Many startup businesses rely on their sales reps to bring in new customers and revenue. The role of the sale rep is to meet with potential new clients and discuss their needs. They can then suggest how their firm can help address these needs with their products and services.
The thing is, some startups have little experience of managing field sales staff. As a result, sales reps aren’t as productive and efficient at their work as they might expect. If that paints a familiar portrait, don’t worry because you aren’t alone!
The good news is you can do something about it. These savvy tips will help your sales reps to stay productive.
Ensure your field sales staff have the latest technology
It’s no secret that we all live in a digital age. Most of us would feel lost without our smartphones and computers! It might shock you to learn that some startups forget to furnish sales reps with the latest tech! When that happens, several problems are likely to occur.
First of all, field sales staff have no way of directly contacting the office or their clients. They won’t be willing to use their personal cell phones for cost and privacy reasons. Second, they cannot review important contracts and documents on the go. That means deals can often get delayed as the rep has to go back to the office first.
And, third, sales reps will have to rely on pen and paper. You might not think that’s such a bad thing. But, it’s catastrophic if you want them to collaborate with other team members with ease! Plus, it’s easier to lose a sheet of paper than a laptop or tablet.
Today’s modern technology isn’t as expensive as it once was. Even if your startup is on a tight budget, you could opt for secondhand gadgets. There’s no excuse not to invest in the latest tech for your field sales staff.
Plan appointments and direct sales reps using technology
It’s one thing to use a CRM system to arrange meetings and appointments. But, what if other people arrange them on behalf of the sales staff as well?
In such scenarios, it makes sense to use collaborative technology. In layman’s terms, this is software and hardware that everyone can use at the same time. Staff members can view live, up-to-date information on meetings. By everyone using one system, there’s a lower risk of meeting clashes.
Technology can help with appointment planning in other ways too. For example, telematics can help you direct your field staff to customers in a logical way. Using GPS, those systems can tell sales reps where to go for their next appointments.
There are many providers of that technology around these days. It makes sense only to use the best vehicle telematics company to save on cost and time.
Keep internal meetings to a minimum
In the workplace, one of the biggest wastes of time is attending meetings. Sure, some meetings are essential, especially when talking to clients. But, internal ones between staff members aren’t always important.
There are many other ways to communicate with staff without taking them away from their work. Email is one notable example. The telephone is another.
Of course, they might appear as impersonal means of communication to many startup owners. As your field reps are on the road a lot, you could instead opt for video conferences. Using software like Skype, you can talk to one or more sales reps at the same time. The beauty is, none of you have to be in the same location to make that happen!
All participants need is an Internet connection and a computer or mobile device. Setting up voice conferencing is quick and simple to do. And, in many cases, it won’t cost your startup a penny.
I recommend keeping such meetings to the bare minimum. Perhaps you could limit proceedings to a once-weekly meeting.
Don’t micro-manage your sales reps
Your sales staff will achieve their best work if you leave them to it. Don’t be an annoying micro-manager. No-one wants their boss breathing down their neck all day long!
Instead, you should give your sales staff the freedom to carry out their work. Sure, they might have deadlines they need to meet. But, as long as they don’t overrun those deadlines, how they prefer to work should be up to them.
I hope you enjoyed reading today’s article on increasing productivity for your sales staff. Thanks for checking it out!