Fresh Direct

Fresh Direct is one of the UK’s leading fresh food suppliers, specialising in fruit, veg and dairy. They are a critical part of the Fresh Direct Family; a set of five specialist fresh food brands brought together to offer the foodservice industry the most comprehensive fresh food supply offer on the market. In 2016 Fresh Direct proudly became part of Sysco, the world’s biggest foodservice supplier.

Fresh Direct have experienced an impressive level of growth over the past few years. This is a testament to the quality of their products, excellent levels of customer service and the strong relationships they have formed with high street restaurants. They are very much unique because, despite an impressive increase in annual turnover, they have maintained the close-knit culture of a smaller company.

The Cloudreach team really took the time to look at our business processes and re-align them so that Salesforce became a naturally enveloped part of the day to day lives of our ace team of customer service and sales representatives.  Their work around integrating our existing ERP solution to the Salesforce platform has also allowed us to maximise the visibility of our data and make this data work for us to the obvious benefit of our customers.

Paul Brackenridge Head of Enterprise Solutions

The Challenge

Due to this sustained level of high growth, the next challenge for Fresh Direct was to sharpen and mature their operations in order to continue to provide excellent service to existing customers and to hit growth targets in terms of customer numbers. It is the dynamic, personalised communication with customers which has made Fresh Direct so successful; retaining this one-to-one service level was a top priority. They were experiencing a number of specific challenges:

  • Strained inter-departmental communications due to a high volume of email traffic. It was important to transparently identify issues to make sure that they are routed to the correct personnel, thus maintaining high service quality. Using the existing technologies, that was not possible.
  • Problems with order processing and delivery were negatively impacting the level of service to customers. Fresh Direct needed slick supply chain management and a streamlined logistical approach to ensure the food was delivered to the customer quickly, maintaining freshness and quality.
  • Fresh Direct believed the inventory, product forecasting and recovery delivery network would benefit hugely from transformation, to ensure no orders were missed, that the delivery network was more transparent, since supplying recovery orders comes at significant operational cost.
  • In order to provide efficient levels of customer service to their entire UK client base, Fresh Direct had to resolve all food and delivery issues as swiftly as possible; this avoids unnecessary crediting of accounts as well as ensuring the continued flow of orders. Current systems were too slow in reaching out to the correct depots and departments, resulting in crediting accounts without the necessary investigation taking place.  Fresh Direct hoped to be able to empower their customers to log and manage their own support tickets, which would alleviate administrative pressures.

Fresh Direct’s existing on-premise ERP solution (Prophet) managed more than just back end financials, with stock and order management overlaying the core functionality of the system.  Multiple instances of the solution existed across the organisation and these required convergence before any potential integration with the Salesforce platform.

The Solution

By using Salesforce, with its diverse ecosphere of software, platforms, apps and services, Fresh Direct were able to streamline their business operations whilst maintaining the values that have made them so successful. Cloudreach ran a deep consultation service in order to fully understand their business operations, ultimately suggesting a strategic vision. In collaboration with Fresh Direct we helped them to reengineer less efficient business processes and set up replacement processes within the Salesforce platform. There were a number of elements to the solution we provided:

  • Service Cloud: A customised Service Cloud console has allowed the customer service team to react, investigate and expedite all issues by associating the appropriate item in Salesforce with deliveries, orders and products. Supervisors and Account Managers can see all customer issues, from a late delivery to visibility of a damaged product item allowing the report on agreed KPIs to be swiftly delivered to the customer.  In addition, the use of Chatter for collaboration across the platform has afforded less of a reliance on the email as a siloed form of communication. 
  • Sales Cloud: Sales Cloud allows Fresh Direct to log and enrich all customer data for prospective and current customers, helping to create and maintain more personal relationships. A more streamlined and efficient on-boarding process including thorough credit check reviews and logistical acceptance for new accounts (or new site delivery locations) has readied Fresh Direct to take on new business. Furthermore, users no longer have to log into several different systems to find out the unique Pricebook or “Priceband” from which a customer can order, as Fresh Direct now have over 570 unique pricebooks in Salesforce to facilitate this need. 
  • Cloudreach Connect: At the heart of the transformation of the Fresh Direct business is Cloudreach Connect. This is a unique piece of middleware which connects any and many systems together. Connect allows all the disparate systems to talk to each other. For example, Cloudreach Connect will frequently review Salesforce data as well as Fresh Direct’s on premise ERP solution, Prophet, to log updates on orders, order items, products and delivery information and updates between a customer’s order date, and their delivery date. This integration ensures that all products that are missed or fall short on their delivery count are immediately updated in Salesforce.

The Partnership

Our unique iPaaS product, Cloudreach Connect, eased an otherwise complex integration to the end-state ERP, Prophet. We also provided significant support around change management, hands-on training of end-users and conducted a series of regular adoption sessions during the initial sprints. It was vital for the project’s success that Fresh Direct’s workforce embraced the new processes and were empowered to realise their benefits.  Cloudreach were responsible for the entire Salesforce ‘build’. In addition, Cloudreach were also closely involved in the promotion of the Salesforce brand with Fresh Direct to ensure maximum buy-in from those who would be responsible for using the system, day in day out.


The Outcome

  • We enabled and empowered Fresh Direct to transform and optimise their business operation to run in a far more streamlined, efficient and professional manner.
  • Personnel in the Service area can now respond to customer queries in minutes using Salesforce Case functionality, drawing on the 360-degree view of the customer they have at their fingertips, and respond to queries straight from their customised Service Console.
  • All Fresh Direct reps and managers can access known customer problems and quickly action solutions due to greater transparency and optimal sharing of information.
  • Sales reps can become more efficient, and have the potential to close more deals, now that they have access to the powerful workflow engine and a 360-degree view of customer information.

Related Case Studies

AWS Case Study The Met Office

For over 160 years, the Met Office has led the field in weather and climate forecasting, fulfilling its role as ...

AWS Case Study Argus Media

Argus is an independent media organisation, with headquarters in London and offices in the principal commodity centres worldwide. They ...