Industry Case Study

Unocking Customer Value through Sales Team Transformation

OPPORTUNITY

 

A large, subscription-based data provider with revenues over $300M (now over $600M) and a 150 person sales team with thousands of customers needed to validate and then improve slowing rep productivity and rising sales costs.  The business was growing quite well, but the company felt that it might be growing at the expense of customer satisfaction.  The company felt the sales team was not fully engaged with the customers and this could contribute to the slowing productivity.  This sales behavior was already jeopardizing relationships in key accounts and could be a major inhibitor to long-term value extraction.

 

There was a concern that the sales team was not living up to its full productivity potential and was selling to the customer in a way that was not in the best interest of the business and not sustainable long-term.  But, without adequate data and analysis, they could not make the right decisions to improve the health of  the business for the long-term.

 

DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS

 

After an extensive time-in-motion study and analysis of additional data, it was evident that sales reps were not spending enough time in front of customers. In fact, many of them were quite comfortable doing all of their business on the phone and not traveling to see their key clients to build stronger relationships.

Weekly Breakdown of Sales Hours
Copyright 2016 - Channel Ramp, Inc. All Rights Reserved

SOLUTION

 

After extensive analysis of data and discussions with the senior sales leadership, HR and the executive team, it was decided that in order to improve customer satisfaction, increase sales performance and reduce sales expense, a transformational event for the sales organization needed to occur.  Changes to the sales organization would be made in an effort to more closely align the sales reps with the various types of buyers and buying profiles.  In addition, the company wanted to accomplish the following:

 

  • Align sales teams more closely to the customer buying profiles

  • Redesign the compensation to shift the distribution of comp toward high performing reps

  • Reduce customer tension in top, key accounts through relationship-based roles

  • Unlock sales value in under-penetrated mid-sized accounts through identification and segmentation

  • Create a high-volume, transactional, inside sales team

  • Design a scalable architecture for long-term growth

 

To start, three distinct "master" sales channels were created, some having further sub sales channels.  From this starting point, the other changes were made concurrently.

Copyright 2016 - Channel Ramp, Inc. All Rights Reserved

OUTCOME

 

These changes resulted in the following:

 

  • Significantly and measurably improved customer satisfaction with the addition of "relationship managers" for key accounts

  • Created numerous opportunities at key accounts from a greater level of partnering with the customer on their growth strategy

  • Increased line-of-site for management with all reps now having individual quota responsibility (it was "team" oriented prior)

  • Captured millions in untapped customer sales value through close alignment of the mid-market sales team to a discreet set of identified and under-penetrated accounts

  • Increased transactional volume and unlocked untapped low-spend customers, resulting in millions in new business from a newly created inside sales organization

  • Increased rep productivity levels across all sales channels (some by as much as 200%), resulting in greater Return on Sales

  • Dramatically reduced attrition in low-spend accounts with the creation of an inside sales team and a renewals team within that

  • Architected a sales organization with long-term growth in mind

 

This transformation took roughly 8 months to complete.  Over the next three years, the company doubled its revenues and maintained a high customer satisfaction level.

 

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