Co-construction and training: how to successfully integrate Salesforce at an internationally renowned group.

Franck Reynard

Franck Reynard

With some 19,000 employees –Creators of Convivialité– across more than 180 countries, Pernod Ricard is currently the world’s second largest seller of spirits. Fully committed to its digital transformation, the company has been carrying out a complex and ambitious transformation project since 2020, led by the group’s Transformation Office, which handles all in-house transformation projects.

Franck Reynard, Lead Project Manager at Pernod Ricard’s Transformation Office, tells us all about this unprecedented change project and the activities being carried out with ISDI to train its teams. In this exclusive interview, he explains the key stages of this change management project carried out in recent months.

1. Determining the objectives and scope of the change

“The Pernod Ricard Group, which I have been a part of for 14 years, has set out to accelerate its digital transformation,” confirms Franck. “Why change? To optimize our revenue growth of course, but also to take an in-depth look at our business model by focusing on data-driven technology initiatives.”

“As the global leader of this project, we are tasked with implementing a new solutionSalesforce’s Consumer Goods Cloud – in record time, with the aim of harnessing data to improve business management and create an operational performance model. This initiative should ultimately have an impact on many of the companies operating in the market and the brand owners of the group, which currently has more than 300 brands.”

2. Identifying our SFA target and the governance to be adopted

“Back in 2020, our first task was to define our vision and what we expected from this SFA (Sales Force Automation) project. This SFA solution was built jointly with all stakeholders, from industry decision-makers, i.e. business experts, right through to the Management Committee.”

“In this project we interact with many stakeholders. We therefore had to define a target that all teams would be happy with, thus requiring us to get the entire hierarchy involved through a large number of workshops. We then explored the governance dimension by including the sponsors and our CEO in the decision-making process. It is essential for the initiative to be led and steered by management.”

We turned to ISDI to organise an intra-company training course at our facilities. This training provided us with a useful overview of the Salesforce Consumer Goods Cloud

3. Connecting with business reality

“From the start of 2021, and after defining our global strategy, we began to work towards the solution. We had to define our expectations for the large retail and hospitality (Cafés/Hotels/Restaurants – CHR) sectors. Over the course of four to five months, we delved into process granularity to ensure efficient processes and design our IT architecture, integrating Salesforce’s Consumer Goods Cloud in particular.”

“Knowing that we work in AGILE methodology, we launched an initial pilot project with the large retail and Cash and Carry teams (wholesalers), which we deployed across the entire sales force. We then optimized the solution through successive releases in response to requests for development, troubleshooting, etc. Currently, the goal is to extend this pilot project to other distribution channels, such as the restaurant sector.”

4. Creating a core model that can be implemented throughout the group

“As I mentioned earlier, one of the key objectives of this change project was to create an operational performance model, with uniform processes and a well-defined user journey, for each distribution channel (Large Retail, Cash and Carry, Cava Producers, Cafés, Hotels and Restaurants, Prestige Establishments) and for each of our sector managers.”

“As Pernod Ricard is the world leader in this type of project, we are in charge of creating a ‘core model’, which we are building alongside our Spanish partners on the On-Trade side. National or regional specificities will be added to this core model as and when needed down the line. Ultimately, our goal was to genuinely simplify our operating methods to eliminate anything too time-consuming and create a break with the past.”

Consumer Goods Cloud is a great way to save time on previously time-consuming tasks and spend more time on the operational side

5. Training employees in the solution

“We needed to rapidly gain expertise in Salesforce’s CG Cloud, to create a real break from our previous SFA. We needed our team to get up to speed with the solution as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

“To succeed, we followed Salesforce’s recommendation and turned to ISDI, which organised an intra-company training course for our IT team at our facilities in Marseilles. Our aim was to build additional team spirit in the digital transformation and enable a uniform growth of competencies.”

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6. That extra little something: using an official Salesforce partner

“We received positive feedback from our team about the training organised by ISDI. They were very happy with their trainer and how the solution was framed. The training also gave us an overview of the solution’s functionalities and our future needs, in terms of both training and development. It so happens that because of our mature market profile, we will be making a lot of development requests to Salesforce. One of our objectives is therefore to challenge Salesforce as much as possible to get us more and more involved in the solution.”

“This training has provided us with an overview of the functionality, configuration and management of the Salesforce Consumer Goods Cloud and given us a clearer understanding of how it is built. This was essential for planning how the solution would be used within Pernod Ricard down the line.”

Pernod Ricard y Salesforce: un despliegue progresivo y estratégico

“Having now developed our core model, we intend to implement it in several regions and countries, though not necessarily in all of them. Our priority is to target the most mature markets. Salesforce, through CG Cloud, will have to demonstrate that its cloud solution brings RoI to the Pernod Ricard Group through process simplification and other benefits. We will therefore be keeping a close eye on this return on investment in the coming years.”

Consejo final de expertos: anticipar la dimensión de cambio del proyecto sin contratiempos

“Supporting the initiative internally (by the CEO and management team) and preparing well for the change part are two absolutely essential points for this type of project. The aims of this digital transformation must be communicated to all teams and explained individually to each and every member. No one must be left on the sidelines, and support for the change must be personalized from end to end: this is the sine qua non for engaging employees and getting them on board.”

The aims of the digital transformation must be communicated to all teams. Let nobody be left on the sidelines

“Hence the importance of organising meetings ahead of the implementation phase, training teams in the solution and supporting them over time. To achieve this, we have six weeks of support from sales managers and from internal and external HR experts. This has enabled us to evaluate the extent to which the teams’ skills in the solution have improved, break down any resistance and ensure the success of the project.”

“Why is it essential to provide this kind of support for change? Because the tool will never replace the commercial relationship or the relationship with the customer: Consumer Goods Cloud is a great way to save time on previously time-consuming tasks and spend more time on the operational side. It is a way to spend more time with our consumers and distributors and thus strengthen relationships. In other words, it’s not really the business culture of our teams that’s changing, or even their goals, it’s the way they achieve them.”

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