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Using Dashboards To Drive BI Adoption


A key challenge for most CRM, Salesforce Automation and Sales Analytics tool implementations is driving adoption by sales representatives. In most instances, the best way to get them on board in the least amount of time is to provide them with Sales Performance Dashboards. Dashboards that provide usable insight reduce countless hours preparing reports or calculating how well they are performing to quota. The latter is the most wanted piece of information most Sales Reps seek - as it is the core driver to their remmuneration and standing within the sales organization. Its their sales hot button.

When we consider dashboard usage metrics, we consider both adoption and usage.

  • Adoption - relates to whether the dashboard is used at all
  • Engagement - relates to how often the dashboard is accessed and how well the information is interrogated.

The adoption rates of dashboards vary across organizations, being largely impacted by the culture of the organization, the relationship of the team with their sales manager and the incentive the dashboard usage provides. In turn, incentive is determined by the value the sales rep perceives they get from the dashboard, which can be significantly mpacted by the trust they have in the data and the ease of access from multiple devices.

The quality of the data is largely determined by the accuracy and timeliness of data entered into the CRM, in partcular::

  • New Contacts
  • New Opportunities
  • Activities - phone calls, emails, appointments, sales events
  • Deal Probability - in both closing and potential value

Once Sales reps adopt the use of dashboards, they are most likley to be engaged through the visibility of trends. To be meaningful, sales trends need to be adjusted for any changes in market conditions, foreign exchange and pricing impact. The sales reps care less about total revenue, and more about how well they are performing - are they better or worse than last quarter, last year, or the rest of the team. This can be easily achieved by ensuring that for each major sales KPI, the contributing PI are also displayed in close proximity. In this way, the Sales rep gets the full picture and understands that his/her sales manager also sees the full picture of what is inflencing sales at any given time.

Additional features that help with engagement include interactive functions - in particular drill down and drill across, filters, and ability to extract raw data for analysis in Excel.

Engaging Sales Reps with dashboards is the quickest and most effective way to engage them in more advanced sales analytics tools - once they see the value in visual information, they want to explore it further to help understand how they can improve their performance.

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