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By: Luis Murguia, Senior Vice President at SAP

The human eye is the second most complex organ in the human body after the brain. It is composed of more than 2 million working parts and is connected to the brain by more than 1 million nerve fibers. A human fingerprint, one of the most unique personal identifiers, has roughly 40 characteristics, while the iris in the human eye has 256.

No wonder humans are such visual creatures.

And no wonder that amidst the U.S. healthcare industry’s unprecedented change, there’s more competition than ever for ways to keep the human eye healthy.

If the human eye is the second most complex human organ, the sales process within an ophthalmological healthcare product developer working in the digital economy might be akin to a close third. Ok, maybe fourth.

So like the eye, healthcare sales teams put a premium on the ability to be visual, mobile and fast.

Even for large companies with lots of resources, marshalling the kinds of information and systems necessary for this can be a daunting task. But it is also a critical one, and especially so for the small business competing in our digital world.

In an annual study of small businesses conducted by The Hartford, “only 33 percent of small business owners say their primary goal is to grow their business significantly…This is down from 41 percent in 2012.”


Making data-driven decisions and arming teams with powerful systems and analytics can shift the growth priority back to the positive for small and medium sized businesses.

As small businesses grow, simplifying the management and analysis of key operational data and making it available for sales team on-the-fly is a must.

Small businesses often balk at the perceived cost, complexity or sheer resources needed to implement analytics systems, but Marco Ophthalmic quickly found out that seeing was believing.

Jacksonville, FL-based Marco Ophthalmic makes everything from high-tech digital refraction, mapping, and imaging systems to examination chairs – everything eye care professionals need to improve lives by improving vision.

Marco’s sales team may not have quite as many working parts or information streams as the human eye, but when they sought to streamline their sales to better compete in the digital economy they faced a complex challenge. They needed a way to consolidate customer, prospect, sales and inventory data for a single view. And while humans close their eyes for a few hours each night, Marco’s global sales team never sleep – they needed the data to always be at their fingertips.

The solution for Marco, like so many businesses succeeding in the digital economy have found, was an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution with integrated, real-time mobile analytics.

Sales teams can’t sell without current data. Instant information is critical for increasing sales productivity and customer satisfaction. Better visibility in to orders, which customers are most profitable, quality control processes and partner inventory let Marco plan better, increase order volume and keep customers happy.

But even more vital than simply having the right data is what form the data came in. It had to be easily accessible and understandable – and that meant visuals. Mobile dashboards and interactive analysis keep the entire company up to date, and free up hours to make more sales.

The human eye is uniquely powerful, making an incredibly complex process appear simple. Don’t underestimate the ability of systems with integrated analytics to do the same for a digital business.

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