In today’s unstable marketplace, when next month can be too late, getting the apps you need when you need them is critical. As this retailer discovered, one of the most significant benefits of Power Apps is how quickly Pragmatic Works was able to develop a highly useful, functioning app.
One of the nation’s largest cellular retailers, with over 770 stores in 41 states, needed to create a more cost-effective way for its field reps to both receive and follow-up with leads. To operate these locations, they were employing over 5,000 sales representatives, each responsible for following up with dozens of leads a day for phone upgrades.
Pragmatic Works came in as a Microsoft partner to create a multi-form Power Apps application, meaning it would be able to be used on any device or web, to simplify the customer’s lead distribution process. Among the top priorities for this project were the establishment of a custom application for campaign creation and lead assignment, and to provide the field reps or call center an automatically created and updated to-do list daily. As a sale happened, Power Automate would automatically create tasks for the user, specifically follow-ups based on time frames. It also allowed their sales team to load information on their previous sales history, and pinpoint exactly who to target based on last purchase made and needed upgrades since.
Several design considerations came into play with this custom application, including security using Azure Active Directory, core data living in Azure SQL DB, flows being used for user notifications and all data being stored in the cloud. It was imperative that the data be stored in Azure for speed, as the entire application depended on field reps being sent the most up-to-date notifications and tasks each day.
During this 5-week Power Apps engagement, Pragmatic Works worked to finalize the data model for storage of all leads and activities; built the ETL to load the database; created a campaign builder application; built a to-do application for field reps to generate alerts each day including leads; and trained the internal development staff on how to use the application. The custom campaign dashboard we created not only provided a summary of active campaigns and provided a set of filters to build a campaign, but also allowed a manager to pause a campaign if needed. A stored procedure loaded the campaign and active entities, and users were able to log all new activity in the application.
One of the main benefits of this Power Apps implementation and custom application, was that it allowed this retailer to dramatically reduce their Salesforce licenses, and therefore costs. They went from having to buy a Salesforce license for each field rep, over 5,000 people, to migrating most of their team onto Power Apps for a fraction of the cost. The Salesforce Unlimited plan averages $300 per user per month, while the Power Apps Unlimited plan costs $40 per user per month. Licenses for 5,000 field reps went from costing them $1,500,000 monthly to costing $200,000 monthly, a savings of over a million dollars each month.
Unlike a Salesforce, C#, or web application, which can take months to build and utilize, our Power Apps solution was built and ready to use in less than a month. Additionally, because the data from this application would be the most efficient in the cloud, Pragmatic Works put all the data in Azure. This resulted in the customer rolling out a brand-new Azure database to support this application.
After Pragmatic Works put this Power Apps application for this organization into production, the Covid-19 crisis hit North America and their CEO, who was very pleased with the results they were seeing, said all markets had to use it immediately. Currently, it has been rolled out to 1,500 field reps across every market, and they are working on getting it to every rep, a total of over 5,000 users. According to their Director of Business Intelligence and Process Management, “It was a great experience, and positioned us in a much better position to handle this crisis.” Having access to immediate and actionable data for their sales leads, combined with the cost savings from reducing their necessary Salesforce licenses, enabled the customer to hold stable in a tumultuous marketplace.
Pragmatic Works is heavily using Power Apps and the entire Power Platform to position ourselves ahead of our competitors. We are achieving this through running hackathons, participating in the App-in-a-Day program, and building custom accelerator tool kits with prebuilt applications in the cloud. Through our events and community involvement, we can generate hundreds of leads and bring the capabilities of Power Apps to a large and diverse audience. Our accelerator tool kits are adaptable for a wide variety of industries such as state and local government and manufacturing, and mostly focus on various types of inspections, including building and vehicle inspections.
In today’s unstable marketplace, when next month can be too late, getting the apps you need when you need them is critical. As this retailer discovered, one of the most significant benefits of Power Apps is how quickly Pragmatic Works was able to develop a highly useful, functioning app. Speed, combined with total integration with Office 365, Power Automate, and Microsoft Power BI, made it easy for them to get data into and out of SharePoint, or Excel, and any of the other 365 apps on which their business depends. With the incorporation of Power Automate, Power Apps allows developed apps to automatically respond to changes or updates to data on other platforms, another huge benefit for them. There was no doubt for Pragmatic Works that moving the customer onto Power Apps was the right decision to move their business forward. The rapid rollout of the application and words of praise from the organization reaffirms the success of this project.
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