ARLL Business Model -Telecommuting
According to Wikipedia – Telecommuting is a work arrangement in which employees do not commute to a central place of work. A person who telecommutes is known as a “telecommuter”, “teleworker”, and sometimes as a “home-sourced,” or “work-at-home” employee.
“Work is what we do, not where we are.” The ARLL business model is built around this telecommuting concept. We are a sales and marketing company offering our services to those companies looking to outsource the sales process for the surplus stock, obsolete, refurbished or customer returns they do not sell via their traditional channels.
Indeed, there are a couple of b2b platforms offering stock disposal solutions, but as we described earlier in a previous article , ARLL have been set up to deliver an outstanding client experience, based on excellence in b2b sales, achieving a superior, ethically based long-term value both for our vendors and for our clients.
Why have we decided to implement and use this business model in ARLL:
1) Flexible work options – giving employees the opportunity to organize their personal and professional lives in the most convenient way for them. For example, young and ambitious mothers that need flexible working hours – so they can take care of their children as well; or someone having a family member that cannot be left alone;
2) Overhead savings – Less costs with rent, bigger office, etc;
3) Technology help – all we need is PC and a broadband connection. All the information are in the cloud and all the applications used are integrated for maximum efficiency;
4) Having a local salesman – by having a sales force distributed across the continent we get real time feedback on each market and a better understanding on the future approach for maximising the sales and avoiding time wasting;
5) Helping us to retain talent – we measure the results and can reward and retain the efficient employees;
6) Boost productivity – we can avoid the everyday distractions of the normal office work-based environment;
7) We have access to a larger pool of talent – now we have set up the infrastructure to support telecommuting employees, we can recruit the best staff – regardless of their location.
Of course, there are also couple of disadvantages, which we try to overcome:
1) Isolation – we have 20 minutes Skype teleconferences every morning – to review the daily to do list; Also we check every few hours – taking the pulse of each point of sale;
2) Training – we have to make it via emails/teleconferences;
3) Micromanagement – we try to avoid constant supervision, thus we try to choose those employees that do not need permanent interaction with the manager to have the work done;
4) Accountability – the biggest impediment to managing a remote workforce is accountability. It can be hard to tell if someone is just working or sitting around the house watching TV in their pyjamas. But, at ARLL, we have implemented some systems that monitor performance by daily emails, calls, sales.
The Birmingham HQ office or “mother-ship” is for centralised management and back up work (order processing, stock lists preparation, monitoring, etc).
Each sales rep has a client portfolio (allocated in our CMR) access to stock and a personal direct landline number (UK number).
ARLL are at the moment the only company acting in this industry working on a telecommuting system and we plan to get to 20 sales reps all over the world by 2015!