New research from NewVoiceMedia, a leading global provider of cloud contact centre and inside sales technology, reveals that sales professionals who use a CRM system are losing an average of six weeks a year completing manual administrative tasks that could be automated with the right computer telephony integration (CTI) investment. When applied over an entire inside sales team, this represents a productivity loss equivalent to nearly one and a half reps per year¹.
The study, conducted by global market research firm Opinion Matters, finds that despite an increase in CRM software spending, automation remains underutilised, and 61 percent of sales reps say their business would benefit from advancing its inside sales technology. Universally, companies are making significant investments in their CRM platform. A September 2015 survey from Forbes Insights and Brainshark revealed that 55 percent of executives were investing in sales enablement technologies to improve sales productivity and more than half were making analytics and CRM software investments (54 percent and 53 percent respectively.) However, according to NewVoiceMedia’s research, 76 percent of sales reps must still manually update their CRM record after a call. On average, they spend 34 minutes a day in data entry, which, over the course of a year, amounts to 17 complete workdays. Additionally, the average sales person spends 24 minutes a day manually entering prospects’ phone numbers, amounting to 12 workdays a year – time that could be focused on closing deals.
Specifically, sales teams are neglecting elements of automation that could be modernised with CTI, and its cost vs. value perception is largely misunderstood. The majority of companies (69 percent) believe cost is the top obstacle to adopting CTI, even though solutions that integrate with CRM platforms absorb substantial costs from administrative tasks.
With NewVoiceMedia’s ContactWorld technology, Six Pack Shortcuts reported savings of 276 minutes per day thanks to its click-to-dial function, which, coupled with other features, has enabled the company to achieve a 500 percent growth in sales. BrightCurrent also increased its productivity with ContactWorld, handling a 350 percent increase in lead volume since implementation.
“Sales reps who don’t have the best, up-to-date technology often feel behind the curve”, says Dennis Fois, President and COO of NewVoiceMedia. “Our research makes it clear that companies have made definitive efforts to improve their sales processes, but we are surprised at the amount of manual effort many salespeople still have as part of their roles. Businesses should be investing in automating monotonous and time-consuming administrative functions, so that sales teams can focus more on selling”.
Other key findings
• Only 43 percent of sales professionals can identify corresponding previous interactions with their prospects and customers, and less than a quarter (23 percent) have a system in place to intelligently route callers to the most appropriate team member.
• 22 percent of reps reported that they cannot present a local number to their prospect, regardless of the region they are currently calling from.
• 46 percent of sales professionals’ lack technology that can show them the hottest leads to follow-up on first.
• After a lost deal, only 45 percent of sales people solicit feedback every time, and six percent never ask.
¹ Based on The Bridge Group’s 2009 Inside Sales Report, which states that the average inside sales team is 12 reps. 5.8 weeks a year are lost on average to administrative tasks, per rep.