Digital Transformation: How True Alliance Empowers Teams with Quip

By Caitlin Denham-Swanson

What do Nautica, The North Face, Teva, Speedo, and Reebok have in common? In Australia and New Zealand, these top apparel brands are all distributed by True Alliance. With a total of 20 brands, True Alliance requires a lot of internal communication and collaboration across departments.

In March, True Alliance CRM Manager Kelei Gentles was interviewed before a worldwide virtual audience at Salesforce World Tour Sydney, where she explained how Quip became an important part of the company’s digital transformation. You can watch the full Salesforce World Tour Sydney session, How True Alliance Empowers Their Teams With Quip For Customer 360, or read on for an expanded interview.

Prior to Quip, how did the True Alliance brands collaborate and operate in a productive way?

We have 20 brands at True Alliance. The daily operation of running so many brands requires a lot of input from different departments and stakeholders and a lot of collaboration and communication. Primarily this was done via standard business communications — email, instant chat, phone calls, and meetings. We had a lot of processes in place to ensure everything ran smoothly, but as we were undergoing this huge digital transformation within the business and implementing both Marketing Cloud and Commerce Cloud, we started to also look internally at our own processes and ways of working to see how we could improve on this and what tools or programs were available. Quip was that solution for us. Quip was shown to us by Salesforce and we saw instant opportunity to utilize the tool within our own business.

Taking away all the other points of communication and simply channelling into Quip allowed us to streamline all of our processes. Additionally, collaboration amongst all teams in a central location increased efficiencies. There is no longer a multitude of emails being sent back and forth cluttering up inboxes, or conversations and feedback happening across different mediums; everything is in one place. Quip is a live environment and everyone is kept on the same page and accountable in a constructive way.

Has Quip seen positive adoption since implementing? What advice would you give to any organization evaluating the product in the transformation/change management process?

The beauty of Quip is that everyone can look at it and start to form an idea of how it can be­ utilized to suit them, their department, or their business needs. We originally looked at Quip to solve one process that expanded over four departments, and within a couple of months, everyone that was using it started to see the benefits and adopted Quip into their own brands or team processes. Marketing teams were using it to collaborate on cross-channel activity and planners; Brand Managers adopted it for their critical paths across various brand departments based all over the country; and we all began using Quip for WIP management amongst our teams.

When evaluating, my advice would be to understand what are the needs or gains you’re trying to solve. Ours was collaboration and campaign centralization. How could we evolve something that works to work more easily, work better, and work more efficiently, and how we could quantify that time gained?

For any CRM manager, a big concern is often adoption. How did you manage this concern and drive positive adoption?

Our biggest concern was around timing. We were concerned about rolling out Quip during all the other platform and process changes that we were going through as a business with Commerce Cloud and Marketing Cloud. The added adoption of Quip seemed like we were adding an extra layer and yet another new tool to be introduced, which could have potentially resulted in a loss of productivity due to ramping up. However, this wasn’t the case — adoption was easy and straightforward.

We started small and we didn’t undergo any major changes in how we worked and operated to see the real benefits of the tool and it was immediate. We kept the same processes and documents, just moved them into Quip: Campaign briefing documents that were passed between three departments, now sat as one Quip document that everyone could access and tag the next in line to contribute. All of our email campaign feedback was no longer done over email, with difficulties trying to keep up with the latest version or chase for approvals; everything became streamlined in Quip, and the response from the teams involved has been great.

We’ve currently only been on Quip about six months and over the last few months we’ve modified and made a few tweaks as everyone has become more comfortable using the tool. It’s something we’re constantly evolving as we discover more of the platform capabilities.

Which teams were the first to adopt Quip when you rolled it out and which other teams have since started to use it?

The first team to adopt Quip was the Digital team as we got Quip primarily as a campaign management tool for our department and its collaborators. Once we got a feel for the platform, we on-boarded our necessary collaborators from Creative, Marketing, and Planning, who all have input into digital campaigns.

Which Live Apps are you currently integrating with Quip?

The main Live App we currently use is the Marketing Cloud integration — this has been the ultimate game changer for us in improving productivity and working efficiently. Email creative is uploaded directly into Quip for feedback and approvals, rather than emailing multiple versions to a group of people to individually collate feedback.

If you had a magic wand that could instantly develop a new Live App to be utilized by True Alliance, what would it be?

Datorama, which we’ve just adopted in True Alliance. Integrating it with Quip would allow for full view of campaign and performance in one place, available for any contributor.

Watch the full Quip session at Sydney World Tour here. If you’re interested in trying Quip, Quip Starter will be available for free to any organization through September 30, 2020.