CRM Software Supports my Sales Team

CRM Software Supports
my Sales Team
present n
» Our customers are more successful.
As a sales manager, CRM is amongst the most important tools available to you and your team. In
particular, it supports your employees in effectively meeting their performance targets. We have
collected a number of useful tips for motivating your sales reps to make full use of your CRM system
- an important task in your role.
Why companies are
convinced by CRM
What employees
think of CRM
As a sales manager, you will be aware of the far-
Users may hold persistent negative attitudes to
reaching advantages of using customer relationship
customer relationship management solutions. CRM
management software. CRM software provides you
software is associated with:
»» A comprehensive overview of all customerrelated activities ("360 degree view")
sales planning options
to identify up-selling and cross-selling
»» A tool that helps new employees to quickly work
at full capacity
»» means to share information between
»» Higher documentation overheads
»» Fear that documenting customer histories means
employees are easily replaced
»» controlled by management
Negative experiences with cumbersome CRM solutions
are also often responsible for sales departments
preferring to work with Excel spreadsheets instead.
departments, improving the customer's overall
experience with your company
In an age where products are generally no longer the differentiating factor between companies, good customer relationships are often critical to business success. CRM software contributes to developing a customer-centric corporate
approach. However, the full benefits can only be reaped if employees regularly use the CRM system and use it correctly.
According to Forrester Research, in 70% of failed CRM projects, the system was not used enough.
Changing CRM's image
These obstructive attitudes and behavior patterns of employees towards CRM can however be overcome.
Doing so requires:
»» A modern, user-friendly CRM system
»» Up-to-date data and resources allocated to maintaining it
»» A willingness to invest in CRM functions that bring particularly high added value for your employees, such as
providing them with mobile devices and the ability to synchronize data with Microsoft Outlook
»» A manager that actively supports employees in meeting their performance targets
Why sales processes pose a challenge
In your role, it is important to understand the challenges your employees face on a daily basis.
Sales processes have changed substantially over the past years as a result of the increase in digital
communication. Well-informed prospective and existing customers require that sales employees are suitably
prepared and ideally have a high degree of insider knowledge. Prospective sales talks are harder to arrange,
as customers can perform their own research online, which is both more objective and time-effective. 60% 1
of the time, a decision has already been reached by the time an appointment is scheduled. However sales
reps are not redundant in the face of more independent customers. Sales opportunities simply need to be
identified more effectively, prioritized more intelligently and handled more efficiently.
One thing has, however, remained unchanged: the less time is spent on administrative tasks, the more time
is available for establishing and maintaining direct contact with customers.
How a CRM system supports your employees
A CRM system supports sales reps in completing their tasks, and as such is a means to an end. Sales tasks including more complex sales activities - can be handled more efficiently using the appropriate technology.
A CRM system serves as a knowledge base providing important information on your customers. It is a
powerful tool that allows reps to be suitably prepared for delivering professional sales pitches. Interacting
with customers become more strategic; while a rep's gut instinct remains important, it alone no longer
suffices in today's information age.
However, employees at a large number of companies are unaware that they can potentially benefit from a
CRM system - because no one has ever pointed this out to them! This despite the fact that coaching by the
sales manager is one of the most important success factors at 94% of the top global sales organizations 2.
Motivating staff to use CRM systems falls distinctly in this area.
1 Sales Benchmark Index (2013)
2 Miller Heiman (2013)
Communicating the advantages of a CRM system effectively
A manager's responsibilities include identifying how to motivate individual employees, addressing them on
a personal level and thus getting the best out of them. Maslow's hierarchy of needs is a timeless model that
provides managers with a basis for approaching these tasks. In order to achieve the best results, you should
communicate your message with a good understanding of motivation theory.
Analytical CRM identifies correlations in market demand; Intelligent use of the software
builds up expertise; Naming a “user of the quarter” raises the profile of role model CRM users
CRM software enables good preparation for coordination with superiors,
tracking customer contact strategically and prioritizing tasks by their potential for
sales success
Social needs
Interdepartmental, CRM-supported processes result in better understanding of
customers; Customer history and relationship networks help sales staff develop and
benefit from their networks
Hygiene factors
Safety needs
Overviews and reminders for customer-relevant tasks,
important information is not lost
Basic needs
User-friendly CRM software, reliable data, less administrative effort
and more time for direct customer contact
Communicating the benefits of CRM software should focus on the personal needs of your sales reps. A top
performer is more likely to be persuaded by arguments in favor of a CRM system that fall into the "esteem"
and "self-actualization" categories. A mid-level performer is more likely to see arguments concerning "safety"
and "social needs" as relevant.
CRM as a personal assistant,
not a corporate tool
Using CRM software is clearly beneficial to all users. In practice, however, too little time is often reserved for
discussing the CRM system with employees. When the CRM system is rolled out, employees then perceive
it as a corporate project. Explain to your team how the software solution benefits them in improving their
performance while also freeing up more time for their private lives. Any company is only as good as its
employees: it is high time that this sentiment be communicated!