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Can Millennials Lead the Way in Sales Productivity?

The next class of sales leaders is coming.

Increasing sales productivity has been an ongoing challenge for both sales professionals and sales management. Organizations have spent millions on Sales Force Automation (SFA) tools attempting to increase client facing activities and decrease non-selling tasks.

Despite the evolution and advancement in CRM technology, implementations have fallen short of expectations and, therefore, use of these tools has had mixed results.

It's shocking to learn that CRM systems typically only experience 50 percent user adoption. As a result, its impact on collaboration, alignment, visibility and sales productivity is a bit cloudy.

Can Gen M (Millennial/Mobile) have an impact?

"In the next eight years, 40 percent of everybody working in the US can retire. And the implications of that—swapping out 40 percent of the workforce—will shake up the workplace in some radical ways." - Mark Hurd, Oracle CEO, 2015

With "Silver Tsunami" slowly approaching, Millennials or Gen M are stepping in to fill employment opportunities, especially within sales.

Born between 1982 and 2003, and representing roughly 30 percent of the United States population, the Millennial generation is described as independent, sociable, civic minded and technologically savvy. Due to their dependency on and use of technology, support of mobile applications such as mobile CRM (mCRM) is more important than ever. According to Gartner, there was a 30 percent increase in mCRM access via tablets by sales professionals, and 35 percent of businesses have been moving toward mobile CRM applications.

SFA technology in the form of mCRM can be used in a multitude of ways by the sales force, therefore resulting in increased utilization of CRM solutions—the lift for which sales organizations need to carefully consider and plan.

The convergence of social, mobile, and cloud technologies has enabled sales professionals to access customer information anytime, anywhere. With the many options in smartphones, tablets, and mobile applications, today's business-to-business (B2B) salesperson is more mobile and can respond quickly and more efficiently to both customers' and prospects' needs. Mobile technology can enhance communication and provide more efficient access to customer information. mCRM can also increase collaboration and internal alignment with marketing, management and customer service. With over 35% of businesses moving toward an mCRM strategy, Mobile CRM cannot be ignored as a business accelerator.

According to a recent research report, global users for mobile devices grew to over 5.6 billion. The same report also reported that by the end of 2018 84% of the world population will be using mobile technology.

Where can mCRM have its biggest impact?

Coordination between different departments is critical to developing ways to meet the needs of today's knowledgeable customer and delivering a solution to meet their needs. Improvement in collaboration between sales and departments such as marketing, management, and pre-sales support leads to improved organizational performance. From a sales perspective, traditional CRM technology has had some success in enabling salespeople to collaborate with others within the organization.

The advancement of mobile technology in the form of mCRM gives sales professionals the ability to gather and disseminate customer information more efficiently anytime, anywhere. mCRM technology provides an effective way to increase collaboration between the sales professional and their buyers the firm's internal functional areas. Utilizing mCRM enables sales professionals to more efficiently communicate internally with their peers and management. The Millennial Generation led the way in connecting and networking through the use of social media technology. The same holds true for the mCRM movement. Millennials have embraced mobile technology in collaborated with other both professionally and personally.

Increasing sales productivity has been a challenge for both sales professionals and sales management. Sale professionals spend over 30% of their time on non-selling activities: researching, looking for client information, updating forecasts. What if these administrative tasks could be completed right at your fingertips?

Organizations are overcoming these challenges by investing in technology initiatives to enable their sales force to do more with less. Sales technology, in the form of mCRM, have enabled professionals to be more productive in a mobile environment. Nucleus research found that 74% of organizations have enabled sales professionals to access the CRM system via mCRM application 2012. The same survey found mCRM increased sales productivity by 14.6%. Sales productivity is measured by increased number of face-to-face meetings with clients, increased number of calls to prospects, and increased time uncovering new selling opportunities. Millennials are connected 24/7. By enabling the millennial sales professional to have more information at their fingertips through the use of mCRM applications, they can spend less time on administrative tasks and more time upselling and cross selling.

Overall CRM Use:
CRM solutions are enterprise-wide technologies that support an organization's operational and analytic functions. Analytical functions include aggregating and analyzing customer information to improve business decisions and actions. For example, salespeople can use CRM systems to identify underserved market segments or identify opportunities for cross-selling products. The value of a CRM system, though, is largely dependent on whether or not salespeople are using the system and adding information about customers, opportunities, and activities.

The use of mCRM can significantly increase the frequency and amount of information that salespeople record in their current CRM. As more information is captured, CRM becomes more useful for sales people of all generations to manage their day-to-day activities. As salespeople record data, the CRM system becomes more useful from an analytic/strategic perspective to both salespeople and sales managers due to the availability of information that can be analyzed.

Millennials increased adoption and use of mCRM can lead to greater CRM system usage by sales and sales managers across the organization. Ultimately, this increased usage will lead to favorable outcomes from CRM technology investments.

mCRM will improve overall salesperson performance through increased user adoption, increased productivity and more efficient collaboration. mCRM enables sales forces to store, retrieve, analyze, and react to customer needs in real time… anytime, anywhere.

Sales managers...The Next Class of Sales Leaders is coming...And they are no stranger to mobile technology...Are you providing the right tools to increase sales productivity and to support your team's sales success?

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