Cyncly's Dean Smith – Who we are and what we can offer KBB retailers

InsightFeatures Mon 19th Feb 2024 by KBBFocus

Cyncly's Dean Smith – Who we are and what we can offer KBB retailers

Cyncly's Dean Smith – Who we are and what we can offer KBB retailers

It’s been about 18 months since Cyncly was announced to the market – so what has been happening in that time and what is the team bringing to KBB Birmingham? We talk to Dean Smith, senior sales manager EMEA & APAC SMB, to find out.

Q: So – tell us about Cyncly
A: Cyncly was born from the now well-documented merger of Compusoft Group & 2020 Technologies in 2021. Both businesses, successful in their own right, came together in a shared vision to reshape the way spaces are imagined. What’s intriguing is that, independently, both brands were working towards similar goals – reshaping the way spaces, especially in the KBB sector, are imagined, designed and sold. Now, under the Cyncly banner, we have the collective strength of these previously separate teams, plus other organisations that have joined the brand, including Virtual Worlds, working together with a great foundation of products, expertise and a commitment to the success of our customers.  

The last 18 months have been quite an adventure! I completely understand that not all the work we’re doing has been visible to our customers. We’re working hard to communicate with them and appreciate their commitment during this period of change. The unified structure under Cyncly has given us the opportunity to be more creative in considering how to enhance the customer experience and build the future of design and retail for the KBB sector. Our team is united in our efforts to offer software that helps make spaces amazing, and we’re looking at the full consumer journey: inspiration, design, sales, manufacturing and installation. We’re organised to deliver innovation and greater value at every business scale, with a suite of solutions that directly target the needs of independent retailers.

Q: How have you been integrating brands under the Cyncly umbrella in the KBB sector?
A: For the KBB sector, we’re organising our efforts through two business units: Kitchen, Bathroom and Furniture solutions for retail and Kitchen, Bathroom and Furniture solutions for manufacturers. Outside the KBB sector, we also have business units dedicated to Flooring and Windows, Doors & Glass solutions.

Our goal with these KBB retail and manufacturing business units is to bring together the solutions that best help our customers, invest in building innovative capabilities, improve solutions to enable more automation, integration and insights, increasingly offer them as cloud-based software, and support every customer with a personal touch.

Many customers will be familiar with our KBB design and sales products including Ideal Spaces, Winner Flex, EQ, and Virtual Worlds, among others. For manufacturing we offer products including Mozaik, 3CAD, and Insight.

To take the integration of Virtual Worlds into Cyncly as an example: from my perspective this marks a pivotal step in bringing great products and expertise into a larger range of product offerings. Virtual Worlds is a brand synonymous with innovation, and a market leader in the UK Bathroom sector. The addition of Virtual Worlds into the Cyncly family has fostered more joined-up thinking internally, enabling us to deliver more value to our customers through enhanced integrations of products. Our customers are already enjoying the immediate benefits of this addition through continuity of service and can expect a more unified, seamless experience as we continue evolving.

Q: What is the overall aim of the integration?
A: Our mission is to help our customers in the spaces-for-living industry deliver outstanding consumer experiences, more efficiently and profitably. I’ve been amazed at the experience of working on a team that really knows their local market needs, but now has global resources to improve our solutions and develop new technologies. The integration puts us in a unique position of having the talent, ability to invest and commitment to customers to make a difference.

When I talk with customers, I’m hearing about the challenges associated with meeting elevated consumer expectations for kitchens and bathrooms. For one, most want a seamless experience that spans online and in-person retail. Many customers are looking for self-service inspiration and design capabilities. They want realistic, immersive renderings that bring designs to life, and they want to iterate on designs faster using real-time catalogues, stock and delivery data.

The goal of the integration is to help our KBB customers meet these elevated expectations, so they can offer an outstanding experience without compromising margins. The alignment of Cyncly’s products, our expertise, and our commitment to our customers’ success helps our KBB customers offer an outstanding consumer experience: reduce consumer uncertainty, deliver projects with fewer errors, at lower cost. All of that’s guided by keeping the consumer’s interests in mind as we’re making decisions on how to serve our customers in the design and retail space.

Q: What advantages does bringing all these products under one brand offer customers?
A: Our customers can now tap into the unparalleled expertise now organised under the Cyncly brand. Together, we have more resources for product development and innovation, and more knowledge than we had separately. From my perspective, the end-to-end software solutions offered by Cyncly serve as a powerful bridge, connecting professional designers, retailers, and manufacturers to the vast repository of product content globally. This connectivity empowers stakeholders in the industry to simplify complexity, foster sales growth, improve operational efficiency, and cultivate a culture of innovation. It’s helping our customers redefine the way customisable products and spaces are imagined, designed, marketed, managed, and brought to life.

Q: What can visitors expect to see at kbb Birmingham?
A: Our core focus across the four days is to meet with our customers old and new, ensure their voices are heard, their business needs promptly addressed, and are directed to the right team, products, and services that lead to tailor-made solutions. 

As a visitor, there are some exciting highlights you won't want to miss. Our Winner Flex platform remains a game-changer. Winner, our trusted kitchen design tool, has been seamlessly integrated into the company’s Flex platform, which brings our applications to the cloud. I've personally witnessed many of our long-time customers successfully make the transition in recent months. The ultimate goal is to have all our products operating on the Flex platform, offering cloud-based access to projects and allowing for unparalleled flexibility to work remotely – a crucial feature in today’s fast-paced world. Many customers are already consolidating project data into management dashboards and reports, providing valuable business insights, all within a secure and serverless infrastructure.

Additionally, the integration between EQ (our market leading quoting and project management tool) and Virtual Worlds has taken a significant leap forward. We've launched an improved integration that enhances the synergy between these two systems, saving time and reducing errors for our bathroom customers.  

All of our key brands will be present, with a team of experts ready and waiting to consult on your business needs, so make sure you see us on stand L70 in hall 19.

Q: What are your future plans and what do they mean for retailers using your systems?
A: Our objective is to continue improving and integrating our solutions. One measure of success is whether the consumer journey shifts from disparate interactions over the course of a kitchen or bathroom project to a seamless experience with fewer mistakes, more customisation and better service. We want our designers and retailers to deliver a great experience while protecting their margins.

At the same time, we’re also incorporating innovations into our solutions. We’re investing in automation and incorporation of AI solutions that save time, increase personalised service and improve quality. We’re improving aspects like the user interfaces of our software to make workflows more efficient and intuitive – which also helps with onboarding new users into the system.

Finally, the alignment of Cyncly brands is ongoing. I’m excited that we’re working toward having implementation, customer support, professional services and other touch points truly under one roof. While all this is happening at the company level, I know that our UK team is intensely focused on the needs of our local market, and customers can expect the same high level of personal attention they’ve come to expect from their relationship with us in the past.

Q: What emerging challenges do you see for the KBB industry?
A: In tough economic times, we all face challenges, but I strongly believe there's a ‘secret sauce’ to survive and thrive – innovation. It's tempting to cut back, but investing in tools that improve efficiency and elevate sales is the key. Resisting the urge to take shortcuts and focus on what makes you special – whether it's stellar customer service or unique designs. Know why customers choose you and shout it out loud! Remember, it's not just about surviving; it's about standing out and making every lead count.  

Tags: insight, features, dean smith, cyncly, virtual worlds

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