Throughout my career, I have encountered many, many sales people and sales managers who believe that dashboards will magically improve their results. It never works out for them. Dashboards can improve sales but the users have to think of them the right way.
We will start with sales people and cover sales managers tomorrow.
Sales people want the magic list of to appear when they open their CRM and the dashboard appears. This is actually starting to happen with some of the new marketing tools like hubspot and marketo that do a good job of pushing leads into the pipeline when the lead gets hot enough. Depending on your marketing/sales cycle these tools can be very effective.
But these marketing services only fix the front end of the process. Everything still ends up in the pipeline where a disciplined sales process is needed. We recommend two things as it relates to CRM:
- Focus on the follow up list. Sales is a contact sport. The sales rep needs to keep touching the opportunity at the right time with the right information until it closes. If the sales rep loses contact for 3 months*, the momentum is lost, or worse, the prospect buys from someone else while your company is sleeping. The follow up list is everything. The dashboard has a list of 10 activities or a graphic showing the shades of your opportunity stages. They are not bad tools, but too often they distract from the real prize — effective use of a follow up list in the CRM.**
- Setting goals and helping sales people evaluate themselves against their goals and against other people. If you run a mile and don’t time yourself and then next day repeat it but time yourself, on which day will you run faster? If you run with others versus by yourself, do you run faster? A sales person who is competitive (hopefully all of yours are) will work harder when they get regular feedback on progress versus goals as well as their rank versus the rest of the team. Boru has some vtiger dashboards to facilitate this, but in the absence of these you can give the sales reps filters and reports to fill the information vacuum.
However you do it, give it a try. You won’t be disappointed.
*Note: the follow up process can be supplemented in Vtiger with workflows. Boru has an excellent vtiger workflow extension that makes it easy to set up drip campaigns to supplement phone follow up.
**Boru has a Vtiger extension called Turbo list that makes the calling process much easier and more effective for salespeople.