot certainly changes in the sales environment (usually at a much quicker rate). Reservations that organisations have previously had about moving core business and sales processes to the cloud can help explain why CPQ has not necessarily been high on the priority list (‘Hey, we’re still selling stuff aren’t we?’). If the last few years have taught us anything it’s that traditional business sales models have had to adapt to many different factors; changing customer expectations, and pandemics, to name a couple.

Has any of this changed for you? If we have learnt anything, it is that customers, partners, VARs, distributors, in fact anyone buying, now expect (and demand) a seamless, consistent, accurate and responsive sales process, all of which CPQ will help provide. Throw in the shift to the subscription economy and CPQ becomes more relevant than ever. If you still think that CPQ remains on the ‘later’ list, but be sure to bookmark this blog and come back to it in a few months’ time. Maybe you’ll have a different perspective!

If you’ve recognised this change, then let’s continue by looking at some key things you need to consider in preparation for bringing CPQ into your infrastructure and process:

  • Which CPQ is best for you? – You’ve probably noticed that I’m writing this blog as an employee of Enigen, who happen to be an Oracle Partner. Yes, Oracle CPQ Cloud is a fantastic product, and I would always recommend it for the right organisation but the decision as to what CPQ product is best for you must always be based on functionality fit, scalability, and flexibility. Talk to the vendor, talk to the implementers, talk to reference customers, view the demos – you’ll soon get a feeling as to what is right for your organisation. Have a look at independent evaluations of CPQ products as well (e.g. Gartner) to get a feel for where the product is, where it’s heading, and whether it’s a niche industry product. Done all that? Good, we can look at the bigger picture…
  • CPQ is a Transformative Platform – CPQ as an application will always sit somewhere in the middle of your sales infrastructure. It is not usually a stand-alone piece. This means that it will act as an inheritor of data, a master of its own CPQ specific data and a provider of quality data to other downstream systems. What does this actually mean in project terms? Well, at the very least it should make you think about the other applications that CPQ will integrate with. Is your CRM data good enough for CPQ to use (and avoid manual input of customer information)? Is your Order Management application going to cope with any anticipated increase in order volumes? Are you able to enhance your sales processes in CPQ with additional data? The list of questions goes on of course, but I’m sure you’ve realised by now that your CPQ project is not just about CPQ! You will need to consider if other applications need attention as well. If they do, you’ve got a bigger project to consider. Do not, however, let that be a blocker to your goal of process improvement and innovation.
  • Know CPQ’s Boundaries – It’s baked into the name, Configure, Price & Quote. It’s headline capabilities are to configure things you sell, to price those things, and to quote for those things you are selling. OK, so that’s pretty much the CPQ 101 done, and of course, there are many, many nuances and use cases in each of those headlines, but what does it really mean? From my perspective it means that you should configure the application to bring your new improved sales processes to reality but within the boundaries of C, P and Q. What a Company sells, and how it sells it, is generally one of the key USP’s at their disposal. So by all means bring that to life in a flexible platform (like Oracle CPQ Cloud), but don’t try to make CPQ something it’s not. Does it have CRM capabilities? No. Does it do Order or Inventory Management? No. There are much better applications for that (CRM and Order Management would clearly be the answer here!) and all of that additional functionality is but an integration or two away. But by using the right application/platform for the right processes, and using CPQ for what it’s best at, you maximise your investment and efficiencies.
  • Be Objective About What You Do Now – ‘If it ain’t working…’ – I’ll bet that a lot of IT projects start with the good intention of looking at/reviewing current process and improving them. How often do those good intentions get diluted as the project progresses, with the tendency to re-implement sub-optimal processes due to budget, time, or other constraints? Well, implementing CPQ will be no different if you don’t plan carefully, and incorporate vital elements like strong project and change management. But CPQ is a powerful platform that will allow you to implement those desired sales process improvements quickly and effectively, so don’t lose sight of the benefits. And the ROI could be much quicker than you think. Take this golden opportunity to streamline what you do and how you do it.
  • Look to the Future – Sales processes change, people change. CPQ is a long-term investment in your sales processes. Getting up and running with a CPQ implementation will give you what you need now, but have you thought about the future? How will you be selling in one year, three years’, five years’ time? Will you need better integrations to your back-office or fulfilment applications? Will you need to integrate to an online portal? There are many more questions to challenge yourself with, but make sure you build CPQ for day one with a keen eye on the future.
  • Get the Right Implementation Partner on Board – CPQ is transformational – There I’ve said it again! You need to be confident that your implementation partner can deliver on your vision. They should have the experience and breadth of CPQ knowledge, a solid understanding of your industry, and a desire to understand your business and processes to be able to make that vision real.

I hope that’s enough to get you thinking about CPQ and how to approach it. In a later blog, I’ll look at some core features of CPQ you need to know about and how they will help you.

If you’d like to hear more from me, I appeared recently on our partner Zilliant’s podcast series B2B Reimagined, talking in-depth about how CPQ and Price Optimisation are a perfect match for manufacturers. You can check that out here. Be sure to reach out to myself or my team directly if you have questions about CPQ. You can reach me on LinkedIn or get in touch with our team at info@enigen.co.uk.

– Mike

A Perfect Match: CPQ + Price Optimisation for Manufacturers

Contributors: Mike Bramble (Enigen), Lindsay Duran (Zilliant)

Recently, our very own Mike Bramble sat down with Lindsay Duran, host of our partner Zilliant’s ‘B2B Reimagined’ podcast, and discussed how CPQ and price optimisation are the perfect match for Manufacturers.

Customers want the freedom and flexibility to choose the right product to meet their needs. They want a fair price, and they want a hassle-free transaction. These buyer asperations have not only existed before eCommerce, but they also predate even the computer.

Increased complexity, spurred by rapid market changes, have made these specific customer requirements more difficult to meet. Luckily, advances in technology and data utility hold the potential to flip that framing on it’s head.

Mike is our Managing Consultant for Commercial Performance Applications here at Enigen. His incredible depth in the field (“I’m afraid CPQ is very much in my blood”) has proved integral in reframing the quote-to-cash process around those aforementioned fundamentals.

Mike and Lindsay discussed how CPQ systems are unique in that they deliver equal value to both manufacturers and their downstream distributor or direct consumer customers. They allow customers to tailor products and services to their exact specifications, while empowering sales reps to turn around timely quotes with a higher likelihood of closing. And when paired with the right price optimization solution, CPQ can quickly deliver mutually agreeable, market-aligned prices for sellers and buyers.

“CPQ acts as a bit of a logic master in these areas to create a single source of truth for that sales process,” Mike explained. “It provides guidance for the user and technical accuracy in the output, so they can price those goods knowing that correct pricing rules have been applied and they can quote them the right information. It’s about accuracy to avoid rework and delays in getting a quote to a customer.”

Listen to the podcast below, or get in touch with us at mailto:info@enigen.co.uk to learn more