Recently Justin Roff-Marsh explained in an email some of the concrete outcomes that companies experience when they implement sales process engineering (SPE). Too often we get lost in the theory and the system; we lose sight of tangible results we want to achieve.
|Before SPE||After SPE|
|Salespeople work as craftspersons. They sell to customers, but in addition they have many transactional responsibilities. These transactional activities include administration, customer service, quoting, and solution design.||Salespeople work as part of a team. All transactional responsibilities are routed to either customer service or engineering. Salespeople spend their time in meaningful conversations with customers.|
|Salespeople are responsible for prospecting. They are expected to discover and pursue their sales opportunities.||Prospecting is conducted by Promotions, a group within Marketing. Promotions produces a consistent flow of sales opportunities that are released to salespeople as they need them.|
|Salespeople work on both inside sales and outside sales.||Salespeople either do inside sales or they do outside sales, not both. Outside salespeople may participate in conference calls, but these are scheduled in advance and are conducted from a hotel or from home.|
|Marketing pushes sales opportunities to sales. Sometimes they push too many opportunities, more than sales can manage. And sometimes they push too few opportunities.||Promotions releases opportunities to sales only as sales needs them. In other words, sales pulls opportunities from Promotions. At the beginning of each day,
Promotions replenishes the queue of sales opportunities. This is their core responsibility.
|Accounts are owned by salespeople.||No single person owns an account. Inside salespeople are responsible for the opportunities that are released to them. Outside salespeople own discrete tasks,
mainly the performance of meaningful sales conversations with customers which are scheduled for them. The team as a whole is responsible for the various account responsibilities (administration, customer service, solution design and selling). Resources are specialized and each person on the team has a specific role.
Roff-Marsh has seen that companies who implement sales process engineering experience these economic benefits:
More sales activity which leads to more sales. Field salespeople are able to be scheduled into four in-person sales meetings per day for a total of twenty meetings per week. Inside salespeople can do twenty or more meaningful sales interactions per day.
Sales staffing costs go down. Companies need fewer field salespeople, fewer layers of management, and fewer regional offices.
Customer service quality goes up. Because people are focused on their area of specialization, they get really good at doing what they do. They develop methods that enable them to constantly improve their productivity. Lead times for quotes go down, response times for customer service queries likewise decline. Sales cycles move faster because salespeople are more focused on the sequence of selling conversations and less distracted with customer service, administration and solution design responsibilities.