Large firms like FE Credit, CEN Group, Kangaroo, and so on, had successfully utilized technology to improve customer experience and survive through the current crisis.  

On the afternoon of October 29, almost 100 CEOs from leading Vietnamese firms had gathered at the auditory of FPT Fville 2, Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park, Hanoi, and at FPT F-Town, District 9 Hi-Tech Park, Ho Chi Minh City, to discuss and seek effective sales approaches during the new normal and amid changing consumption trends.

Under the topic “Sales among COVID-19”, this event is hosted as a part of the “From survival to prosperity” online forum by FPT, with attendees joining digitally from both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Tech solutions

In his opening keynote, the Chairman of FPT – Mr. Truong Gia Binh, had highlighted current pressures inflicted by the ongoing 4th industrial revolution and COVID-19 on business operations. According to him, both the present and the future are providing tough problems for businesses to solve in order to survive and prevail – not only for themselves, but also for the overall welfare of our nation.

We have seen the negative impacts that COVID-19 brought to certain industries: revenue from hospitality had been halved, while Samsung exports had experienced a reduction of 13.5 billion USD. On the other hand, many other fields like agriculture, online econ, healthcare… are seeing this as an opportunity. Despite the conflicting effects, however, Mr. Binh still believed that everyone is finding themselves in face of challenges.

To prevail and survive, every organization and business must focus on 3 major aspects, he said. First, instead of business management, what leaders need to do now is to become a wartime lieutenant. Second, they need to change their ways of sales: businesses already with digital transformation should focus on their customers – trying to understand them better, giving more appropriate prices, being more flexible. Finally, businesses should impose incentives for their employees, especially during this challenging time. Businesses can also use AI for support and optimization of management.

Mr. Truong Gia Binh, Chairman of FPT. Photo: Tuan Cao.

Following FPT’s story, Mr. Arnaud Ginolin, CEO of consultant firm BCG Vietnam, had added that the pandemic may last for another 12-16 months. While holding high regards for tech solutions, he also put forth further inquiries to businesses, for example: can marketing operations in the next 12-16 months be quickly digitalized? How to allocate resources appropriately for all employees?…

In proving that technology is the way out of depression, Mr. Hoang Viet Anh – Deputy Head of Digital Transformation, FPT Corporation, had shared about his consulting experiences and FPT solutions in Vietnamese firms. The corporation in particular had built the Utop smart menu app for F&B businesses, the eKYC (electronic Know-Your-Customer) for TP Bank, the real estate sales app for CEN Group, and so on.

In danger lies opportunities

According to Mr. Nguyen Trung Vu – Chairman and CEO of CEN Group, the firm’s revenue still saw a 6% increase, which was higher than both last year’s performance and this year’s estimation. He believed that this result was achieved via two means: the first is quick adaption to new real estate preferences after Covid, and the second is tech application for better customer service.

Mr. Nguyen Trung Vu – Chairman and CEO of CEN Group. Photo: Tuan Cao.

The CEN Group leader disclosed that at the prolonged Covid-19, young people had the tendency to favor houses in rural areas. As the pandemic had limited them to their homes, many want to avoid the bustling cities It also helps that Vietnam is seeing constant developments in traffic infrastructure and urbanization, making it easier to live further away from the cities. It was their knowledge of these trends that kept CEN Group in the growth despite the pandemic.

Regarding the household electronics appliance industry, Mr. Nguyen Thanh Phuong – Chairman of Kangaroo Corporation, had shared the many novel sales channels that his firmed had developed to overcome Covid-19.

In particular, as stores had to close for social isolation, Kangaroo had kickstarted the sales of its appliances in drugstores (which were allowed to open during the pandemic) – which was higher in numbers than electronic stores. The business also expanded its product categories.

“Covid-19 had reduced our sales by installment by 80%, sales of luxury products by 70%, so we had expanded our common channels with low prices to cater to the new consumption needs,” Mr. Phuong said.

Mr. Nguyen Thanh Phuong, Chairman of Kangaroo Corporation. Photo: Tuan Cao.

Regarding the management aspect, Kangaroo had encouraged the integration of digital transformation in working procedures, reduced office budgets, and focused on sales channels. The above strategies had helped Kangaroo grew 200% during Covid-19, according to Mr. Phuong.

From Ho Chi Minh, Mr. Trang Uyen Phuong, Deputy President of Tan Hiep Phat Corporation, had disclosed that during the past 10 years, the corporation had always been focusing on building business cultures – and such a strategy had shown its pros as leaders now need to make prompt decisions. The corporation had also saved over 10 billion VND in each department for cost reduction and recovery funds.

A representative from FE Credit also treated digitalization as the sole solution against today’s crisis. Mr. Marek Forysiak – founder of SmartPay and chair member of FE Credit, disclosed that their customers had asked for quick changes and better access to online transactions. As a result, the firm had now allowed online processing of loan contracts and online installment applications.

Before Covid-19, FE Credit used to have over in-office 8,000 employees. However, the pandemic had rendered this impossible, and customers were also reluctant to transact in person. Tech application had thus helped the firm maintain their connection to customers.

Now, FE Credit had over 200,000 downloads per month for their app – a number seemingly impossible before. Borrowers now require never before functions like online loan registration and goods payment. In fact, the total amount of mobile transaction had been doubling every month since June, according to Mark.

The “From survival to prosperity” forum is a series of event hosted by FPT with the aim to connect Vietnamese businesses to together share their problems, experiences, and discuss the most suitable approaches and solutions. It is also a chance for businesses to cooperate and grow form partnerships to alliances.

Source: VnExpress

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