Javier Peralta, UK Country Manager for mobile sales management specialist ForceManager, looks at how mapping sales activity can improve staff performance and boost sales.
In a metrics and results-driven business like sales, tracking and analysing staff activity is crucial to improving performance. However, with sales staff increasingly mobile and away from the office, it can be difficult for sales managers and directors to really know what their employees are doing and how they are performing.
Gaining True Insight into Performance
Up until recently, sales managers have had few resources with which to assess the performance of their field sales force. In the absence of a truly mobile CRM solution, salespeople on the road have not had access to the same CRM resources that office-based staff have, leaving them with less customer information to help them do their job and turning reporting into a chore to be done at the end of the week or month. The result is that field sales teams have largely been left to rely on their own skill to nurture relationships while sales managers have had limited information, inconsistent and poor quality information to monitor field sales performance and provide targeted support to the staff that require it the most.
However, the rise of truly mobile CRM technology has made it easier for salespeople to report on the go and for their managers to track their performance. These mobile solutions track communication such as calls, emails and face-to-face visits, giving businesses greater insight into their sales activity and performance. With geolocation, mobile CRM systems can also provide an overview of the geographical areas where sales efforts are being focused, and where they could be missing out on opportunities.
As a result, sales managers and directors can access a range of metrics to measure sales performance, such as how many calls, emails and visits are actually resulting in sales. But to get the maximum value from this information, it should be used not simply to track staff activity, but also to analyse their performance and identify areas for improvement.
The Four Quadrants of Performance Measurement
So how can sales managers best approach assessing and evaluating the performance of their employees? Broadly speaking, there are four quadrants which salespeople can be grouped into when analysing their efforts and results (see fig1). Let’s take a closer look at how sales staff performance can be mapped using this method and how this model can be used to boost sales.
Working and selling
These people are clearly the best performers, working hard and producing a high volume of sales – and they should be rewarded for it. That doesn’t mean they should just be left to rest on their laurels, though. Staff need regular motivation, and relationships with customers need to be maintained and nurtured so as to maximise the potential business from each customer. Sales managers should also think about what other team members can learn from their highest performers and how they can share this best practice across the team.
Selling but not working
Some staff are capable of meeting their sales targets without a great deal of interaction with customers. They obviously have a talent for selling but aren’t striving to reach their full potential. It could be that they are spending too much time on individual contacts or that they are not planning their time efficiently. On the other hand, it may be that because they are hitting their targets, they have simply become complacent and started underperforming, in which case they need motivation to increase their efforts and, in theory, generate even more sales.
Working but not selling
Sales staff can often work extremely hard without getting results. They make the calls, they send the emails, they visit prospects, but they don’t generate sufficient sales from their activity. This could be a case of not targeting the right customers, not following up communication, or perhaps signal that they need help in the art of qualifying and converting targets. These employees should be recognised for their hard work but given training to help them enhance their sales numbers.
Not working not selling
The most concerning group for sales managers is the one that is neither making the effort nor getting results. This could be through a lack of motivation, lack of self-confidence or simple lack of selling ability. Managers need to identify why these team members are not performing and what can be done to help them improve, as it is clearly not good for business to be carrying people who are not contributing to the bottom line.
Understanding these four quadrants, and which one employees fall into, can greatly help organisations to manage their sales staff. Using the data that mobile CRM technology provides, staff who are working hard and performing well can be recognised and rewarded, while those who are struggling to generate sales or underperforming can be given targeted support and training. Giving managers greater insight into the performance of their staff also incentivises staff to regularly evaluate their own actions and keep up-to-date records of their sales, something that mobile CRM systems enable through fully automated reporting and streamlined CRM processes.
With an increasingly mobile workforce, mapping sales staff performance is a vital function. With the help of mobile CRM technology and the four quadrants of analysis, sales managers can utilise performance mapping to increase productivity, improve efficiency, keep staff happy and motivated, and ultimately boost those all-important sales. crm