Is Your CRM Cutting it for your Sales Team?

Authored by Chisom Uche on September 16, 2016

CRMs may be one of the most frustrating and yet crucial components for running a successful sales team. Without a CRM, information about your sales process would be dispersed, unorganized, and incomplete.A world without a CRM would be difficult for sales reps to keep track of how a deal is going and would force them to work fewer deals, much slower. However, using a CRM requires a lot of resources. You must pay for the licenses and the implementation, then you must take time away from your usual revenue-driving behaviors to make sure the CRM is properly set up to your liking, then you must make sure everyone is trained and using it, and then you have to take more time to analyze the data you now have because you have a CRM. So even after going through all of the necessary steps to make sure you CRM works, it is frustrating to realize that your CRM is still very limiting! Here's how to know if your sales CRM is enough.

1. Are You Confident That It Manages Your Sales Process?

Most CRM implementation teams will provide you with the default best practices for their tool, usually for a little extra money. These best practices are usually created by how the vendor utilized their product internally or how their average customer uses their product. However, your CRM needs to fit your sales process like a glove in order for it to  provide you value past being a data storage tool. If you aren't confident that your CRM truly represents your specific sales process then you can't feel confident in the analysis that it gives you about your sales performance either. After all, Aberdeen found that "just 20% of analytical minds are satisfied with the sophistication and firepower of their analytical capabilities." Odds are that if you're looking for answers in your CRM, you aren't finding them.

2. Do You Trust That Your Sales Team Uses It?

In order for a CRM to be useful, people have to use it. If only some people decide to use it then your CRM will present you with you misleading analytics. In July 2016, AGC Partners published a report where ToutApp found that "71% of sales reps think they spend too much time on data entry" so chances are that your sales team is not taking the time to input all of their deal information into the CRM. We have found that this is the main driver behind the "bad data in, bad data out" conundrum. For people to actually want to use the CRM, it has to take a lot less time to input the data which is currently not a capability most CRMs offer. Even if you do happen to get all of the data into your CRM, at some point you will want that data to work for you and that can be an ordeal in itself.

3. Can You Quickly Find the Information That You Need?

One of the reasons that most teams decide to invest in a CRM is to reduce the amount of time it takes a rep to sell. CRMs automatically accomplish that by being the main tool that sales teams rely on to store and recover data on their deals, but what about for sales teams that want to identify trends to improve in areas where they don't win as much as they should? Aberdeen did research and found that "49% of sales leaders are dissatisfied with their ability to access the data they need." This means that even if your entire team powers through their grievance of spending too much time to enter their information to the CRM, half will still have trouble accessing the data and using it to their strategic advantage.

In short, in most cases, just having a CRM will not suffice for your sales team. In fact, this is very evident through the number of acquisitions that Salesforce has made to bring in outside companies in order to improve their customers experience with the Salesforce CRM. So, since you now know that CRMs just don't cut it, it's time to go find tools to compliment your CRM and to make sure it is doing everything you need it to do. Luckily, we've made a guide to outline the tools that your sales team needs to be successful. TopOPPS is a tool that helps sales teams get the most out of their CRM by connecting sales forecasting and pipeline management with predictive analytics. Tools that can help streamline many sales functions are what will make your CRM a valuable asset. If you want to see what tools like ours can do for your CRM, please contact us!

Subscribe to our newsletter!

Leverage these best practices with automation and AI driven by TopOPPS

Learn how our customers are winning with artificial intelligence in their CRM:

  • Predictive Sales Forecasting
  • Automated Pipeline Management
  • Significantly More Updates from Reps

Watch Videos

More Recent Posts:

January 21, 2020

Best Practices for B2B Sales Pipeline and Forecast Management

New year, new blog series!   The new blog series will focus on “Best Practices for B2B Sales Pipeline and Forecast Management”.   This covers a big area so this series could take most of 2020 to complete and its frequency will be more often than once a month.    The reason for this blog series is companies continue to rely on human intuition and instinct to produce sales forecasts.  They continue to spend significant time managing, manually reviewing and updating the sales forecast despite advances in sales technology. ...

Sales Pipeline Management, AI for Sales, Guided Selling, best practices

January 21, 2020

Brainshark and TopOPPS Form Partnership to Combine Sales Readiness with AI-Driven Sales Pipeline and Forecast Management

The Integrated Solutions Will Provide Deep Insights into Pipeline Activity and Forecasting - Enabling Targeted Learning that Elevates Sales Performance WALTHAM, Mass. and ST. LOUIS, Jan. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Brainshark, Inc., the industry's only data-driven sales readiness platform, and TopOPPS, a leading provider of artificial intelligence (AI)-based sales pipeline management and forecast predictability solutions, today announced they have formed a strategic partnership. The partnership – which includes an integration of Brainshark and TopOPPS solutions – will empower sales organizations to deliver "in-the-moment" guidance that improves reps' skills at key points throughout the sales cycle. ...

AI for Sales, Sales Enablement, Guided Selling

December 13, 2019

Sales Superpowers Need 'In-Context' for Sales Engagement

  SiriusDecisions outlines “One Solution for Sales Superpowers”.  [Spoiler alert] - it is sales engagement.   If it is “the one solution” to supercharge your revenue engine, why isn’t it widely used?   Why isn’t it the most popular application in the “sales world”?  We will get back to that, but first lets make sure we are on the same page. Sales Engagement Defined  Sales engagement is defined as interactions that take place between the buyer and seller.  Sales engagement includes four core functions based on SiriusDecisions definition:  calling/dialing, email, calendarizing and reporting. ...

Sales Operations, Sales Tools, Sales Pipeline Management, Strategic Partnerships

November 25, 2019

Strengthening the CFO-CRO Relationship Through the Sales Forecast

  The sales forecast is the linchpin of a company’s future.  If it is right and can be trusted the companies’ operations run smoother and its financial stability is more secure.  Typically this isn't easy.  The sales forecasting process is shared by the Chief Revenue Officer[CRO] and the Chief Financial Officer[CFO].  The challenge is both have different motivations on its accuracy and neither have a complete vision of its drivers or its accuracy.   When the forecasting process is trusted and transparent it relieves stress on both the CRO and the CFO.  This blog reviews how this can be accomplished.  ...

Sales Operations, Sales Tools, Sales Pipeline Management, Strategic Partnerships

October 23, 2019

Where 1 + 1 = 3 in the Sales Application Stack - Sales Enablement

  In my previous blog I outlined 21 different sales technology categories for the Sales Application Stack .  These categories were consolidated from various industry analysts research. That blog highlighted the difference between data integration and application embedding and highlighted the benefits of application embedding and selecting software vendors who have strategic partnerships with other software providers in the CRM application space.   The concepts of application embedding needs to be expanded with the concept of “application in context”.  “Applications in context” is applications working “in context” with applications to solve a series of problems in a consistent and cohesive manner without derailing the users thought process. ...

Sales Operations, Sales Tools, Sales Pipeline Management, Strategic Partnerships

September 20, 2019

The Emperor [CRM] is Naked

  One of the things I like to track are stories I heard in kindergarten that persist through life.  The Emperor’s New Clothes is one of them.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been in meetings, listening to what is being discussed and ideas explored and wanted to yell out, “THE EMPEROR IS NAKED”. ...

Sales Operations, Sales Tools, Sales Pipeline Management, Strategic Partnerships

August 16, 2019

AI For Sales - Business Examples

  The last seven blogs provide a business-case approach to infusing AI through the entire sales process.  One of the purposes of this blog series was to demystify AI by using AI for Sales as an  example.  Media tends to portray AI as a magic bullet.  Actual implementations show the less “black box” an AI solution is and the more “glass box” approach, the more utility it provides to the user.  The utility is created by uncovering the key drivers of an outcome and managing those drivers to increase results. ...

Sales Operations, Sales Tools, Sales Pipeline Management, AI for Sales

August 6, 2019

TopOPPS + Outreach Galaxy: AI Enhanced Guided Selling to Increase Win Rates

  Ever had the situation where: an important sales opportunity is in danger because of inactivity and it goes unnoticed; the opportunity is sold but they don’t have the budget till next quarter so the sales rep needs to “stay close”; or the opportunity wants to buy but “isn’t there yet” and needs further ongoing education?   ...

Pipeline Optimization, Artificial Intelligence, Sales Pipeline Management, Guided Selling, guide winning behaviors