Going forward, Sharon anticipates using Buzzy more and more.
"It’s one of these tools with which you can literally create stuff on the fly. So if I’ve got an idea I just implement it as it’s so easy to use. The tracking of leave and overtime I thought up in a day. I was creating timesheets and it dawned on me that instead of manually creating timesheets and sending to accounts, I could just put it in Buzzy and do it at the click of a button."
Candid Baby: Remote work, managed
Instant visibility managing 100+ remote sales reps with Buzzy
"I’m just astounded that more people aren’t using Buzzy. We work with a lot of other importers and distributors and it blows my mind that they spend millions on getting tools developed. Buzzy is fast to deploy, cost-effective and scales effortlessly. It’s unlimited in terms of the number of people I can add, and has allowed my business to leap forward."
Sharon Van Wyk, Sales Manager, Candid Baby
Having such a large team of in-house and outsourced agents was difficult to manage. As sales manager Sharon Van Wyk explains, there was "no visibility" of what the reps were actually seeing when they made store visits.
"We tried various reporting tools but it became very labour intensive for me to try to pull it all together. I would get literally 500 emails a day from 500 stores visits done by various agents. Marketing would want to know how many of those stores had a particular product stand, and the only way for me to find out was to go through all 500 emails looking for photos. It was just an absolute nightmare," Sharon says.
Candid Baby’s two directors went to Cologne, Germany to attend Kind + Jugend, the leading trade fair for infants' and children's products. While meeting with some representatives from an Australian baby product manufacturer, they learned about Buzzy.
After being taken through a demo of how Buzzy works, Sharon realised it was the perfect solution and signed up straight away.
"It became my project to roll out - it’s such a simple tool but really incredible - cost effective and very simple," Sharon says.
Candid Baby is an importer and distributor of baby products to retailers in sub-Saharan Africa. Based in South Africa, it was founded over 25 years ago and sells into South Africa and neighbouring countries including Namibia, Zambia, Botswana, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. Candid Baby employs around 20 full-time staff and has hundreds of field-based agents and sales reps throughout its markets.
Sharon played with Buzzy for about a month so she understood the tool and all its capabilities. "Adam and his team at Buzzy were absolutely amazing in offering me support despite the time difference [between South Africa and Australia]. They set up a specific Buzz just for me to communicate with them, and they were open to listening to all my suggestions," Sharon says.
Deploying Buzzy was "super quick". All staff needed to do was install the Buzzy app on their mobiles. Sharon set up Buzzes for training documents and order forms, giving staff access to all in-house data wherever they are. If they’re in a store and need to carry out training, all the documents are at their fingertips. There’s also a Buzz for tracking leave and overtime, and Buzzes can be set up for special promotions "in five minutes".
Buzzy has given Sharon full visibility over her team. Their job is also easier, with reporting made much more uniform. "The biggest thing is the ease with which I can do daily store audits. Location tagging lets me check that everyone is where they’re supposed to be. Users feed the data in from all the stores they visit, and I can then pull it into a simple Excel spreadsheet and literally audit everything in-store from Buzzy," Sharon explains.
Buzzy has hugely cut admin time. Sharon can track staff performance in just fifteen minutes a week and see everyone’s stats at a glance. A monthly sales report that used to take a week of sifting through emails is now done within a day.
"Buzzy has changed how I do my job and freed up time for me to focus on other things. Long term it’s helping grow our business as we’ve got more space to move and think."
Candid Baby continues to expand its use of Buzzy. The Buzzy team has also added some special features to suit Candid Baby’s specific needs. The company’s agents often have to operate in areas with poor network coverage. Previously they would carry out a store audit but be unable to upload the data. So Buzzy created an offline mode, allowing data to be stored and uploaded as soon as network coverage allowed.
Similarly, uploading large images was difficult for some agents. Buzzy added an image resizing feature, so in slow connectivity areas an image could be made smaller before uploading.