The most successful inside sales managers are experts at tracking and assessing the performance of their sales team. They go beyond simply measuring a salesperson’s total sales volume. Top inside sales managers dive into variables such as the total number of times a salesperson attempts to contact each lead and the total amount of time spent on the telephone. Most important, they know the difference between underperformers who may benefit from additional training and underperformers who should be let go. Below are eight strategies for measuring inside sales performance used by successful inside sales managers.
1) Track the total sales volume produced by each salesperson. One of the most common ways to measure a salesperson’s performance is simply to calculate the salesperson’s gross sales volume. Many sales managers are willing to ignore a low total number of closed sales as long as the total dollar volume of closed sales is high.
2) Calculate the total number of sales closed by each salesperson. Unlike the process of tracking a salesperson’s total annual sales volume, the total number of closed sales is not reported in terms of dollars or revenue. In fact, an inside salesperson could feasibly have the highest total gross sales volume on a team but the lowest number of total closed sales. Total closed sales reflects the number of individual conversions achieved by a salesperson.
3) Monitor the number of times a salesperson dials the phone for each lead. Effort and persistence are key requirements for success for an inside salesperson. In the world of inside sales, the best indicator of persistence is a salesperson’s repeated efforts to contact a lead. A salesperson who makes seven or eight attempts to contact a lead is more apt to close a sale than the person who only makes one or two attempts to contact a customer.
4) Track the total time (inbound and outbound) spent on the phone. The total amount of time spent on the phone is important because it demonstrates a pattern of ongoing customer contact and an effort to connect with prospective clients. Generally speaking, salespeople who place a high priority on making contact with prospects are more apt to generate a high sales volume than those salespeople with low outbound call statistics.
5) Identify underperformers. In a nutshell, underperformers are those salespeople who produce a low overall sales volume and few conversions. Determining why a person is underperforming is even more critical, as this information helps a sales manager determine who may improve with additional guidance and who is simply not a good fit for inside sales. Common reasons for underperformance include the following:
- Insufficient training
- Difficulty mastering key concepts
- Low confidence
- A lack of self-motivation
- Poor utilization of time
- Employee disengagement
6) Determine which underperformers may benefit from additional training. Once you have identified your underperformers, you need to delve into this group of poor producers and identify which of those underperformers may be able to flourish with help. Of the types of underperformers listed above, those who lack training or have a hard time mastering key concepts are the most likely to improve with additional support.
7) Screen for underperformers who should be let go. Sometimes all the training in the world will not help an underperformer improve. Salespeople who will most likely not benefit from additional help include those who exhibit the following:
- Low or absent levels of motivation
- Disengagement or a lack of interest in their jobs
- Poor attendance or misuse of company time or resources
8) Enlist the support of an industry professional. The best way to monitor inside sales performance is to seek the guidance of an experienced industry specialist. A trained consultant can help your organization develop a strategic plan to monitor and improve inside sales performance.
So, HOW do you track all of these data points?
We’ve listed data points that can be really hard to track, but most off-the-shelf CRM systems either do not track the data, or it is hidden from you. The custom software tools that we build give you the ability to effectively track the data as well as compare and contrast how they change over time. Additionally we have the ability dig into your current CRM to extract the data that it is hiding from you to help you troubleshoot your team’s effectiveness and implement solutions as needed.
Contact us to find out how our customized software solutions can help your inside sales team flourish and surpass its goals. We look forward to hearing from you!