It's 10:00 PM. Sales Managers, do you know where your sales pipeline bottlenecks are?

Each year, companies must take a careful look at the areas where they can improve profitability.

Inevitability, sales managers will look to evaluating the efficiency of the sales force, as salaries and other expenses in this area can all to easily become a money pit. A lack of efficiency in the sales pipeline can cost acompany thousands if not millions of dollars each year. As a sales or operations manager, you must be regularly looking to sales pipeline analytics to effectively utilize your sales force while making the best use of company money, thus maximizing ROI.

A reoccurring complaint from many sales reps is that they spend far too much valuable time on administrative work rather than being on the phones and/or spending time on client retention. A sales rep's strength lies with client interaction and not in administrative activities. With a well thought out sales plan, any issues that hinder a sales rep from completing their goals could be easily analyzed and ironed out on a regular basis—before the issue becomes a larger problem.

Targets as well as incentives drive a sales force. If you are not providing your sales force with the right information at the appropriate time, they may not be motivated or even have the right tools to hit their targets—which hinders sales growth. How can you better equip your sales force with the right information? Sales pipeline analytics are crucial in evaluating data related to leads and how they fall into the pipeline. Whether you are dealing with a dead deal, or movement on a hot lead, analytics will help you look at performance data and recognize what needs to be done to complete set goals. Information that is given and analyzed in real time can work to prohibit any bottleneck issues within the sales process.

Any successful sales force utilizes sales pipeline analytics to make necessary adjustments in all areas. An important complimentary effort to analyzing sales metrics is group collaboration. Your sales force is on the front line of all transactions and can provide invaluable feedback as to what is taking place within the organization. In addition to internal employees, outside consultants and experts can provide an insight that will improve your sales force growth. It is important that as a sales manager, you are utilizing all necessary consultants and metrics on a regular basis to take a realistic look at what is taking place in your sales force. This will give you the foresight to make necessary adjustments.

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