They say automation drives performance and thereby productivity and consequently revenue. And sure enough, you have most of the industry deploying automation at all possible levels. Yet according to research done by the Aberdeen Group, a staggering 91% of businesses choose to run their sales compensation-related calculations off a spreadsheet. That’s an outrageous figure, to say the least. Whatsmore, you have sales executives having to spend close to 15 hours a month on spreadsheets, working out their sales compensations. Not to mention the hours spent going back and forth, communicating with the payroll on matters of sales commission. And what do they get in the end:?
Errors! Research suggests a staggering 90% of spreadsheets contain errors. In the sections that follow we shall take a look at why we make a case of automating sales commission.
What exactly is Sales Commission Automation?
Here is a primer for the uninitiated. So what exactly is sales commission automation? Everything is running fine with sales data and related commissions on my spreadsheets! That will be the usual response to any kind of nudge to automating a sales commissions legacy system. The naysayers assume that they have better control of the sales commissions when they work it out of spreadsheets. Here’s an eye-opener for them.
Sales compensation automation is a software solution that seamlessly integrates with your CRM solution and your sales performance management solution to automatically tag sales executives involved in any sale, keep a track of the commission earnings, provide transparent reporting to sales reps and let them forecast their earnings for the future. You no longer have to track each and every sale and the sales reps involved on spreadsheets that tend to duplicate data over time and cause confusion. Sales commission automation is the clean lean way to align your sales reps with your sales and revenue strategy in the quickest and easiest way possible.
Why do I need it?
You most definitely want your sales reps to do work more efficiently, increasing productivity and improving sales. Why then would you want to burden them with the task of tracking their commissions on spreadsheets? It takes off valuable hours of sales from their productive time. Without automation, sales reps not only spend time on commissions calculations but are also left fighting for their sales commissions payouts when the data does not match with payroll. Spreadsheets are famously notorious for duplications in the system causing confusion in the system.
With spreadsheets, your system is not nimble enough in response to any changes. When there are changes in the sales compensation structure, you have a big task on hand when dealing with spreadsheets. An automation solution is well designed to carry out systemic changes in a quick and efficient manner while keeping it all transparent and accessible for your sales reps. With a spreadsheet-based system, any corrections in data need to be cascaded or propagated manually in most cases to other sheets. This leaves a lot of room for human error. An automated solution will ensure there are virtually zero human errors.
How do I go about automating the Sales Commission?
While automating your sales commission system is the need of the hour, you need to ensure that the solution you pick for automation meets a few ground rules.
The automation solution you choose should be able to integrate well with your CRM solution. It should be able to provide convenient and flexible channels for data mapping. With CRM integration, all sales-related data can easily flow into your sales commission calculations.
Dashboards, Reporting and Forecasting
Simple and intuitive dashboards for both sales reps and sales managers will enable transparency in the system, causing much less confusion over sales commissions. The ability to design and generate ad hoc reports will arm sales reps with the power of data analytics. The ability to forecast sales payouts in the future lets sales reps reorganise and plan their schedule and resources well.
Integration with Sales Performance Management Solution
The sales automation tool that you choose, should be able to integrate well with your sales performance management solution. With access to quota management and sales performance data, your sales commission automation solution should be able to give your sales reps accurate sales compensation views.
Plan Design and Administration
It goes without saying that your sales commission automation solution should allow for efficient planning, designing and administration of sales commission structures. It should allow you to create multiple sales commission plans. Moreover, it should be able to communicate the same plans clearly to sales reps, keeping the system transparent and reliable.
To stay flexible and nimble in the marketplace requires a flexible and agile sales commission solution. We at Kennect offer you exactly that. We provide you with two independent software solutions that integrate seamlessly with each other, freeing you of all the sales commission related shackles. We invite you to explore our sales commission solution at Incentive Commission Plan by Kennect. Power your sales performance with Sales Performance Management by Kennect.