As you’ll remember if you read my first blog - ’The Origins of Org.ly' - you’ll know how I came to decide to ‘invent’ Org.ly. As the app development process is moving along nicely it is probably time to reveal more details about Org.ly so you can get an understanding of what it will do, how it works, etc. when it is released towards the end of October.
What is Org.ly?
Org.ly is a Contact Management and Org Chart app aimed squarely at Sales Professionals. As sales professionals we need to create Org Charts of our customers for inclusion in Account Plans, presentations, etc. and Org.ly aims to transform this process by doing it all for you.
The old way
Creating Org Charts frustrates me enormously. Powerpoint is frankly rubbish at the job - you have to draw all the boxes, type everyone’s name in, connect them with lines, align, re-arrange, align, re-arrange, align and align again. You could use Visio but few of us have access to it. You could use mind mapping software which sort of works but isn’t pretty, at least not in the conventional sense, so, we are stuck with Powerpoint.
We only look at these org charts once in a blue moon, we never update them (until we need to do another account plan presentation – and even then we’ll try to get away without updating it) and we don’t carry them with us. We meet with our customers who will tell us their latest structure following a re-organisation and we write it down in our notebook, and then forget all about it. Or perhaps that’s just me…?
But here's the thing - Org Charts are for your management, not for you, not for the Sales Professional out in the field trying to exceed quota. Of course it is critically important that you understand the organisational hierarchy of your customer - you can’t under-estimate the value of that - but does the traditional Org Chart really add any value to you in the selling process? Not as far as I can see. What ‘we’ need is a simple way to see who reports to who within our customers so that we can quickly and easily pinpoint who we need to speak to.
The Org.ly way
So this is what Org.ly sets out to solve. You organise your contacts and Org.ly creates the Org Chart for you, automatically. In fact, you don’t have to think about Org Charts – you just focus on identifying who reports to who in your customer and leave the rest to Org.ly..
Org.ly allows you to immediately update the organisational hierarchy of your customer(s) within the app with a simple swipe. You can see the details of the reports for any contact all on one screen - swipe down on the contact to see their manager, swipe up on a contact’s report to see that person and their reports. Need to add a Direct Report, an Indirect or dotted line report or a PA - no worries - these are all options when you swipe. If you need to you can also input the organisational hierarchy for matrix teams, for example, a project team or global sales team.
Since you are only ever a swipe away from adding or amending these details it is really easy to keep it up to date. You can have Org.ly open while you are in a meeting with your customer and enter the report structure there and then - no need to write it down first and then update your org chart later (which you will never do, of course!).
With Org.ly, everything is at hand, and everything is always up to date. You can export a traditional Org Chart (which Org.ly automatically creates for you) for the one time in the year you need it, but on every other day of the year you have the entire company structure in the palm of your hand in an easily managed and digestible form.
As we explored this idea though, we realised that Org.ly really needed to be a Contact Management app that did Org Charts, as opposed to being simple an Org Chart app. If you are going to keep it up to date it has to be usable on a daily basis as your 'go to' app for searching, calling, texting, etc. any of your contacts - and it has to be slick and beautiful too :-)
When you launch Org.ly it automatically imports all of your contacts and arranges them into Company groups for you. If, like me, you’ve not kept your contacts well organised, correctly named, etc. then you can merge groups together and Org.ly will overwrite all of your contacts Company name to bring everything into perfect order. If you haven’t saved company names with your contacts then a quick swipe will add them to the correct company (or a new one that you’ve just created).
Org.ly connects to LinkedIn and Facebook (assuming you’ve logged in to them) and brings back photos for as many of your contacts as it can find and automatically displays them. This all syncs with your iPhone contacts and then backs-up to iCloud. Org.ly organises all of your contacts into something that your OCD friend would approve of.
There are already a number of future features on the roadmap. Contact profiling that aligns to the customer types found in Strategic Sales training (supporter, neutral, etc), a feature that allows you to set how often you should meet your contact and then reminds you when to call them, and even a team collaboration feature so you can share your contacts with others in your team and enable everyone to update the information in there, ensuring that you are even more up to date.
What features would you like to see in Org.ly? If, as you were reading this blog you were thinking "wow, that's a killer feature", or “if only it did this…” then please let us know via the 'Comments' section for this blog. All comments and thoughts gratefully received.