• Flexibility and Scalability: Defining a Best-in-Class Outsourced Sales Organization

    In today’s business environment, conditions can change in a moment’s notice, whether from a shift in the overall economic climate or a natural disaster. Businesses unable to adapt to these changes are often left behind those taking a flexible and scalable approach to their sales efforts. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that your outsourced sales provider is able to change their approach at breakneck speed.

    There are several qualities you should look for in an outsourced sales provider to ensure they are able to drive successful engagements for your company, even in the face of the inevitable changes that occur in the fast-paced business world. Here are a few:

    1.   Customizes Sales Methods Based on Your Business’s Unique Needs

    Top tier sales providers are able to adapt to the distinctive characteristics of your business while utilizing best practices built from years of experience to drive exceptional results. The most effective sales providers function as an extension of your internal team and will be willing to operate in the way that is most beneficial to your organization. To identify the methods that will work best for your campaigns, it is important that the outsourced sales provider your partner with ditches the “one size meets all” mentality and starts with an in-depth analysis of your business.

    Every product or service has unique characteristics and qualities, which can influence the sales methods that are utilized. For example, the frequency of calls or contact with prospects can vary in timing from once or twice a week to every other week or longer, depending on the nature of the offering and the target audience. Another factor dependent on the offering is the typical time to complete a sale, as some sales may be completed during the initial call while others may require a relationship-focused approach that can take several contacts before the sales negotiations even begin.

    Other examples could include customizing internal methods, creating regional portfolio management teams which include members from your company, as well as your partner’s, or developing processes to simplify appointment setting. In each case, the methods used will need to be customized to your business to achieve measurable results. Ultimately, your sales provider should be able to determine the best methods to get the greatest results out of your engagement.

    2.   Adapts Easily to Internal Processes and Preferences

    Most likely, you have already established internal processes and determined what works and what does not work for your company. Successful sales providers are able to understand how these processes work and adapt their methods to integrate with your preferences, such as communication methods or reporting procedures.

    Another way successful sales providers are able to adapt to your processes is utilizing the existing technical solutions already in use by your company. Finding a sales provider with extensive experience working with various CRM systems means they will most likely be able to work with your systems and integrate effortlessly with your internal team’s already established processes. This ensures the business practices in use by your company remain intact and the results of your sales programs can be easily tracked by your internal team. Adapting to your preferred processes and systems also enables a smooth transition for the handoff of leads from your outsourced provider to your internal sales team when necessary.

    While it is important for the sales provider you work with to be flexible in their approach, it is also important for your company to be flexible and open to hear their suggestions. A true sales partner will be able to educate your company on ways that your internal teams could help to further improve the results of your sales efforts. By leveraging your sales partner’s years of in-depth sales experience, pulling from their already-established best practices and opening yourself up to hearing proactive suggestions on ways to continuously improve your sales process, you will truly be maximizing the value of partnering with an outsourced provider. By working together in a true partnership approach, one with open communication and collaboration, your sales campaigns can achieve the maximum results possible.

    3.   Ramps Up Quickly on Projects

    Finding a sales provider that ramps up on your company’s processes, products or services quickly will ensure a timely launch and faster time-to-results. The sooner you are able to get sales programs going after the initial engagement, the sooner you can start seeing revenue. With a flexible sales provider backed by pre-established best practices, extensive training programs and onboarding approaches, the ramp-up time is considerably reduced compared to companies forced to build a sales team from scratch.

    To ensure your campaign launches quickly, when reviewing potential partners, take a deep look at their talent pool and how (or if) data is used to pinpoint the best candidates for your campaign needs. Many sales providers leverage testing to help ensure the right hires are made on the program, yet these tests often fall short. While testing candidates during the hiring process can help place the right people on your engagement, it’s not the test that matters most, but the data gathered from these tests. By analyzing the underlying data, outsourced sales providers can further refine the hiring process to make the right hires to get your program off to the right start, quickly. Also, when evaluating a sales provider, ask many questions about their training programs to uncover the length of time it will take to get your program up and running. Longer training programs do not necessarily mean better trained reps. Overall, it is important that you partner with a company that understands time is money and will do what it takes to get your program up and running efficiently with a focus on delivering quality sales results.

    4.   Switches Focus Quickly and Proactively Makes Adjustments and Recommendations

    The goals of a company can sometimes shift. Flexible sales providers adapt to these changes and switch the focus of a sales program quickly and smoothly. These companies train their workforce to be flexible and to make the necessary adjustments with ease in order to remain successful.

    In addition, best-in-class sales providers will always take a proactive approach to ensure continuous program success and will refine program activities to maximize revenue. By combining sales expertise and experience with continual campaign data analysis, they are able to make informed suggestions in order to adapt to market changes and improve your results. Whether these changes involve making adjustments to their own teams or recommendations for shifting the campaign strategy based on learned information relevant to your end customer, your outsourced provider needs to take a proactive approach to ensure continuous improvements are made to boost results.

    5.   Scales Team Quickly to Meet Shifting Needs

    An essential component of a sales provider is a scalable workforce with enough sales and industry experience to quickly gain a deep understanding of your products and services with minimal training. Finding a sales provider with a scalable structure allows access to a pool of experienced professionals that can be added to an engagement as needed, reducing downtime and allowing for continuous growth. Partnering with a sales provider with a solid hiring approach, as mentioned earlier, ensures qualified candidates can be added quickly with confidence behind their likelihood of sales success. The process of building a sales team can take valuable time out of an engagement, but if the company utilizes a scalable structure beyond just the ramp, they are able to expand the team quickly and efficiently to meet the needs of growing projects.

    Flexibility and Scalability Drive Sales Results

    Outsourcing your sales efforts can be a significant investment of both time and money. Additionally, sales departments are under ever-increasing pressure to deliver exceptional results. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that the company you select is able to deliver the greatest return on your investment.

    While it can be challenging to reach your sales goals in today’s business environment, partnering with an outsourced sales provider committed to a flexible and scalable approach can help your company realize the true potential of your sales efforts. Use the above points to evaluate your current sales provider or your own internal processes/success. How flexible and scalable are they?