When in the diagnostic phase of improving sales performance for clients we need to gather certain data sets together. The sales management will often ask if we can provide a checklist to help organise the assembling of the critical data. We thought it might be interesting to publish our checklist below:
- An up to date organisation chart of the sales organisation.
- Role profiles, candidate profiles and performance contract examples for all in scope positions.
- Examples of agendas and actions points from recent sales meetings.
- A copy of the sales strategy.
- An understanding about decision rights to do with pricing, margin control, discounts and any other (sales) controllable variables.
- An understanding of the current CRM and how effectively it’s integrated into the sales work flow.
- Sales pipeline/funnel data showing the critical stages of the sales process and the current conversion ratios – by individual and averages.
- An extract of customer visit reports and account reviews, with examples of customer account plans.
- How customers are segmented.
- How prospects are targeted and qualified.
- Sales collateral around the Customer Value Proposition, and supporting promotional materials.
- Current incentive schemes, how they are calibrated and aligned to the required outcomes.
- The performance management system including how effective the consequences framework is covering the spectrum of outcomes, high performance through average to under performance.
- Personal development plans, succession and career planning.
- The market intelligence system including competitor differentiation.
- Any competitive/market PESTLE and SWOT analysis data.
With this data a real understanding can be gained about the maturity of the sales organisation and an insight into its strengths and weaknesses. Often the act of data gathering becomes a catalyst for understanding root cause problems that further inform the work, sometimes taking it to a different direction. For instance, we were asked to design a sales academy but from the data gathering phase quickly realised that issues around the design of the sales organisation was significantly inhibiting growth, so this was addressed quickly and effectively.