HP Case Study
In order to further progress and increase profitability in his company Hewlett Packard, CEO Lew Platt realized in 1996 that they needed to look into new market and organizational opportunities while reducing sales and support costs. In order to accomplish these goals Platt realized that HP would need to alter their current selling approach, shifting from being industry focused to being focused on larger “enterprise” customers. Platt realized that their important customers were becoming value content providers such as Anderson Consulting, and solution providers SAP and Oracle. In order to start focusing on these customers there would need to be a reorganization of HP’s traditional sales approach. However since HP had already implemented major structural changes in the past it was necessary to deem that another overhaul would be more beneficial than detrimental to the future long-term success of the company. Restructuring of an organization had great impact on the company culture and can have detrimental effects of employee behavior. Platt asked Manuel Diaz, head of Worldwide Sales for HP’s Computer Systems Organization to look into the topic of new opportunities and relationship management. After Diaz realized that changing HP’s current relationship management and selling techniques could have severe consequences on the livelihood of HP he turned to Robert Dudley for help. Dudley was a senior partner at Leap consulting who Diaz brought in to audit HP’s current customer management approach. With a detailed and careful analysis Dudley would be able to understand where HP’s weakness lay and where they could advance on new opportunities. He also would be able to discover how HP would have to alter their current sales strategies to fix these weaknesses and embark on these new opportunities. The entire future success, growth, and potential of HP relied on the results of Dudley’s finding and being able to correctly interpret and utilize the information.
After conducting his audit Dudley was able to more clearly understand HP’s current practices and what organizational changes need to take place. Dudley found that HP’s strength, as they already predicted was that they have strong knowledge and understanding of the marketplace in which they compete. First Dudley conducted a large customer sales process audit from which he discovered that HP had four project types to focus on; repurchase, replacement, expansion, and innovation projects. Repurchase, replacement, and expansion projects fell under the category of infrastructure sales opportunities while innovation projects fell under the category of opportunistic sales opportunities. He also found that HP’s current strategy did not optimize the total sales opportunity of the customer and that the sales teams felt they were being stretched to capacity. Dudley then conducted an industry practice sales audit. This audit revealed that the HP customers were more satisfied with HP’s current attempt to be more focused on their customers and manage relationships. However the audit also revealed that the HP employees were being drained by managing these relationships and were creating new opportunities only if their livelihood depended on it. The overall audit led to the recommendation that HP must change their migration path. While HP did well at capturing downstream business and increasing their midstream, business their migration strategy was weak and was incurring large costs. Dudley recommended that HP manage their upstream business by entering accounts at multiple levels with sales approaches tailored to the different types of sales opportunities. The only way he said they could optimize their return on sales effort would be to match sales resources to sales opportunities and to sell concepts to senior executives on the premise that HP could deliver on their promises and promote these confidently.
There are key aspects that make successful sales person and a...
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