How CIMCO Refrigeration uses Zoho to improve every metric, everywhere.

"Sales have gone up 20% since starting to use Zoho but beyond that, employees learn faster and stay longer and leads are responding better to our sales approach."

David Fauser, Director of Sales CIMCO - Toromont

The company

When it comes to making sales, speed is the name of the game. This becomes increasingly important as sales grow in volume and processes grow in complexity. This is an issue that CIMCO decided to tackle head on by rooting their sales process on Zoho CRM.

CIMCO is a division of Toromont focused on estimating, designing, building, selling, and supporting industrial refrigeration systems. CIMCO started with Zoho CRM to centralize their sales operations, but have since begun using Zoho Analytics and Zoho Creator.

David Fauser, Director of Sales for CIMCO, has been involved with improving sales processes and employee retention by creating efficient business processes and improving visibility into business data. CIMCO had needs that could only be solved with a custom built solution. These solutions tend to come with a high price point and heavy technical requirements, but CIMCO has been able to build a customized and automated system with several Zoho tools. Though being an established brand lends strength to many processes, it also means that CIMCO had decades of processes to centralize and automate.

The challenge

CIMCO needed to give their sales system a solid foundation that could support multiple different sales processes. CIMCO has different sales funnels for different kinds of customers: one for selling new products and one focused on servicing existing ones. This requires one database meant for fresh leads and one for a more account management-based approach. This is important not only to improve sales and customer retention, but also to improve employee onboarding and experience. When a company doesn't have an organized sales process and database, it is that much harder for incoming sales associates to learn how best to do their jobs.

Before moving onto Zoho CRM, there was no visibility to what was happening with customers beyond results, meaning they could not analyze and improve huge swaths of their process. They had been working in Act! but came to the realization that it was not going to scale with them. As they grew and expanded, they needed a system that connected natively so they didn't have to restructure their processes at every stage of growth.

Since CIMCO has one hundred and fifty sales representatives all across North America, this complexity rippled out. Different sales representatives had different methods and they weren't all going into one office where they could bridge any communication gaps. With the complexity of their workflow and the scope of their workforce, CIMCO knew they needed a custom estimating solution. They were also worried about low adoption rates for CRM systems, so they needed a way to manage all of these systems while making it as easy as possible for users to learn the software. Looking at the options on the market, it seemed that the only scalable options came with a hefty price tag if they wanted to customize the system to their particular needs.

The solution

In 2018, CIMCO made the move to Zoho CRM. Using a mix of centralization, automation, and integration, CIMCO has been able to create a seamless sales process that is flexible enough to handle various sales needs. By centralizing their processes using Zoho tools, CIMCO also built agility into their business.

CRM has been built out to fully manage opportunities throughout their pipeline by automating as many of the intermediate steps as possible. Since sales representatives don't have to spend their time figuring out who they need to contact or what the next step is, they can spend more time focusing on interacting with the customer. The automation allows employees to prioritize high-value work while minimizing time wasted on smaller, less important tasks.

Beyond sales, CIMCO also needed a solution to manage non-customer relationships, including media. With the help of a Zoho partner, CIMCO has created three custom applications in Creator, Zoho's low-code application builder. These are created to not only make CIMCO's processes more efficient, but also to require as little IT intervention as possible. CIMCO brought on a Zoho partner to help with implementation and maintenance so they could get their problems solved with as little touch on their part as possible.

Now that the heavy lifting of building those applications is done, Fauser is able to handle small updates and fixes on his own and can bring the partner in when larger structural changes need to be made. And thankfully, they're always quick to implement. This means that CIMCO can save time and money when something small needs to be done while still getting the help they need for their fully custom solution.

Now, automation within CRM facilitates moving opportunities through the pipeline, Creator facilitates multiple processes for media management as well as forecasting and estimating, and these tools integrate with PandaDoc to create, revise, and sign contracts. By connecting all of these tools, CIMCO has increased visibility into all of their business processes while cutting down on the amount of time it takes to create reports in CRM. "I'm not an IT person but I can quite easily make whatever chart or graph that I want to help me understand or diagnose what's going on," said Fauser.

This increase in visibility improves the user experience for both CIMCO's customers and employees. Fauser said, "It costs several hundred thousand dollars to have the wrong hire, or to have somebody leave us, so the idea is once you're wearing the sweater, you're on the team and we want to keep you here. As long as somebody has the will, then we will do what we can to try to make sure they're successful." In order to offer the support their employees need, CIMCO needed to be able to break down numbers specific to each sales person and account and then use those numbers to create customized coaching plans.

Reports can tell management where in the pipeline is the weakest, what an individual rep needs to improve, and where their overall system needs work. Once they have figured out these pain points, they can communicate them directly to sales people to cut down on frustration and improve their sales culture as a whole. This has lead to better customer experiences and improved training for employees.

Benefits and ROI

"Zoho has impacted every metric, everywhere," said Fauser. While dealing with changes from the COVID-19 pandemic, CIMCO has seen massive shifts in the market and in work processes, as we all have, but they've had no trouble adapting thanks to the flexible and efficient business process they had set up. Since starting with Zoho, sales have gone up 20% and CIMCO has maintained their high quality standards for sales throughout the pandemic.

CIMCO has managed to not only continue on through their transition to Zoho, but make their processes stronger and easier to learn. "Employees learn faster and stay longer and leads are responding better to our sales approach," said Fauser.

Using data and analytics, CIMCO was able to improve their training and coaching. Now, when someone isn't getting something right away, they can use analytics to help get them back on track. Without a CRM in place, they would still be relying on addressing problems that bubble up to the top. With CRM, they can see the issues right as they start.

By centralizing their data, CIMCO created new ways to view and utilize that data to address problems sooner. The effects of this extend beyond sales into every part of the company.

Looking forward

In the coming year, CIMCO is looking to connect Zoho to even more work processes. Using SAP as their field service management software, Fauser hopes to be able to bring field service data into CIMCO's Zoho tools.

From the marketing perspective, Fauser is excited to grow with Zoho's tools. They also hope to push the company forward in general using Analytics to help with forecasting. They've already seen success is building out tools to help managers understand their data better, so now they're looking to new ways to improve access to information and metrics.