When implemented alongside strategic training, tools, and engagement techniques, sales operations help sales teams become more productive and efficient. The result is a positive impact on top and bottom line revenue performance and your revenue operations as a whole.
What is sales operations?
The objective of a modern sales operations team is to speed up the sales cycle and enable reps to close deals faster. Success relies on the sales operations team’s ability to continuously streamline this process.
Much like how a supply chain operation functions, a sales operations team works behind the scenes to ensure that the many parts of a sales team move smoothly as one. This includes everything from implementing key sales technology to administering compensation.
Why are sales operations important?
A sales operations team’s job is to help the sales team run more efficiently. By developing sales strategies and handling technical functions, a sales operations team allows reps to focus on revenue-driving activities and sales managers to concentrate on coaching and supporting their teams.
How is sales operations different from sales enablement?
Sales enablement focuses on preparing reps for buyer engagements by managing sales training and readiness programs, sales content, and other knowledge-based programs. Sales operations, on the other hand, focuses on the tactical, day-to-day activities that a sales team needs to run smoothly, such as administering a CRM.
Typically, this means that sales enablement is primarily concerned with the awareness, consideration, and early elements of purchase stages of the buyer’s journey. In contrast, sales operations tend to be involved closer to the purchase stage because of the highly technical focus.
Core responsibilities of sales operations
Modern sales ops professionals play a vital role in the success of a sales organization by staying ahead of problems and enabling the sales team to focus on selling.
The list below summarizes the technical and analytical motions that sales operations provides so that reps can move through the sales process more efficiently:
- Growth forecasts of sales territories
- Formulation and evaluation of sales incentive and compensation plans
- Sales process optimization and lead management
- Implementation and administration of sales tools
- Analysis and evaluation of performance metrics
- Development of sales and revenue strategies
- Planning and strategizing go-to-market plans
- Sales training, including content, process and training events (SKOs)
- Content planning, mapping, management and analysis
- Sales process, including process performance analytics
- Sales playbook
- Customer engagement tools, processes, and analysis
- Process, tools and training to increase sales efficiency
Common sales operations roles
A variety or roles perform these responsibilities.
- Sales Operations Specialist. Highly technical, this person is responsible for basic sales platform administration and data analysis.
- Sales Operations Analyst/Sales Operations Manager. This individual is responsible for analyzing data in order to deliver strategic recommendations to sales operations, strategy, and initiatives.
- Senior Sales Operations Analyst/Senior Sales Operations Manager. Someone with a deep understanding of sales processes and technology, this person is comfortable optimizing those systems.
- Manager of Sales Operations/Director of Sales Operations. As a manager, this role is the hand guiding the execution of your sales operations strategy.
Extending the capacity of sales operations
Sometimes you need help to execute new projects to support initiatives like improving workflow and accuracy reporting, automating selling or non-selling tasks, or creating development, compensation, and incentive plans.
A newly implemented sales operations team should begin addressing these goals by auditing the state of their CRM, delivering key integrations, building alignment with marketing, and developing a forecasting strategy.
A more mature sales operations team should focus on optimization rather than implementation. This means reevaluating current processes and tools to see where adjustments can be made, whether that’s giving your CRM dashboards a facelift or adjusting compensation plans based for growing teams.
In either case, on-demand expertise delivered by staff augmentation providers like us can help extend the capacity of the sales operations team for periods of time. Learn how we provided outsourced sales services to help Scope 5 achieve revenue goals. Contact us today to start a conversation.