Business challenge

“We sell our products through several channels. The conventional channel we use covers buffets, local stores and supermarkets across the country. When doing so, we also do promotions, activities, introductions, commercials etc.,” explains Selcuk Ergul, … . “Our field sales teams visit our customers, such as Migros and Carrefour, and sign marketing campaign contracts to give certain discounts for a specific time frame. For example, they agree on product placement in the supermarkets for 10 days with a promotion in exchange extra %20 discount on the products sold during the campaign.”

He continues adding: “There are these terms we use for this type of activities; ‘on-ticket’ and ‘off-ticket’. Let us assume we signed a contract with a supermarket, promising that we are going to give them X% discount on a product over 10 days. This discount is reflected on the invoice we send as per the contract, and we call this ‘on-ticket’. If we do not reflect the discount on the invoice and ask the supermarket to send an invoice to cover the discount on the agreement, we call it ‘off-ticket’. We have both types of contracts, and sometimes a contract can include both on and off tickets. It becomes even more complicated when we invoice to the supermarket based on consumer spending instead of invoicing them upfront.”

Ergul recalls, “All this process was paper-based, and there was no standard approval process. We were not able to control if the discounts agreed with the customers were above the strategically defined thresholds or if we had exceeded our marketing budget. The data was entered manually in a couple of systems, and we could see all the data a week later. That meant we didn’t have any chance to step-in instantly if something requires attention.”

Digital transformation story

All these paper and Excel-based processes left PepsiCo at greater vulnerability to potential budgeting errors, which encouraged the company to begin looking for a more standardised, automated strategy.

“We had to improve this process to help business units achieve control over their budgets,” notes Selcuk Ergul. “One significant need was monitoring and proactively managing the marketing campaign budget. We had to make sure that we’re spending the money on the right campaigns.”

We had some other options other than using the PaperWorkBPM platform”, explains Ergul. “We could make improvements on Oracle ERP that we already use. Or we could add new functionalities to our PepPocket field sale software. These two platforms are also open to custom developments. Of course, we had to find answers to why we should or shouldn’t use the systems we already have for this purpose. They are excellent platforms, after all. We consulted the PepsiCo IT teams in other countries and global IT to evaluate the options we had. Global IT recommended a system that is already in use in some countries for the same purpose. Still, the proposed budget required for that system was enormous compared to the budget we had.”

Ergul continues, adding: “When we compared these platforms’ functionalities, budget requirements and project timelines, PaperWorkBPM was the clear winner. As the PaperWorkBPM team convinced us that they could deliver the solution within our timeframe and budget, which was about %5 of what global IT proposed for the implementation of the existing platform, we decided to work with them.”

“We teamed up with the business analysts of PepsiCo for requirement gathering,” explains Canan Unverdi, senior project manager for PaperWorkBPM. “Once the objectives are defined, we started with involving business units on the design of the solution to understand the expectations better. We then outlined the user interfaces and the workflows within the process and documented them. The expected solution had to integrate with the local HR system, electronic invoice system, Oracle ERP, and PepPocket field sale system. So, we also created a system architecture document for technical teams.”

“We deployed the solution on the PaperWorkBPM platform as agreed on the project plan,” she adds. “We used PaperWorkBPM Forms Builder, Workflow Designer and Document Management modules to create the solution. It also includes the eInvoice module and Web Services connector for integrations with other systems.”

After automating and integrating the processes on the PaperWorkBPM platform, PepsiCo gained total control of conventional channels’ marketing budget. Alongside budget control, PepsiCo has access to crucial marketing activity and sales data to analyse the profitability and efficiency of the marketing campaigns.

Access to critical marketing and sales data has made it easier for PepsiCo to make more sound choices throughout its marketing activities. “We can analyse the marketing activity, and sales data, mapped to each other” explains Ergul. “We can make profitability analysis of marketing activities. Now we have a critical dataset that we use for planning effective marketing campaigns. PaperWorkBPM drives us to make informed decisions on the type, timing, duration and profitability of the marketing activities. It helps us control our marketing budget.”

Moreover, he continues, “we eliminated errors and delays in invoice processing by automating and integrating it. We capture the invoices automatically, assign them to activities, get approved, and send to Oracle ERP using the PaperWorkBPM platform.”

He concludes, adding: “With this project, we won the award as PepsiCo Best of IT in 200 countries. It is important to recognise the exceptional effort and collaboration that our teams at PepsiCo have shown in achieving this critical project.”