The End of the Silo: How to Organize your Enterprise to Be “Customer-Centric”
Did you know that acquiring a new customer is seven times more expensive than the cost of properly maintaining an existing relationship? (Kissmetrics) So why are sales organizations hyper-focused on new customer acquisition versus nurturing the customers they already have? Many businesses operate as loosely connected groups of silos; each focused on its own responsibilities. The silo-ed sales approach leads to an unhealthy focus on short-term ROI rather than long-term customer success.
In order to change the focus from short-term ROI to long-term, you must build your organizational structure around the client, making sure that each step in the sales process serves the ultimate goal of customer success. This change in focus is what makes an organization “customer-centric.” Instead of forcing customers to interact with a process that does not serve their interests, you should organize your processes to be adaptable and responsive to your customers’ needs. One way to facilitate this is through automating the sales process.
Here are seven customer-centric benefits of sales automation:
1. It democratizes account management. Rather than reserving the highest standards of service for key accounts, automating parts of the process enables your sales organization to apply those same standards to every single account.
2. It stops reps from gaming the system. How? With clear visibility into progress toward leading performance indicators, sales reps can compete amongst themselves to “win” the game instead of trying to beat the system.
3. It limits variance within large sales organizations. A good control system with a high level of visibility for management will limit variation and help sculpt positive customer experiences by holding sales representatives directly responsible for how they carry out their duties.
4. It creates more time for human-intensive work. When you automate the low-skill, low-reward tasks you cut down on errors and unnecessary labor hours spent. Sales automation is estimated to save companies five hours of labor per employee per week. By eliminating the human element where it isn’t efficient, you free up time for reps to focus on responsibilities such as sales and support calls which require the human touch.
5. It puts metrics at your fingertips. An automated system can be used to analyze account and representative success and intelligently determine the best KPIs.
6. It turns account management into a product. Automated capabilities will allow your company to differentiate itself within your industry, offering a customer experience other organizations would be hard pressed to match. Account management can be your flagship product.
7. It gives you visibility into the entire customer relationship. With a clear image of the customer supplier-relationship, you can trust that your clients will notice the effort your organization puts into account management.
For more information, download our Whitepaper: Achieving Measurable Success in Account Management.
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