Take the Guesswork out of Sales Forecasting with Microsoft Dynamics CRM

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The Aberdeen Group recently published its latest research brief on Sales Effectiveness from June 2013 entitled “Making the Most of Your CRM: How Best-in-Class Sales Teams Maximize Revenue and Customer Experience.” The report highlights the drastic differences in performances between the organizations that are utilizing CRM technology and those that are not, with a particular focus on the use of sales pipeline tracking functionality. Per Aberdeen, having a CRM tool that drives a sales team’s opportunity entry, tracking, and forecast reporting processes is extremely beneficial. In particular, firms on CRM are far more likely to achieve sales team and individual sales rep quotas and they significantly shorten their sales cycle. Plus, they experience increased client retention rates. To illustrate, I have charted Aberdeen’s research that supports these benefits below.

Higher Sales Team Quota Attainment

Best-in-class sales teams on CRM have a 35% higher chance of attaining quota compared to industry standards (91% vs. 56%).

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Higher Individual Sales Rep Quota Attainment

Best-in-class sales reps on CRM are 39% more likely to attain individual quotas compared to industry standards (87% vs. 48%).

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Reduced Sales Cycle

Best-in-class firms on CRM reduce their sales cycle by almost twice as much as their industry peers (2.3% vs. 1.2%).

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Higher Client Retention

Best-in-class firms on CRM retain clients at a rate of 14% higher than the industry norm (90% vs. 76%).

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Overall, the best-in-class industry leaders, according to Aberdeen, are those that have mastered their sales effectiveness. They consistently update their CRM with the latest sales projections. If a current deal is not in CRM, then it is not even discussed at pipeline review meetings. Having a mandated, uniform opportunity tracking process that all sales reps adhere to makes it much easier for sales managers and executive management to analyze sales performance and discuss the firm’s short-term health. All in all, CRM enhances sales pipeline reporting accuracy and reliability, thereby giving firm leaders more faith in the sales forecasts. Plus, it is much easier for sales managers to line up the needed sales and marketing support resources to help close the high-profile deals in the pipeline and properly predict and plan future staffing needs.

Is your firm’s pipeline tracking and reporting process in need of an overhaul? If so, the Microsoft Dynamics CRM experts at Customer Effective are here to help. Our consultants can help re-engineer your sales process and better equip your sales team to more effectively and efficiently manage their pipeline and close more deals.

To receive more information on how Customer Effective can improve your sales forecasting process, please contact us.

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