September 17 by Zack Alspaugh
Recently, Apttus and Adobe assessed the impact that sales automation solutions, specifically Configure Price Quote, Contract Management, and E-Signature, have on an organization’s revenue and sales cycles by partnering to launch a world-wide benchmarking survey. Surprisingly enough, the response that stood out more than any other in this survey wasn’t an obstacle to revenue or an estimated win rate. It was ‘I Don’t Know.’
- 1 in 4 survey respondents do not have any insight into key sales performance metrics
- 20% of companies did not know / couldn’t even estimate their win rate
- More than a quarter of companies didn’t know their average pipeline multiples
- Approximately 10% of respondents didn’t know their company’s revenue
While some of the survey results can be attributed to individual lack of knowledge, the prevalence of checkered responses indicates a gap in ability to identify and communicate operational efficiency and effectiveness. Opacity is the root of friction and inefficiency. If you don’t have visibility into your sales processes,you can’t effectively identify which Quote-to-Cash business processes you execute well, and which you need to improve. Worse yet, lack of visibility into the sales cycle cause a variety of problems, all of which result in lost revenue.
Flying blind is a competitive vulnerability, especially as cloud-based solutions provide more actionable data than ever before.
Companies with optimized sales processes understand that visibility comes in three varieties:
- Ensuring managers have visibility into what reps are doing
- Giving reps full visibility into their pipeline, approvals and product catalog
- Ensuring customers and partners have insight into pricing and the products and services catalog
When all three parties are informed, the experience is a vastly more efficient and effective sales process.
Steps for Improving Sales Visibility
An automated CPQ solution integrated with Contract Management will make the sales process more efficient.
CPQ allows sales leaders to manage strategies for different channels or geographies by giving full visibility into sales trends and channel effectiveness, so executives can course-correct when needed. Easy to use guidance for the right products and services, pricing, margin targets, customer’s existing assets and contracts help steer reps towards optimized deals so money isn’t left on the table.
Once deals are closed and contracts are sent for E-Signature, the approval status is automatically updated throughout the entire cycle. Sales managers and reps can view the approval stage and status; in addition, they can easily find previously signed documents and maintain a detailed audit trail at the same time.
This will also ensure revenue opportunities aren’t being overlooked. Automating contract management will improve renewal rates and revenue growth, in some cases, by 15% or more, which at the enterprise level can boost your top line by millions.
To learn more about enhancing your sales processes download the full survey report: 5 Sales Blind Spots That Are Costing You Millions