Electronic Components Company was a company I helped build to a high year of sales of $1 million dollars and that with just 5 employees. Hired because of my ability to sell and knowledge of the parts themselves, I soon had a website up and giving the customers the ability to search not only our inventory but the inventory of the world. This was in 1999. When pay-per-click came along I was one of the first to use manufacturer part numbers as keywords, generating thousands of percent ROI. This was all done with the software I will describe the major points of below. Overall I reduced payroll by thousands of hours per year. Unfortunately, this company did not survive the 2009 recession and no longer exists.
- From basic website, wrote custom shopping cart software allowing site visitors to search all known distributors inventories for a circuit board level electronic component and add the amount needed to a list they could later submit as one item. This software also allowed me to submit 600,000 part numbers to Google as pages on my website and 70,000 on my pay-per-click campaign when that service came to life and clicks could cost $.05.
- Matched incoming requests to own inventory and notified sales department via email of customer request.
- After interfacing with customers, salesperson was able to assign buyer for parts not in inventory. Buyer given all details including customer’s desired purchase price.
- Buyer able to create custom input list using software I wrote and data already collected. This input list was fed into the website of another company that hosted the inventories of over 2000 suppliers (over 100 million unique part numbers). That company would send an email to us for each supplier on the list that had the requested part in stock. My software then read those emails, populated the buyers database with the information available (e.g. how many they have, exact part number, sometimes price). After collecting the data software then sent an email to our sales contact at the company (if we had one). While other companies would send an email saying “Please check stock,” I sent an email saying “You have this part in stock and we might want to buy it!” Finally, that email was able to be changed based on certain variables available to the buyer (i.e. our offer price for the part, whether we need a quote only or are ready to buy if offer accepted, etc.)
- Using data already recorded, buyer able to update offers in the database with just a couple of clicks. Every time a price is entered into the system the salesperson for the order is notified of the price, the company, and all the other specifics for the part. For suppliers who need to be contacted manually, buyer has all the details in front of them so at most they might have to change the price and quantity or that the stock is gone.
- Salesperson is now able to offer parts to customer. Software produces custom “product acquisition form” under the guise of the buyer confirming product was as ordered. At the same time buyer was signing agreement the parts would not be returnable unless proven to be defective by an independent test lab.
- When salesperson received order from customer, it was entered into the system. If it was a new customer accounting was notified. If it was an existing customer, credit limit was checked and if allowed purchasing was notified to buy parts. Software of course generated the purchase order and emailed the supplier contact.
- If our supplier required C.O.D. the software would notify accounting to prepare a check and give it to receiving. When the parts were received, the receiver would put the amount on the check and enter it into the system where it was deducted from the online checkbook which didn’t matter until now. Owner was notified funds were spent.
- Due to existence of online checkbook, all bookkeeping for the company (including payroll) was handled by an independent contractor who came twice a month.
- When parts were received, salesperson at supplier was notified. This was done to earn loyalty from the salesperson due to an industry standard of only paying commission on sales when the order had shipped an been accepted. Our salesperson was also notified. If it was a multiple part order and all parts were now received, or, if it was a one part order, salesperson was notified order ready to ship so they could notify our customer (if necessary).
- If order was credit card or COD invoice prepared and shipped with the order. If net terms the invoice was mailed. In all cases a custom packing slip was included with each order. If order was shipping out of the country additional copies of the invoice were created to satisfy customs. All invoices and packing slips contained the tracking number of the order or a signature if will call or local delivery.
- On credit card orders, a set amount of time after card was charged (set by clearing house), the proper amount was entered into the online checkbook (including a deduction for fees).
- For COD and net orders, an expected due date for payment, based on terms, shipping method and time, was recorded in a database. This allowed a daily report to be generated and allowed for easy bill collecting.
- Once payment was received, the database was updated with check number and amount. Owner was notified money was received and checkbook updated to reflect deposit.
- Accounts payable was managed by software as well. On twice monthly visits accountant would bring accounts payables and data (including mail date to insure paid on time but not early) would be entered into database. Bills were paid as their mail dates came due. All checks were signed, dated, and filed by check number twice monthly.
- Every part of the above was available to management anywhere they could get to the internet. Each department could get to their individual jobs online as well, which allowed for remote sales and purchasing people.
If I’ve piqued your interest in me or my abilities, why not drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org?