4 key areas for driving sales operations efficiency

Sales teams have had a tough year, adjusting to the remote working world on top of pre-existing challenges like dealing with paperwork and lengthy signoff processes. These days, sales reps need all the help they can get. With that in mind, we introduce four areas where you can drive sales operations efficiency to make life easier for your reps. You can help them concentrate on what they’re really good at – sales – instead of being mired in admin. Let’s get started.

1. Updating and sending forms

Order processing teams everywhere are still manually entering data into forms. It’s a hefty workload, and when docs with errors bounce back to be re-done, it just adds more water to the flood.

The frustration for sales teams is that all this data usually already exists in the CRM tools like Salesforce, but they lack the ability to move that information from one place to the other. Thus, processing forms involves a lot of manual copy and paste tasks; laborious, dull, and not a great use of your talented team’s time. Ultimately, it’s a drain on the revenue efficiency of your sales team.

Now technology can do the hard work:

  • Design your new and improved form updating process with Nintex Promapp®
  • Automate population of data in PDFs via Nintex Drawloop DocGen® for Salesforce
  • Ensure that each new, filled-out form is tagged with the appropriate CRM references
  • Connect Excel to populate SKU names, item quantities, and perform calculations

Once you’ve built your process, it can be launched with the press of a button. And once the new, updated PDF has been created, it can then be automatically routed to the deals desk for approval. Once approved, it can be auto-routed further down the chain – for instance to a reseller for fulfillment. Simple, fast, and error-free.

2. Streamlining your renewal process

Many businesses, such as those providing ongoing services, depend upon renewals. And with these renewals come their very own extensive workload. Quotes need to be created, customers or partners need to be engaged via email or other channels, and every deal has to be chased all the way up to the final documents are signed.

Not only can a slow, labor-intensive renewal process put a strain on your team, but it also negatively impacts the customer experience. And as your business grows, and renewals increase, that just means more work added to the pile. With a manual renewal process, the only option is to hire more staff to deal with the work, which takes a big bite out of the profits that were your very reason to expand in the first place.

So, what’s the solution? Automation. Here are some steps you can take:

  • Map out the renewals process you want for staff and customers in Promapp®
  • Program Salesforce fields to count down the days until a contract expires
  • Create email templates for customer/partner email communications
  • Design the user experience and workflows covering all renewal scenarios
  • Set staff notifications and auto-generated customer emails at certain countdown points

A lot of the time, attention, and hassle can now be taken out of engaging with customers and chasing up deals. Quotes can even be automatically sent out, using Nintex Sign® to collect customers’ signatures digitally. Once the eSignature has been taken, Salesforce can be automatically updated, and the deal forwarded for order processing.

Automation allows the whole renewals process to be streamlined and expedited – a great increase in sales operations efficiency. If you’d like to explore automated renewals further, read our whitepaper, which goes into much greater depth on the subject.

3. Changing legal language on documents

Ensuring a quote document has the correct legal wording can be time-consuming. Documents go back and forth between sales and legal teams while amendments are manually made, which inhibits the sales process. Version control issues and errors add more wasted time, and a lack of governance over the amendment process can mean further holdups and mix-ups.

However, this is an area ripe for making changes that drive sales operations efficiency. Using workflow automation technology and digital forms, the entire legal approval process can be overhauled and expedited—a significant boost for sales ops revenue efficiency:

  • Your sales rep pushes a button and a digital form is triggered
  • The sales rep views all the standard terms and selects those that apply
  • The rep provides edit suggestions and other details for the legal team
  • The form is submitted and automatically routed to legal
  • Staff in the legal team are alerted via an email
  • A case is automatically created in Salesforce

Once approved, the amended terms are automatically recorded in Salesforce, the case is closed, and records are updated to show that the quote has undergone a customization of its legal terms. Finally, the rep who made the request is automatically notified with a status update – amended and approved.

4. Mass updates of quotes

There may be times when you need to make sweeping changes to stock-keeping units (SKUs) right across your offering. Some SKUs may be discontinued, and others may have their pricing or terms adjusted.

The problem is, as soon as you change an SKU, you must also remember to amend the corresponding quote, either active pipeline or renewal. Depending on how many you have, this could be a mammoth task for your sales reps. But – you’ve guessed it – this is another area where you can achieve greater sales operations efficiency.

This time, you’ll be using robotic process automation (RPA). First, you need to create a botflow™ to run the entire process, using a list of the quotes that need to be updated. Then the bot (software robot) will do the following for each quote within your configure, price, quote (CPQ) system:

  • Find the record of the quote to be changed
  • Remove the discontinued SKU from that record
  • Add the new SKU to the record as a replacement
  • Amend pricing and other details accordingly
  • Finalize the record in your CPQ system
  • Synchronize the quote record to the opportunity

Bots work fast. And, unlike a human employee, they don’t get tired, bored, or annoyed by the time they’ve amended their 300th record. What’s more, unlike a fatigued staff member, they don’t make mistakes. They handle the burden of high-volume repetitive work so your team doesn’t have to.

The human benefits of increasing sales operations efficiency

Lowering costs and improving customer experiences are all very valuable. But the human benefits of increased sales operations efficiency are perhaps where the difference is most visible and keenly felt. It means taking away onerous workloads that don’t make the best use of your reps’ skills and giving them more time to focus on what they became salespeople to do. You can’t put a price on that.

 

 

If you’d like to learn more about how Nintex can help you improve sales operations efficiency, you can watch our video from expert Sumeet Wadhva. You can also get in touch with our team to discuss the possibilities, or try Nintex for yourself with a free trial.

 

 

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