Hernan Vera, Managing PartnerA well - executed marketing and sales strategy plays a pivotal role in boosting growth, profit¬ability and market share. Cloud-based Customer Relationship Manage¬ment (CRM) solutions offered by providers such as salesforce.com help support and accel¬erate desired strategic outcomes. Challenges surface in achieving ROI when CRM deployments launch with limited train¬ing budgets and ambi¬tious change management requirements are left to the field organization to “work it out as we go”. Add these challenges to an organization restructuring, a strategic acquisition, revenue compression within existing accounts or, the need to aggressively expand into new markets, and the organization will quickly begin to ask “where is the ROI from our CRM investment?"
Sales Outcomes, a consulting and services firm, has exten¬sive experience working with global organizations to improve sales and marketing execution through increased use, adoption and leverage of their CRM solution investments. The firm’s core expertise is helping organizations integrate sales operations, mar-keting, training, coaching, incentive design and sales organiza¬tion structure to accelerate execution of the sales and marketing strategy.
Miami, Florida-based Sales Outcomes’ principals have led sales and marketing teams within Fortune 500 and Global 2000 firms, so they understand the challenges of executing to a com¬pany’s business strategy and aggressive growth targets. Their real-world experience helps clients transform their marketing and sales organizations into high-performance teams through better execution. They have worked throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, thus providing clients a diverse perspective on addressing cultural differences in global engagements.
A key component of Sales Outcomes’ approach to helping drive CRM ROI for clients is helping clients identify leading sales success metrics, in addition to traditional lagging indica¬tor metrics such as performance to target. The right leading sales success metrics set clear, Technicolor targets and help highlight the specific sales (and/or marketing)activities needed to deliver results. When sales leaders understand what needs to get done, and the organization measures what is or is not getting done, the likelihood of successful execution of your sales plan improves dramatically.
We’ve never seen a sales person outpace their sales manager when it comes to CRM adoption and usage. Invest the bulk of your money and resources on the sales manager, not the sales people. If the sales manager sees the value, she’ll make sure that her team can’t live without the CRM system.
A recent Sales Outcomes client had struggled to achieve adoption of its CRM investment to the point that, after one year, they had given up trying to manage their sales forecast from the CRM solution. One of the contributors to the situation was that shortly after the initial CRM deployment; the organization began to create parallel, spreadsheet-based processes to facilitate weekly forecast calls with finance and operations teams. The spreadsheets quickly took over because the client had not properly aligned the sales forecasting process language and terminology with the finance organization terminology. So, when sales exported the forecast from the CRM to finance, the finance organization needed additional or different information to accommodate their established processes. Sales Outcomes helped the client harmonize the forecasting terminology between sales and finance, re-launch the sales forecasting process in ten countries and, introduced consistent pipeline management and forecast management processes. Within 90 days the client was fully man¬aging its sales forecast with the CRM tool. In addition to freeing up valuable time that was spent managing spreadsheets, the client increased sales results and began to see significant improvements in sales forecast accuracy.
Sales Outcomes has supported clients with diverse CRM solutions, however its focus has been with clients that have deployed salesforce.com. Salesforce.com’s technology and consulting part¬ner eco-system has been critical in helping Sales Outcomes clients deploy CRM faster and more effectively.