Selling solar requires many different skills. You need to be technically proficient, you need to understand many aspects of a constantly changing market, and you need to be able to talk about everything from panels and inverters, to net energy metering.
Whether you’re a new employee, or a seasoned vet, that’s a lot to keep track of. There are a lot of areas where any mistakes can be costly — whether it’s choosing components for a design, or making changes to an existing site model.
Why Being Able to Limit Access is Important
Selling solar is difficult enough, without reps having to worry about making sure every little detail is accounted for, that every design is up to code, and that every component is available.
Common mistakes like selecting the wrong component for an install, or changing an existing site model, can have large consequences for your business — from extra truck rolls, to having to redesign sites, and more.
This materially affects your bottom line, and can make it difficult to scale your business effectively.
“From a scalability perspective, you want to limit the control that the sales rep has. As you scale, you’re going to have more and more reps in the field,” Kenny Klinger, Senior Director of Sales for Powerhome, explained in a recent webinar. “And to scale that and stay consistent, you want to reduce what they have access to and keep it extremely simple.”
This is where some of Aurora’s advanced team permissions, like Secure Mode, can help ensure that the designs your team sells are accurate and error free. How?
How Aurora Helps
In this blog we’ll look at a couple tools administrators have to help control what your sales team can see and edit in Aurora designs. This not only helps avoid mistakes, but significantly simplifies the process for your sales reps, taking many detailed tasks off their plate.
First, we’ll see how your company administrators can pre-set the specific solar modules, inverters, and other key system assumptions that your team can use in Aurora. Your admins simply select the parts your company typically installs with, saves them in the database so others can see them in their projects, and they then appear at the top of that list when using Aurora.
You can also do things like automatically apply fire-code setbacks to a site based on project location, so sales reps can’t place panels on top of setback areas or change the setbacks — ensuring that the designs they sell are compliant with local regulations. Without these guardrails, if reps place panels overlapping the setbacks, it would require a change order because the design would not be approved by the local AHJ.
Then, we’ll see how Secure Mode lets administrators determine who can create and edit site models. For example, you can lock site models to prevent team members from making changes to tree heights and buildings.
This gives the sales team everything they need to wow the customer, including interactive design tools, powerful performance simulations, and stunning visuals — all without editing the design.
How to Use Advanced User Roles & Permissions
In the Aurora admin module, go to the “Database” tab at the top of the screen. On the left, you’ll see many options, including for modules, inverters, and optimizers.
You can then simply click on the category (“Module” in this example) and type a term into the search box. Then just click the “+” sign on the products you want to use (turning them into a green checkmark).
This product is now favorited and will appear with other favorited components when you’re designing.
The video below walks through the entire process, starting at about the 2-minute mark.
Now let’s move to locking the site models, so only certain team members can create them or make changes. This ensures that designing is left to the experts, while sales reps can focus on what they do best — selling.
To begin adding users and permissions navigate to the Settings area. (Note: you must be an admin to set up user roles.) Unselect the “Limited Team Members Can Access Site Model” checkbox.
Then, select a company user and set their level to “Limited Team Member” (LTM) to limit that person’s site access.
If Site Model editing permissions have been restricted for LTMs, users will see the following when they try to access the Site tab:
To learn more, check out the Secure Mode site.
We’ll be back next week with the feature we’ve all been waiting for: Feature #1. In the meantime, be sure to check out our dedicated 10 Things You Didn’t Know Aurora Can Do homepage to learn about the other things we’ve featured so far. Then schedule a live demo to learn more about how these features can help you produce more accurate solar designs.
Do you have suggestions for an issue or feature you’d like to see covered? We’ll have some Aurora gifts for any ideas we use. Email us here.