Summary

Building a plan that drives goals for the organization is just the first step. By integrating the AOP system with CRM and Financial systems we deliver a fully integrated KPI management solution that shows you where things are going off track in real time. Instead of depending on Quarterly reviews to find out where you stand, you can see it as part of your business dashboard and make changes before you run out of time. The NEHANET KPI management system integrates the plan with your current business situation to keep the team on track and make the plan a reality.

Real Time Key Performance Indicator sales management

Introduction

Companies today have sophisticated ERP systems and most have CRM solutions — either from the plethora of CRM suppliers that exist or a system built internally over the years. These systems work to provide a real time picture of what is going on in the business financially, operationally, or through the external sales and marketing processes. The internal support for ensuring up-to-date and accurate data varies depending on the team members’ perceived value from the time investment needed to keep it updated.

The financial system is usually pretty good at delivering a profit, cost, receivable picture but the forward-looking business forecasting and customer/market outlook system is often not very accurate or well aligned with the financial management system. As we have worked with clients over the last 17 years, we have seen just about everything from high performance, highly integrated sales and marketing teams to companies that spend all their time simply trying to figure out what is going on. Almost everyone tries to set goals and objectives for their various teams but most have a very limited way to see where groups, or better yet individuals, stand in relation to meeting their goals as the year progresses.

Does this feel familiar?

  • Companies address this disconnect by building detailed annual plans and setting Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that serve to allocate the company wide goals to individual managers and groups and on down to the individual level. These KPIs get tied to goals, performance reviews, and bonus plans to try ensure that everyone knows what must be done to secure the company’s overall objectives. Then, once the planning process is done in January, everyone starts out with good intentions that soon become disconnected from what happens in the business and with customers.
  • Quarterly reviews, and monthly business reviews all serve to keep everyone on track and working together. As time goes on, however, the KPIs and the real business results often get more and more disconnected.
  • Priorities change, customer surprises happen, competitors get in the way, and products have issues or don’t get released on time. It all makes the plan and reality move away from each other — sometimes for the better, often for the worse.
  • Keeping the organization focused on delivering the results you need gets more and more difficult as time goes on over the year.

KPIs are a big step toward managing the business and delivering results. But knowing where you are all the time and taking steps to get back on track quickly before you get too far off track is critical — and difficult to do if all you have to work with are reviews and public lashings. The trick is to figure out how to manage performance in a real-time system that identifies when results are starting to deviate from plans so you make changes or reprioritize tasks to change the direction of groups or individuals.

AOP

How can you solve this problem and build a goal-driven high performance organization?

As an executive, the key issues you need to solve to create a KPI-driven, motivated teams are:

  • Building a synchronized top-down/bottom-up plan and goals that tie sales performance to engineering program execution and operational performance metrics such as delivery performance, quality, lead times, and costs.
  • Rolling out the KPI plan as part of the annual operating plan implementation with KPIs defined across the team that all tie back to meeting the corporate objectives

    • You must have a clear picture of the business history, current situation, and business outlook across all the business units, sales teams, key customer programs, and marketing plans
  • Building an information system that not only shows the current situation with customers but also shows where each group or individual stands in relation to the KPIs. Make this part of the business information dashboards so you know what has happened and what is expected in the future. Presenting the results and showing where everyone stands in relation to the KPIs makes them a tool to drive change.
  • As things change you need to adjust support and priorities or offer assistance or motivation to change the trajectory of what is happening – that changes the process to proactive management instead of periodic business reviews and confrontations.
  • You are talking to managers and sales people every day. Imagine the power of being able to talk to them about how and where to achieve the KPIs that will make or break your year.

With NEHANET, the information about customers, business outlook, and opportunities is all linked to the financial systems data on margins and product delivery expectations on backlog, shipments, and inventory so once you set up group and individual KPIs you can compare current situation data to business plan goals to identify where everyone is today. As you visualize forecasts, opportunities, backlog
and shipments you can also see how that data compares to what you need to meet plan.

When you have a comprehensive CRM platform that allows you insight into the future – customer situations, opportunities, forecasts, issues, plans – and that is linked to current business metrics – margins, backlog, inventory – you can adjust or modify what is happening across the organization to optimize the overall results and achieve your plan objectives. You can even adjust KPIs to fit changes in the business and make priorities support achieving current realistic goals and objectives. Such a platform also allows you a chance to identify areas that are going off track early so you can make adjustments to get back on plan. If you wait for quarterly reviews, you are always behind the curve — trying to catch up instead of building momentum to achieve results.

Changing the Game

Knowing where things stand compared to business metrics like margin, cycle time, turns etc. is important but what if some of your KPIs involve changing the way the team works. For example, you could have KPIs that set goals for the time it takes to win an opportunity, % deals won, $ value of deals in the pipeline, forecast accuracy, ROI on new product introductions or trade shows.

These are all trackable KPIs in the CRM system that could have an owner and have results that are measured and tracked in real time. Can you do that in your ERP or CRM system now? The NEHANET CRM KPI module gives you the power to drive teams to change the way they play the game.

Sales teams are always under pressure from customers, management, and product managers to deliver business. They have to be good time managers to keep all the balls in the air all the time. If all you do is say we need to improve the win %, for example, but don’t have a way to show what has happened in the past and what is happening now, you can never get any traction in the sales team to change the way they do things. By building a KPI management system as part of the CRM solution, you can keep even these kinds of process change objectives front and center in the attention window of the sale team. If they think it is important, they will find a way to get it done because it gets attention from the organization and they can get other people to change the way they do things to start moving the needle toward process improvement and better results.

Build High Performance Teams

Part of building a high performance team organization is building team confidence that everyone is driving to achieve the same results. It starts with building a business plan that gets buy-in across the board – the NEHANET AOP system builds a plan that accommodates the needs of all the steak-holders and lets them approve the plan with confidence. With an automated plan system everyone’s inputs and thoughts are captured and visible. No one feels like they got forced to accept a plan that doesn’t fit reality. Everyone has goals that support executing the same plan with the same priorities and you can minimize the impact of individual priorities that solve one problem but hurt the overall objective.

Once you have a plan, the world always gets in the way — customers don’t cooperate, engineering programs have delays, marketing projects change, and organizations change over the year. As a leader, you constantly are forced to change priorities and move manpower around to meet the needs of the market. With the NEHANET KPI system, you can adjust KPIs as needed to fit the changing priorities. Set new goals for a product release, reduce or increase a region’s sales plan when programs are won or lost, or move funding in marketing to more relevant projects as demands change.

Widget Power BI Dashboard

The system lets you see what the impact of potential changes are on the rolled-up business plan as you make changes. By keeping it all tied together you can keep the team motivated to succeed by making sure organizational priorities are aligned with business goals and the KPIs people are expected to achieve. Making the KPI system dynamic instead of static will keep the focus on what you need to do to deliver the optimal business results in real time.

Visual Goals

AOP

The NEHANET Visualization capability lets you see what the goals are as you are looking at the current business results in the CRM system. The sales guy who once said “tell me how you’re are going to measure me and I will tell you what I will do” was right. Keeping the KPI goals front-and-center in all the visualizations keeps people focused on delivering the results you need. Doing it in a graphical interface makes it easy to understand and focuses the attention of both the individual and the manager. A picture that depicts the situation is the most powerful tool to get attention. The NEHANET visualization engine makes it easy to see where things stand now and where you think they will stand in the future.

Too much time is spent doing reviews and adjusting expectations. With NEHANET’s comprehensive CRM solution, managers and team members have the opportunity to see in real time where the company and their own groups and team members are delivering results. Integrating it all together with AOP plans, KPI goal, customer history and forecasts, and product line results along with margins and channel sales partners makes the NEHANET business management solution stand out from all the rest. You can stop depending on reviews to find out where things stand and turn them into planning and priority setting discussions to drive the results you need. We make it crystal clear where things stand today and where the problem areas are. All you have to do is figure out how to improve the results and make the changes needed to keep the team on target.

Call us for an overview discussion about how we can make a difference in your team.

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