“The offline capability of Unplugged offers real value-add that we benefitted from as recently as October 2012, when hurricane Sandy swept across the east coast of the United States. Like many other businesses, Kronos Worldwide experienced outages however, managers using approvals tool, were able to access, review and approve requests using Unplugged. It kept us moving.”
- Joseph Frank, Director Applications Development
Kronos’ customer resource management (CRM) application is a 3rd party tool that stores sales and customer information in a Lotus Notes database. The sales force enters various forms that require a series of approvals from sales and marketing managers and other members of the leadership team. Since the approvals system was accessible only through a desktop or laptop computer, there was a slowdown in the approval process because management did not have the ability to approve requests unless they were connected in the office or via virtual private network (VPN). By nature of their job, managers are frequently traveling or in meetings and generally away from their desk or office.
They would receive emails notifying them that an approval request required their attention, but were unable to view or process these approvals until returning to their office.
It was determined a mobile solution was necessary to extend the workflow process. The objective was to two-fold, offer managers flexibility to get their work done and help improve “time to approve” metrics.
The Teamstudio Solution
Teamstudio Unplugged was the answer for Kronos. Providing a mobilization platform for their approvals process gave managers the flexibility to approve requests from their mobile phones and tablets. Kronos managers now receive an email on their mobile device alerting them of a pending approval, and they’re able to launch the app from the same device to process approvals. Because Unplugged also provides the capability to access data and have full application functionality when offline, managers are also able to process request when there’s no wireless or cellular connectivity. Once a connection is established the data can be synced with the database.
The application was in test mode within 2-3 months and initial deployment was made in North America.
For Kronos, Unplugged has improved their “Time to Approve” metrics. Approvals are now quicker and easier. Managers have increased productivity and now have the flexibility to approve requests when they’re away from their computer, traveling or in meetings. Because of the overwhelmingly positive results in North America, Kronos is rolling out the application to the European offices, which have recently committed to use “time to approve” as a performance KPI.
KRONOS Worldwide, Inc. and its predecessors have been producing titanium dioxide pigments (TiO2) since 1916. Today, TiO2 is the world's primary pigment for providing whiteness, brightness and opacity. The company has continued to grow and invest in its worldwide TiO2 business and currently operates six production plants and mines at locations in five countries on two continents.