Mobility in Sales: How To Get There And What To Expect
The world is going mobile. Consumers are embracing the technology. The co-working and mobile workforces are implementing it into their daily tasks. Leaders in every industry are trying to harness its power. But mobility is still very new and many are not sure how to fully utilize it. They are exploring how it can fit into current processes and systems and which mobility in sales technology is right for them.
For many companies, the most common sense place for mobility is in the sales team. It can be incredibly useful for a team that regularly goes out on the road to meet with clients in person or to see the latest changes in industry trade shows and events. However, mobility is not a one-size-fits-all technology solution. Sales teams are unique and different teams need to know how to approach mobility implementation in a way that will work for them and their clients.
Sales team mobility is more than just a few apps on a device. It is a new business strategy and a refined sales approach. It takes planning and change. The main reason for this is that mobility is not just an ad hoc solution. It is an integrated system that is meant to better serve the sales team, customers, and suppliers in a much
more effective way than ever before. It enables the sales team to achieve the business’ goals, making it essential to look at mobility and how it is integrated from a more holistic perspective.
Gaining Better Insight Into The Sales Team
When making mobility choices for the sales team, it is necessary to gain a full view and understanding of the dynamics of the sales team. This includes breaking down the daily tasks, responsibilities, and goals of both the sales representatives and the sales managers.
There are three main components of any sales manager’s job. First, they must be able to make quick decisions. Second, they need technology that enables them to multitask at all times. Third, they should have the tools that allow them to deal with both left and right brain issues. All three of these job components can also be broken into skill sets that a sales manager needs in order to succeed. They need to be able to speak and communicate easily and naturally, develop insightful projection reports, discuss daily sales, create sales strategies, and deliver creative insights. When equipped with the right technology, sales managers can combine these tasks to empower the sales team to be more productive.
The rest of the sales team has one main component to their job—they must convert prospects into customers. The tasks surrounding this component are many. Much of their time is spent selling on the phone, over email, or in face-to-face meetings. Another significant portion is spent on lead generation and account research. And then there are the service calls, travel, training, meeting, and additional administrative paperwork. The main concern when it comes to the sales team is inefficiencies from the tasks outside of selling (i.e. administration, meetings, etc). According to a recent report from the McKinsey Global Institute, the average sales team member will spend over 2,000 hours every year in meetings, emailing, making calls, and on similar administrative tasks. They will spend 19% of that time searching for necessary information, 14% on internal collaboration and communication, and 28% on emails. Enhancing mobility can significantly reduce the time spent on these low-value tasks.
In order to help managers raise productivity and reduce the bottlenecks in sales, the right mobility options should be chosen, implemented, and harnessed.
Creating A Mobility Roadmap
In order to gain this holistic perspective and stay on track with the changes that a mobility integration will bring, it is paramount to develop a mobility roadmap. The following provides a step-by-step process that will allow every unique sales team to create a mobility process that works best for them.
1. Examine The Potential
Sales teams that are going to implement mobility need to first understand the potential that mobility has to offer. They should understand exactly why and how mobility would help them to become more effective, the budget they have to spend on mobility efforts, the precise tasks or processes that should be mobile-enabled, who will oversee the project, and how they will measure the end result. To gain a full understanding of any of these factors, the individuals involved in the planning must first understand their goals.
2. Create A Steering Committee
The job of the steering committee is to identify the vision for the sales team mobility initiative and the steps that need to be taken in order for that vision to be fully realised. This will include communication and training development, technology choices, and monitoring guidelines.
The steering committee is a planning group. They will design the mobility roadmap for the sales team. This means it is essential to have at least one sales professional in the group. Ideally, though, there should be a more customer-facing sales employee and an individual who is in a more managerial role on the sales team. Additionally, there should be an IT professional and one of the C-level executives. The IT employee can help to guide the technology choices and feasibility, while the executive can give the committee autonomy.
It can also be helpful to bring in an outside consultant—or at least rely on the opinion of published experts. This information can be essential in identifying the best practices for sales team mobility, benchmarking the current sales team compared to competitors, assessing the gap, and picking the strategies that will help the sales team to gain the mobility it needs in order to close the gap and surpass the competition.
3. Educate The Steering Committee
Sales team mobility is an evolving technological field. To help create a comprehensive understanding of the possibilities and limitations that come along with the new processes, it is important for the steering committee to be fully informed. To accomplish this, holding an in-house workshop or sending the team for an outside informational session can be helpful. This will enable them to assess the sales team’s mobile readiness, in terms of both technology and business. This will include governance aspects, target users, measurement techniques, available technologies, and project management.
4. Choose The Technology
Once the steering committee is formed and they have been fully educated, they can begin to decide what mobility technology is right for the sales team. It will likely be necessary to define separate personas for the various sales roles—a sales manager may need different mobility options than a sales representative. After the personas
are developed, they can be fleshed out and assigned the right technology. This technology should include the device or devices and the software.
5. Lay Out The Roadmap
When the specifics of the technology and the team are clear, the steering committee can design the right roadmap. This roadmap should have a clear timeline, strategies for mobility acceptance, and communication guidelines. There should also be a hierarchy, where roles for oversight are assigned.
The Right Mobility Technology
While every sales team is unique, there are certain aspects of mobility technology that every steering committee should look for in sales team mobility tech. When the device and software provide these options, it will likely be a good fit for the team.
1. Connected Sales Activities
The mobility technology used should be a central hub for all sales information. It should allow managers and other team members to go to a single platform for everything they need, including customer data, sales negotiation evaluation, product information, and customer information management. At its core, the software should provide a birds-eye view of the sales process in a mobile way, including the management of predictions and insights, internal communication, the collection and assimilation of data, and the management of daily plans.
2. Better Oversight And Input Into Decision-Making And Strategy
One of the priorities of mobility should be to eliminate erroneous decision-making. In the past, without mobility, sales representatives could often be forced to make on-the-spot decisions. Sometimes these decisions aligned with company goals and sometimes they did not. Mobility removes this burden. It allows the sales team to stay in real-time contact with management, enabling their input on decisions. The best platforms will provide a clear strategy and easy communication, allowing the sales team to get the best information in real-time. Better access to this information will lead to better client relations.
Sales Team Mobility In Asia
Companies across Asia have already started adopting mobility solutions for their sales teams. Tech in Asia’s mobility solution cuts down low-value tasks by eight hours for the average sales team member. In terms of the bigger picture and the company vision, there have also been improvements. The business has seen 100% revenue growth in both of the two quarters since their mobility adoption.
Canon India made a similar mobility transformation in their sales team. Their 300-person sales team now gets leads sent directly to their mobile device, they can send price approval requests directly to managers with a push notification, and they are able to oversee all scheduling and expense reporting from a single platform. The mobility technology has increased productivity, created greater job satisfaction, and enhanced customer satisfaction.
Sales teams need the technology that will provide them with enhanced mobility and information in real time. Making this digital transformation can be difficult, so we created a Guide To Digital Transformation that we hope helps ease this process. Click the image below to find out more!