5 Ways You Can Use Data Driven Business Intelligence to Increase Sales Performance

data driven business intelligence best ways

I hate to say it, but data is cool again. Stat nerds are running baseball. Pollsters can predict how a single policy decision can swing the electorate block by block. And marketers can push ads to customers for a product before they even realize they need it. Now, more than ever before, data is informing the decision-making process in ways we couldn’t have ever dreamt.

However, just because data is interesting and integration of data is gaining popularity, doesn’t necessarily mean that businesses are using it correctly. According to a Forbes report, less than half of the businesses are optimizing the data correctly to gain data-driven business intelligence. 

Contrarily, organizations that have used data-driven business intelligence have shown a remarkable increase in sales performance. The insights they derived helped them tweak compensation plans, motivate sales reps, monitor goals, and forecast how changes will impact sales behavior in the future.

Here are five ways you can use data to optimize your sales organization:

EDUCATION

Knowledge is power. Real-time insights into progress on sales goals, expectations, and compensation package structure make it more likely for reps to be successful. Managers can distribute compensation plan documents and provide reps with access to a sales dashboard that updates in real-time. Visibility into how they stand can be a real motivation for pushing that last sale across the finish line.

MENTORSHIP

Managers can also use data to identify the strengths and weaknesses of each rep, allowing them to tailor their coaching strategy accordingly. Instantly, managers can see where the rep stands with meeting goals, where they need help, and whether they are focusing on the appropriate priorities.

MONITORING

Knowing when someone on the team is trending in the wrong direction allows managers to be more proactive when taking corrective action before it is too late. Reps should also be able to monitor their own performance and see how they are tracking toward their goals.

ENGAGEMENT

Data-driven gamification is a great way to create some healthy competition and motivate sales reps, and analytics provides much-needed transparency and visibility into how the competition is shaping up in real-time. Not all compensation has to be monetary, either. Prizes, extra vacation days, and entries for bigger drawings are good options. Not to mention good old bragging rights.

ASSESSMENT

Compensation plans should be constantly updated to reflect changing market conditions and dynamic business goals—albeit in a transparent way. Business intelligence can help monitor plan effectiveness, ensuring that the right behavior is being incentivized. Data can also be fed into forecasting tools to see how changes to plans will impact future sales—and increase in commission on last year’s inventory to clear the backlog, for example.

Data-driven business intelligence can be a powerful tool you can use to optimize sales performance. Data enables better, more informed decision-making about compensation, motivation, and forecasting.

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Charles Scripps, Board Member

Chad has over ten years of experience investing in dynamic, growing businesses in diverse industries and geographies. His private equity experience includes HIG Capital, which has over $12B in capital under management, and AEA Investors, which manages over $3B of invested and committed capital. While at HIG and AEA, Chad led diligence, structuring, and financial analysis of potential and existing investments, and completed transactions in the industrial products and consumer services industries. Chad also has experience investing in the public equity markets, most notably as a Managing Director at Fox Point Capital, a $1B fund seeded by Julian Robertson of Tiger Management. He invested across a number of industries, including industrials, financials, technology, and consumer products, and led Fox Point’s international research. Prior to focusing his career on investing, Chad was a management consultant at McKinsey and Company, solving strategic problems for the world’s leading companies. Chad earned an MBA with Honors in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a BS with Distinction in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Lester F. Alexander II, Board Member

Les Alexander is a partner with Jefferson Capital Partners where he provides mezzanine and equity capital for growth and buyout transactions. Mr. Alexander is a member of the firm’s investment committee and serves on the board of directors of several portfolio companies where he is actively involved in strategic planning and corporate governance. Prior to joining Jefferson Capital, he worked at Advantage Capital Partners where he completed several portfolio company investments and served on the investment committee. Before becoming a private equity investor, Mr. Alexander served as president of Ferrara Fire Apparatus, Inc., a leading fire truck and emergency vehicle manufacturer. At Ferrara, he was responsible for managing a workforce of 450 employees producing over 300 vehicles annually for its domestic and international customers. As an investment banker for 15 years with such firms as Howard Weil, Southcoast Capital, and J.C. Bradford & Co., Mr. Alexander completed over 50 public offerings of debt and equity securities, private placements, and merger and acquisition transactions totaling more than $7 billion for public and private companies in a variety of industries. Mr. Alexander is an adjunct professor at Tulane University and Loyola University where he teaches graduate and undergraduate classes in investment banking, private equity & venture capital, advanced financial management, investments, and entrepreneurship. He is also the board president for Benjamin Franklin High School, a public charter school in New Orleans. Mr. Alexander is the former Chairman Finance of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) and served on the global Board of Directors. He is a founder of the Louisiana chapter of ACG and was a recipient of the ACG global Meritorious Service Award and the Louisiana chapter’s Outstanding Service Award. Mr. Alexander received his bachelor of science in Commerce from the University of Virginia in 1989 and his MBA from the University of North Carolina in 1993.

Patrick F. Healy, Board Member

Based in Kansas City, Mr. Healy is a co-founder of C3 Capital. He has been an active private equity investor since 1985 and was a co-founder of C3 Holdings in 1994. Prior to this time, he sponsored and structured equity investments in real estate. He gained extensive workout and restructuring experience as chair of the creditor’s committee of a $1 billion bankruptcy and from being called upon to rescue a publicly-traded company from a major fraud. Mr. Healy was a senior tax partner at Mayer Hoffman McCann, a regional CPA firm, for eleven years. He received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Kansas.

Chris Waters, VP of Strategic Sales

As Vice President of Strategic Sales, Chris guides and influences all strategic sales activities at A5 , starting in presales activities, successful sales methodology, sales process, and continued revenue generation and expansion opportunities. Furthermore, he will provide oversight in strategic sales function for the company and develop strategic sales plans that will promote growth in sales and customer satisfaction. Chris has proven his commitment to sales leadership and organizational success through field leadership as National Sales Manager at Deluxe Corporation, Field Sales Manager within the Social / Analytics Cloud at Oracle, US Regional Manager for CPQ Major Accounts at Oracle and now as Vice President on Sr. Leadership Team at A5.

Keith Fox, GM Salesforce Canada

Keith Fox is a software and consulting veteran for the past 34 years. Keith started his career at EDS which was followed by 4-year stint offshore in Bermuda. Keith then returned to Canada where he held a number of progressive sales and technical positions with software companies such as Sybase, BEA, and Oracle. After his stint with Oracle, Keith founded Cloudware Connections, a premier Salesforce consulting partner. 11 years down the line, Cloudware was acquired by A5, and Keith joined as GM for Canada.

Tarun Sharma, Practice Director and Senior Solution Architect

Tarun Sharma is Vice President Customer Success at A5 and is responsible for customer success, project operations, recruitment, resource utilization and sales operations functions for Oracle practice. As a business and technology leader Tarun helps businesses develop solution strategies to streamline the sales process and improve customer relations to drive revenues, profits and build brand loyalty. Tarun has led customers through digital transformation journeys. He has commanded strategic and tactical initiatives to shorten sales cycles, increase deal values and productivity, improve brand awareness and help organizations become easier to do business with. He has helped customers modernize their sales enablement tools and present a single source of information to support an omni-channel sales approach. This includes global roll-out for multiple business units included multi-currency and multi-language. Tarun graduated from Texas A&M University with a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering.

Adam Rosenfield, VP of Salesforce Practice

As Vice President of A5’s consulting practice – Adam is responsible for both strategic alliances with partners and expanded sales growth through the entire portfolio of A5 services. With over 20 years of Sr. level management consulting expertise – Adam has worn multiple hats in his career including practice development, sales, and client advisory. He has sold & delivered countless enterprise transformational initiatives creating a measurable competitive advantage for his customers. In addition to various technical software certifications, Adam holds an undergraduate and master’s degree in Accounting & Information Technology from the University of Texas at Austin and resides in El Paso Texas with his wife and 3 children.

PJ Alfrejd, CFO

As the CFO, PJ is responsible for all things financial at A5. With over 20 years of experience in financial leadership positions, PJ has worn all the hats required of a growing tech business. His extensive knowledge of the consulting industry, experience with M&A, and strength in operational finance is another catalyst to take A5 to the next level in its growth trajectory. PJ is a CPA with a BS in Accounting from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and has held various finance leadership positions at Exodus/Savvis (acquired by Centurylink), Neohapsis (acquired by Cisco), and mFoundry (acquired by FIS).

Vinay Kruttiventi, President & CEO / Chairman of the Board

As the CEO of A5, Vinay plays an active role in all aspects of the day-to-day business operations. He is also actively involved in establishing strategy and vision for the company, is a customer advocate with Salesforce and Oracle product development, and is also actively involved in various and industry user / special Interest groups. Since founding the company in 2004, Vinay has successfully grown the business into a leading Salesforce and Oracle partner focused on CPQ and ERP. Vinay was a very hands-on implementing and architecting CPQ solutions to over 50 complex transformation projects for various Fortune 500 companies since 1996. Vinay is a leading authority on industry/process/ technology in Configure-Price-Quote and ERP applications. Vinay graduated from Osmania University with a Bachelor of Engineering degree and from JNTU with a Master in Technology degree.