Editor’s Note: This is our third installment in our “Building a Revenue Machine” blog series. In our first and second installments, we discussed how to fix inconsistency in your sales process and how to create enough pipeline to hit your number.
Today, according to CSO Insights, companies will spend nearly $20K per year/rep to improve productivity. And yet, rep productivity remains at an all-time low, with reps only spending 33% of their time on actual selling.
Overburdened with non-quota attaining tasks such as data entry, submitting internal requests for collateral, finding their own content, etc—reps are losing focus on their pipeline. According to Forbes Insights, “71% of C-level executives know that sales productivity is, in fact, paramount to enabling a company to grow.”
What we’re seeing in the market today are Sales Leaders who are actively working with their reps to improve productivity by:
- Reducing the number of mandatory fields in the CRM to get a deal
- Implementing CPQ tools to streamline the quote-to-cash process
- Adopting effective sales tools that eliminates manual data entry
- Investing in Sales Operations to unburden reps from administrative tasks
Investment #1: Consolidating Tools
Ironically, we constantly hear about “tool fatigue” from Sales Leaders. With over 300 different sales tools on the market, what started as a tool that helped reps has turned into an unmanageable toolkit that doesn’t work.
If this unmanageable toolkit is overwhelming reps—it’s a sure sign that you’re overspending on invaluable tools. Instead of cobbling together eight different solutions for sales productivity, embrace consolidation and focus on a few tools that align with solving rep productivity and your business needs.
Rather than spending on a productivity tool, a dialer, a tracking tool, etc.—purchase the vendor that offers a full solution, not just bit and pieces. If reps are only spending a third of their time on selling activities, often toggling between those eight different tools, that’s not an effective approach.
Investment #2: Automating the Process to Increase Capacity
Sales will never be automated, but smart Sales Leaders are embracing the notion that the menial aspects of the sales process must be automated. Would you rather have your most expensive resource (the Sales team) focus on closing deals or spending hours on data-entry?
If you don’t focus on automating low-value tasks, the friction that currently exists will continue to persist—which doesn’t help rep productivity. You need to invest in a tool that automates tasks like updating your CRM, creating tasks to send follow-up emails, setting up an email campaign with longer-cycle opportunities, etc. Through automation, it allows reps to focus on their warm opportunities while either eliminating repetitive tasks or staying top of mind with longer-term prospects.
Simply put, automation improves a rep’s capacity to do more selling and allows them to focus on:
- Having meaningful conversations with prospects to move deals forward
- Managing the number of active opportunities in their pipeline
- Shortening the sales cycle by having a laser focus on delivering value to prospects
- Driving higher close rates (while leveraging automation) and increasing the Average Selling Price
Focusing on sales capacity allows everyone to know how many opportunities need to be in the pipeline and the number of opportunities that need to close for reps to hit their number.
Investment #3: Sales Enablement as a Discipline
The responsibility of Sales Enablement is to provide reps the resources and skills they need to deliver your product’s value proposition to match a customer’s pain points.
The Sales Enablement discipline carries out the following responsibilities:
- Establishes a process that every rep can follow
- Ramps new reps faster
- Refreshes the skillset of seasoned reps that are looking to grow and learn
- Plays a critical role in driving value to customers
As companies continue to scale, Sales Leaders will continue to invest in Sales Enablement because it alleviates the sales productivity challenges imposed on them. When reps are equipped with the right content, the right talk track and know how to handle customer objections—that drives an efficient sales productivity.
How to Beat the Challenge
The most effective Sales Leaders rely on ToutApp as the one-go-to platform that consolidates tools while solving for friction at every stage of the sales process. ToutApp focuses on auto-logging to your CRM, providing a dialer and gives reps real-time insights into their communications—literally putting minutes back in a rep’s day, so they can focus on deals.
For a deeper dive into a Sales Leader’s challenges, stay tuned to our blog for the second installment next week. Or, to take immediate action, download our latest eBook the Sales Leader’s Guide to Building a Revenue Generating Machine.