As a CEO, an Executive Leadership Team or the driving force behind the sales function, sales performance is never far from the top of the agenda.
At some point you’ve probably thought about conducting a sales audit, either for added insight into how to optimise/maximise the sales function or to solve a particular sales challenge.
Maybe you’re struggling with a sales challenge now and just don’t know what to try next?
Then it may be a good time to look at some of the many benefits on running a sales audit for new business sales, business development or account management teams.
Especially if sales growth, competitive advantage, or even good old fashioned ‘not wasting opportunities and cash’ are on your agenda then regular sales audits should be on your agenda too, because I haven’t even seen a sales audit that didn’t have a 100% plus ROI. You can see why when you look at some of the reasons below!
After all, if sales isn’t working well, then pretty soon, nothing else will be either! Sales is the lifeblood of the business.
Conducting a Sales Audit – The health of your sales function is a leading indicator of the sustainability of your business.
And, like any other vital component of your organisation, the sales function requires regular assessment and fine-tuning to maximize its potential.
Times changes, buyers change, competitors come and go, economics of running the sales team change…the truth is, the bar typically gets higher.
And that means that standing still is not an option.
So how do you make sure your sales function is keeping up?
This is where a sales audit comes into play.
A sales audit is a thorough examination of your sales process, sales funnel, sales pipeline, sales forecast, sales strategy, and overall performance. There are untold sales audit benefits felt at all levels of the organisation from front lines sales people to team leaders, managers, the board and investors.
Findings that impact from marketing through to debt collection, advocacy, retention, churn and brand.
Sales Audit Benefits
Here are 40 compelling reasons why every CEO and Senior Leadership Team should conduct a sales audit across their sales and customer interfacing functions:
- Revenue Boost: A sales audit identifies hidden opportunities and inefficiencies, which can lead to an immediate boost in revenue generation.
- Improved Sales Efficiency: Discover areas where the sales process can be streamlined, leading to increased efficiency and reduced wastage of resources.
- Enhanced Customer Experience: Understanding customer interactions better can help you create a more personalised and satisfying experience for your clients.
- Competitive Advantage: Uncover unique selling points that set your sales team apart from competitors and leverage them to gain an edge.
- Better Sales Team Performance: Identify skill gaps within the sales team and provide targeted training to improve their performance.
- Optimized Sales Funnel: Pinpoint weaknesses in your sales funnel and optimize it to convert more leads into customers.
- Greater Conversion Rates: Implementing insights from a sales audit can lead to higher conversion rates and improved lead-to-customer ratios.
- Effective Lead Generation: Discover new lead generation strategies and fine-tune existing ones for optimal results.
- Improved Sales Forecasting: A sales audit helps you develop more accurate sales forecasts, aiding in better business planning.
- Alignment of Sales and Marketing: Ensure that sales and marketing efforts are in sync to create a cohesive customer journey.
- Data-Driven Decision Making: Rely on data and insights from the sales audit to make informed business decisions.
- Identifying Ineffective Sales Channels: Determine which sales channels are underperforming and reallocate resources to more productive avenues.
- Target Market Refinement: Refine your target market based on the audit findings, enabling more focused marketing efforts.
- Pricing Strategy Review: Evaluate your pricing strategy to ensure it aligns with market demands and customer expectations.
- Sales Process Standardisation: Standardise your sales process for consistency and scalability.
- Employee Motivation: Understand the factors that motivate your sales team, fostering a more engaged and driven workforce.
- Customer Retention: Identify opportunities to increase customer retention and loyalty through better sales strategies.
- Sales Technology Utilization: Analyse the efficiency of sales tools and technology, optimising their usage for maximum impact.
- Risk Mitigation: Spot potential risks in your sales process and develop contingency plans to mitigate them.
- New Market Penetration: Explore new markets with the insights gained from the sales audit, expanding your business reach.
- Strategic Partnerships: Identify potential strategic partners that can enhance your sales efforts.
- Brand Perception: Assess how your sales process influences the perception of your brand in the market.
- Sales Team Collaboration: Encourage collaboration within your sales team by leveraging the audit findings.
- Long-Term Growth Planning: Utilize the sales audit to plan for sustainable, long-term growth.
- Enhancing Upselling and Cross-selling: Discover opportunities to upsell and cross-sell to existing customers effectively.
- Customer Feedback Integration: Integrate customer feedback from the sales process to improve overall product/service offerings.
- Sales Goal Alignment: Ensure sales goals align with the overall objectives of the organization.
- Territory Optimisation: Optimise sales territories for maximum coverage and efficiency.
- Sales Team Incentives: Design performance-based incentives that motivate and align with business objectives.
- Cost Optimization: Identify cost-saving opportunities within the sales function without compromising results.
- Enhanced Sales Reporting: Create more comprehensive and insightful sales reports based on audit findings.
- Sales Training Effectiveness: Evaluate the effectiveness of sales training initiatives and refine them accordingly.
- Sales Forecast Accuracy: Improve the accuracy of sales forecasts through better data analysis.
- Sales Cycle Evaluation: Understand the length of your sales cycle and develop strategies to shorten it.
- Customer Persona Refinement: Refine customer personas based on the data gathered from the sales audit.
- Sales Process Compliance: Ensure that the sales team complies with established processes and guidelines.
- Sales Metrics Alignment: Align sales metrics with overall business KPIs to track performance effectively.
- Win/Loss Analysis: Conduct win/loss analysis to identify trends and patterns in sales successes and failures.
- Crisis Preparedness: Use audit insights to create sales strategies that are adaptable to different market conditions.
- Long-Term Sustainability: Embrace continuous sales audits as a means to maintain competitiveness and long-term sustainability.
Conduct a Sales Audit with Morton Kyle
Imagine your sales team operating at its peak performance, consistently exceeding targets, and effortlessly closing deals.
Picture your revenue soaring to new heights, your conversion rates increasing, reduced sales cycle durations, increased client spend and average order values…and your competitors scratching their heads about success in the industry.
Achieving such outcomes requires a deep understanding of your sales processes, identifying areas of improvement, and leveraging strategic insights to enhance your overall sales effectiveness.
That’s precisely where our sales audit comes into play.
This meticulously crafted process involves a holistic evaluation of your sales operations, strategies, and execution, aimed at uncovering hidden opportunities and unleashing your team’s full potential. We have helped countless CEOs uncover hidden revenue streams, streamline their sales processes, and achieve unprecedented growth through this highly tailored approach.
Here are some key additional key elements you can focus on when it comes to having Morton Kyle conduct your sales audit
Performance Management – the sales audit methodology lends itself to being an informal introduction of performance management within the sales function
CSI – It can herald the beginning of Continuous Sales Improvement
Meaningful Management Information – It builds critical sales dashboards and meaningful Balanced Scorecards that allow the saes function and senior exec team to align behind leading and lagging sales indicators
Positioning – it pays deep attention to positioning and the value added proposition your organisation delivers – this is probably one of the single most impactful elements of the sales audit
Cohesive Teams – it brings the sales function together to lift performance using transparency, trust, ambition and accountability
Better Ways of Working – it identifies sales best practice
Improves Leadership Range – it empowers the sales leaders to become leaders, coaches, trouble shooters and adopt situational leadership skills
Clarity of Vision – between the relationship between activities and actions and valuable and successful outcomes
Forecast Accuracy – no more melting sales forecast – building accuracy into forecast construction
Considering Scope When Conducting a Sales Audit
Not all sales audits include every single element of the audit. Of course, in any sales function, there are high levels of connectivity between all the moving parts.
If you’re looking at a specific sales challenge around new business generation (a really common challenge) then you might find that you’ll want you focus all of your efforts on the following:
A Sales Funnel Audit –
A sales funnel audit looks at how are you getting opportunities into the sales funnel.
It dives into the quality and quantity of opportunities and their specific sales channel characteristics in terms of some key characteristics. Namely:
- Average order values
- Sales cycle duration
- Life time value
- Conversion rate
- Win loss rates etc.
The sales funnel audit is very much designed to look at the effectiveness of the bridge between sales and marketing and driving a stronger understanding around marketing activities and spend vs results.
This kind of audit is great if you want to maximise the effectiveness of your marketing budget, and build some meaningful metrics and strategic alliances between sales and marketing!
A Sales Pipeline Audit –
A sales pipeline audit is very similar to the above but where as the sales funnel audit is sales and marketing focused, the sales pipeline audit is more focused on the capabilities within the sales team alone.
That might cover skills, behaviours, habits and systems, targets, lost sales, data usage, best practice, time management, product knowledge, management, culture, pipeline management etc within the sales team itself.
You sales pipeline audit assesses what kind of sales engine you have.
So whilst we look at the same numbers as above we look at it through the individual and sales team performance lens to identify individual performance profiles.
This is powerful if you’re looking to introduce elements of continuous sales improvement into your team, you want to increase levels of responsibility account-ability and engagement within the sales team or you’re looking to benchmark and develop other performance management initiatives, perhaps around incentives or call standards, activity levels etc
A sales pipeline audit is also an excellent way to clear out rubbish from the sales pipeline, set some ground rules for CRM use (not abuse), and help with sales forecasting.
Another common type of sales audit is
A Sales Forecast Audit –
The Sales Forecast audit is powerful if you find your sales forecast are wildly inaccurate, and melt like snow in the sun.
If you’re struggling to get a meaningful read on sales forecasting this this should be your first port of call.
A sales forecast audit is a useful tool if you find you have a bloated and unstable sales CRM and you’re just not getting the meaningful data you need out of the system.
Banks, Executive Teams and Investors rely on accurate sales forecast, so any instability in this area can be costly in terms of reputation and questions about ‘finger on the pulse’ management…a sales forecast audit can clear this up for you.
It’s also a great eye opener – unbiased and independent way – to understand if you really have the capability and capacity to deliver the business ambitions.
Sales Audit Benefits – Insights and Solutions – You’re in Control!
One of the biggest benefits from your Sales Audit – whichever audit you select (or they can be combined in a Sales Process Audit) is that you get the raw data, the curated data, the challenges scoped out, and via the Fast Action Pack and 30 Day Plan,.
That means you see how your current issues can be resolved – at which point you can take sole control to implement or you can look at a ‘done with you ‘ support package, or a ‘done for you’ support package.
It’s best to think about your sales audit as a heuristic and iterative process that seeks to discover and uncover the friction points to your sales growth and organisational success, rather than a root and branch exploration that is more academic than impactful! We are aiming for sales improvement!
Each sales audit is designed to your needs.
You sales find more details here – Morton Kyle Sales Audit
A Sales Audit Benefits Your People as Well as Your Bottom Line!
You’ll see growth in your:
- Sales Team as they identify revenue and value adding tasks that are directly related to positive results and outputs
- Your Sales Management Team as they get to understand how much power and control they really do have in achieving, and smashing, sales targets
- Prospects when they experience what it feels like to engage with your sales professionals as opposed to other sales teams using hit and run sales tactics
- The rest of the organisation when they realise that the sales forecasts are solid and not inclined to melt like snow on a sunny day
- Your board as they can have confidence in what sales are saying
- Your marketing team when they see their hard earned leads being converted at a much higher rate!
In conclusion, a sales audit can be just a one-time event; with full knowledge transfer to your internal team to drive the required changes, or it could be a rolling commitment of regular reviews.
You’re in control.
Organisations that conduct a sales audit on a regular basis find the insights invaluable in helping them develop and deliver on key strategic growth initiatives, as well as fostering a competitive spirit towards getting better in each audit cycle, especially wehn aligned with the quarterly reviews.
In the same way, we’ve had some breakthrough one off sales audits where the knowledge transfer around intel and skill has been transferred to internal management teams who have stepped up and held themselves accountable to implement and deliver.
Either way it’s a valuable integral part of your organisation’s growth strategy.
By regularly evaluating your sales function, you can make data-driven decisions, optimize performance, and maintain a competitive edge in a dynamic business landscape.
So, as a visionary leadership team you know that being armed with the correct information will lead to enhances, speedy decision making. It will ensure you are better able to conquer future challenges.
If you’d like to discuss how a sales audit can help drive your revenue, margin and growth contact Carol on 0779 002 1885 to see how having a greater understanding of what’s really happening in your sales and marketing function can help you., prioritise a sales audit today.
The sales audit benefits are broad and wise – we can build a package to support your aims, and unleash the full revenue and competitive potential in your sales function. Future-proofing your organisation and driving your business towards sustainable sales success.
Remember a sales audit benefits everyone!
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