Joseph J. Sherman
Business Development Representative - B2B SaaS

Business Development Talk with Eran Rozenfeld

Priority Software (Courtesy)

Eran Rozenfeld is the Managing Director at Priority Software U.S.  Born and raised in Israel, Eran jumpstarted his career over 20 years ago, as the Founder & CEO of Infobase Information Technology, a Priority ERP consultancy and implementation company based in Israel. A true “ERP guru”, Eran brings years of hands-on ERP experience, including business development, sales, project management implementation, process analysis, and system implementation to Priority Software. He joined the U.S. team in 2016, and currently lives in Reston, VA, with his wife and two sons.

Eran Rozenfeld (Courtesy)

What are Priority Software’s connections to Israel?  

Founded in Israel in 1986, and headquartered in Rosh Ha’Ayin (central Israel), with offices in Jerusalem, Priority Software is a leading global ERP software vendor with over 75,000 customers worldwide, providing flexible, end-to-end business management solutions for organizations of all sizes in a wide range of industries, from a fully featured ERP platform serving multinational corporations, to small and growing businesses. Priority is Israel’s largest ERP solutions provider, serving many of Israel’s leading manufacturers, professional services, and distribution companies. Priority HQ is home to the company’s local and global operations, including R&D, Product Management, Marketing & Sales, dedicated Customer Service & Support Center, and more.

Recognized by top industry analysts and professionals for its product innovation, Priority improves business efficiency and the customer experience, providing real-time access to business data and insights in the cloud, on premise, and on-the-go. With offices in the U.S., UK, Belgium, and Israel, in 2016, Priority Software expanded its presence in the Reston area of Fairfax County, Northern Virginia, in addition to offices in Rockaway, NJ, to expand its U.S. operations and support sales growth.

How has business development changed since COVID-19? 

We are in the midst of a crisis that nobody expected. It’s affected every industry and every business the world over, and no less, the ERP sector, in how organizations have had to rethink their operations, focus on remote working, and especially for manufacturers, large and small, how to adapt their processes and their workforce to the proverbial “new normal.” 

As a company based in Northern Virginia, what continues to be fundamentally important to Priority U.S., is the tremendous business development support we receive in the NoVa region, in particular, from the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA). FCEDA’s assistance prior to and during the COVID-19 economic crisis, has helped Priority better focus our efforts and resources on growing our business, especially in these challenging times.  

From a business perspective, because Priority ERP is a cloud-based solution, our employees were quickly able to adapt and work remotely, with full system access and functionality from their laptop, and with Priority Mobile – from any mobile device or tablet. This meant that not only for Priority US, but for all of our global offices, we didn’t miss a beat, even during imposed lockdowns in some regions. Priority’s development and product delivery schedules we’re on track 100% and that included our customer service centers around the world. 

From a customer perspective, all of cloud customers continued to work remotely at any time and from any location, despite production slowdowns or employees working from home, they were able to continue their operations safely and securely throughout the pandemic, and especially now, with a surge of new cases across the US.

Yes, COVID-19 has forced us to reassess our business development and work closely with our customers to help them re-evaluate their business operations. They now realize the importance and urgency of digital business management solutions to maintain business continuity, and yes, prepared themselves for future crises. 

Where is business development going?  

At Priority, from the get-go, back at the beginning of March, our teams are actively going the extra mile for our customers across all industries, to help them recover and grow again. 

We’re supporting our customers in their time of need by freely providing remote collaboration tools, cloud-based storage, and mobile ERP applications, and offering these same vital tools to our prospects. We have a large customer base in the manufacturing, distribution and professional services sectors, where, to survive the crisis, Priority ERP enables companies to be flexible and agile, and keep pace with today’s unprecedented challenges. 

Right now, our focus is on enhancing our customers’ supply chain, from procurement of raw materials, to production, to distribution to their end-customer – on time and on budget. This also means that plant managers and factory owners will be looking to secure inventory, warehouses, and distribution, not only manufacturing their products. To do this, they’ll need far better control of their entire supply chain. For our customers, no matter their size or scope, especially now, they are focused on saving costs, time and valuable resources. This is where we’re focusing our efforts, and help both our customers and prospects mitigate supply chain risks, and ‘stay afloat’ using a cloud-based ERP system.

How should business development managers adapt?  

From my point of view, business development managers in the ERP solutions sector, are turning their attention to not just a ‘quick fix’ but zeroing in on customers’ immediate and long-term needs, again, so that they’re equipped to face a future crisis. This means, having the infrastructure in place to enable remote working and to maintain their operations with a limited workforce onsite. Businesses are now in survival mode and it’s only those with cloud business management solutions in place that have been able to keep their doors open and forge ahead. 

At Priority, our business development has always been customer-centric, but especially now, we are plying our efforts into helping our customers best use their Priority ERP system to re-evaluate their processes and workflows – and work smarter, faster and easier, to save costs and resources – that’s number one! We give them the tools and necessary training to implement the system, but in recent months, our technical teams have ramped up our customer support, so that our customers can work more independently and gain better control of their operations, from financials, sales, production, inventory, warehousing, distribution, and their own customer management. 

What should executives know about business development?

I’m in constant contact with colleagues and business leaders from various industries, and from our discussions, there is one recurring theme – how this time has been and continues to be a vitally important learning opportunity. No matter where we are or the products or services we take to market, we all need to be flexible, open-minded and willing to try new approaches. We need to determine what works, what doesn’t, and why for customers and prospects alike. 

I am fortunate that at Priority, a global organization, that communication and collaboration are key. From the moment the pandemic hit, across the board, our management was quick to act – and react. We all worked tirelessly to rethink our skillset and business objectives. We revised our strategies, honing in on supporting not only our key customers, but all of our customers. This prompted increased communications with our customers, phone calls, emailers, company and product webinars, and more, all focused on giving them the tools and information they needed to, in some cases, salvage their business, while in others, enhance and maintain their business continuity. We are still doing this consistently – and we won’t stop. 

Is there a question that I did not ask that you would like to answer?  

I’ve talked a lot about Priority’s management, customers and prospects, but as I see it, it’s our Priority employees who have remained resilient these last few months. Without exception, with many still working from home around the world, they are the ones who responded best during the crisis. Employees with young children at home while schools were closed, spouses unemployed or on unpaid leave. No matter their predicament, each and every employee handled the “whirlwind” of events with professionalism, dedication, and skill. 

I take my hat off to Priority’s CEO and management team, the capacity and capability of our department leaders, and to how they quickly embarked on an accelerated campaign to keep the business running at full speed. Without their determination to maintain software development and delivery schedules, and our entire global technical support and customer service teams, to provide uninterrupted customer support, Priority would not have responded to the pandemic as effectively. 

About the Author
Joseph has extensive experience in business development, sales, and marketing with tech start-ups and scale-ups. Joseph holds a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from the KEDGE Business School in France, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, San Diego. In addition, he has studied at the Tecnológico de Monterrey (ITESM) in Mexico and received a fellowship from the University of California, Berkeley.
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