With a relatively modest investment of 80 man-hours and $2,500, Knoxville, Tenn.–based pro dealer Tindell's has developed and launched the forward-thinking “Tindell's Customer Connection,” an IT program created in-house that provides Tindell's contractor customers with online access to daily invoices and monthly statements. Designed to save time and money while providing convenience to customers and Tindell's staff alike, the Tindell's Customer Connection sends customer invoices via e-mail at the end of every business day—no more waiting on mail, fax requests, or paperwork. Thirty-two percent of Tindell's customers have signed up for the system at no cost since it was launched in July 2002.
The program allows customers to view all invoices by account and/or job, reprint past invoices and statements, examine and sort purchases by product, look at up-to-date account balances, view and edit purchase order numbers for their own accounting, and check up on incentive points earned for the Tindell's travel program.
Tindell's sales reps have had great success promoting the program as an additional value-added service, and internally the company sees a cost savings on postage and a reduced administrative burden. “The greatest savings has come in the reduction of invoices that have to be mailed,” says Shawn Tindell, Tindell's vice president of information technology, who spearheaded the development of the program. “With over 30 percent of our invoice volume now being e-mailed to the customer nightly, this frees up a lot of time in having to print, sort, stuff, and mail invoices, especially at the end of the month.”
Excellence Award Honor Roll Special Report
- Honor Roll: Introduction
- Back to Basics - Honorable Mention, Showroom Design: McCabe Lumber
- Southern Comfort - Honorable Mention, Showroom Design: Reico Kitchen and Bath
- Inside Out - Honorable Mention, Marketing/Customer Service Program: Zeeland Lumber
- Customer Connection - Honorable Mention, IT/E-Commerce: Tindell's
- Coming to Order - Honorable Mention, Facility Design: Koopman Lumber