SAP Cloud for Sales Delivers Next Generation CRM

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SAP Cloud for Sales



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Executive Summary

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) has been around for 20 years and has been broadly adopted by selling organizations. It has put technology in the hands of sales reps, enabling them to access contact information, track activities, manage accounts and opportunities, and increase productivity to some extent.

Yet with the changes that have occurred with the Internet—the shift in the buyer-seller balance of power—many companies are finding that their CRM system is not keeping pace with today’s demands, and not fulfilling the promise of continued sales effectiveness.

Beyond traditional capabilities, next generation CRM includes these added abilities: 1) Mobile; 2) Collaboration; 3) Complete View of the Customer; 4) Analytics; 5) Guided Selling; and 6) Lead-to-Cash Orchestration.

This paper looks at how SAP Cloud for Sales delivers on these new key areas to take sales effectiveness to the next level and equip sales organizations with the tools they need to engage today’s empowered customers.


Is Your CRM System Really Helping You Sell More Effectively?

Sales Force Automation (SFA) began in the mid-80’s with basic contact management, calendar and email capabilities. First generation Customer Relationship Management (CRM) largely displaced SFA in the early 90’s and expanded to include account, contact and opportunity management, as well as pipeline management and forecasting. As a result, it comes as no surprise that our research shows 84% of firms have currently implemented a CRM solution. However, first generation CRM has not consistently delivered on its promise of improving forecasting, increasing win rates, and/or reducing sales cycle times.

Less well known is that nearly 1 in 4 (23%) of these firms are ready to or would consider changing out their CRM solution because the system they have either has not positively contributed to the business results these companies focus upon and/or does not adequately support current sales tasks.

This brief will focus on profiling six must-have capabilities sales organizations need in their CRM system to accelerate sales effectiveness today, and will analyze how SAPCloud for Sales delivers on those requirements.

User Experience

User adoption has improved with usability and capability of CRM systems—but, as seen below, there is still significant room for improvement.

Figure 1. Percentage of reps who use their CRM application as part of their daily work


SAP Cloud for Sales provides a broad set of valuable and proven capabilities to drive sales effectiveness, along with a modern, “consumerized” user experience. It is designed for the way sales professionals sell, uses state-of-the-art usability techniques, and is easy-to-adapt to user-specific needs and preferences. The application allows each sales rep to personalize what and how information is displayed and also visualizes information (e.g., customers and their locations within a certain geographic area).

For more information on User Experience click here. < 25 % 7.8% 25 - 50% 11.2% 51-75% 12.7% 76-90% 22.5% > 90% 48.9%



Mobility is the watchword for today’s sales reps. Mobile devices are being deployed at unprecedented rates, and everyone agrees “mobile” is big and going to get a whole lot bigger. Handheld devices (e.g., smartphones and tablets) are increasingly flexible, powerful, and useful to field-based reps.

But the impact of these devices on sales productivity depends on how they’re being utilized. CSO

Insights’ research found that when used for basic functions like email, calendar, and syncing, only 38% of firms reported mobile apps had a measurable or significant impact on sales, but even more concerning is that 26% said they had no impact on sales performance. However, when used for mobile enabled sales calls (e.g., needs analysis, solution configuration, capturing voice of the customer), 71% reported mobile had measurable or significant impact on sales, while only 9% said they had no impact.

SAP Cloud for Sales’ mobile capability is as robust as working on your desktop and has the same modern, intuitive user interface. There’s no additional software to develop or deploy, no additional charge for support—the mobile capability is “just there” the same way it is on your desktop. The difference is that you’re able to leverage the mobile platform during the sales call to provide enhanced productivity and a differentiated customer experience.

Figure 2: SAP Cloud for Sales Mobile: allows reps to be prepared for every call – anytime, anywhere.



True collaboration means leveraging all the knowledge and assets within your company and co-creating a positive buying experience with your customers. For every question or challenge your company faces,

someone has the answer; SAP Cloud for Sales provides a sales knowledge management system that helps reps easily identify the right individuals, and recommends relevant answers and content so that subject matter experts (SMEs) can scale their knowledge to the entire sales organization and aren’t repeatedly answering the same questions.

Although the days of lone wolf selling are dwindling, much of CRM remains single-user based. That is, reps can see into their own accounts/contacts/opportunities but have limited, or no, visibility into best practices, collaboration, SMEs, and/or other information derived beyond their own experience. Equally important for global companies is the ability to conduct group meetings and time-shift the captured content. EMEA and North America may be jointly creating a game plan while APAC sleeps. APAC can review the recorded conversation, see the changes and have their own contributions waiting for EMEA when the next day begins.

With SAP Cloud for Sales’ social capability (SAP Jam) and pre-built connectivity to SAP ERP, all the functionality needed to communicate throughout your entire organization—reviewing purchase history, tapping into SMEs, sharing documents, etc.—is readily available and can be viewed in the SAP Jam social conversation thread. All members of the sales team and invited guests (inside and outside your firm) can co-create a solution leveraging the expertise throughout the enterprise in a client-specific workspace. Further, news feeds automatically search for, gather and share insights on how to most effectively meet the customer's need while differentiating from the competition.

SAP Jam brings together the right people, conversations, content, and applications directly in the context of your sales process, to more effectively engage with customers throughout their buying journey. Whether collaborating on a sales strategy, staying apprised of progress on a top deal, working on a proposal with a partner, or engaging your customer in a kickoff meeting, SAP Jam is purpose-built for collaboration.For more information on Collaboration click here.

Complete View of the Customer

Before they agree to say “yes” customers expect the 4R’s from sellers:

1) Recognize me; keeping track of multi-divisional corporations and their various subsidiaries is just one example of recognizing customers and the challenges associated with doing so. Another is being able to easily identify, say, your 20 largest or most profitable customers. Neither of these is readily available in first gen CRM systems.

2) Remember me; purchase and service histories are part of remembering customers. The ability to look at current orders, back orders, and communications—not just emails from the rep—including all

communications from your company with a customer mean not having to begin from Square 1 each time they speak with you.

3) Respect me; reps that are armed with industry-specific insights, who can speak to challenges your company has addressed in similar companies or situations mean you care enough to have done your homework. And that your systems support and deliver the right information at the right time to have the right (i.e., relevant, intelligent) conversation.


4) Respond to me; communicating with prospects and customers the way they want to be communicated with is part of today’s reality.

SAP Cloud for Sales is able to address all 4R’s with its pre-built integration into SAP’s back office systems providing a complete view of your customer relationships, and not just their contact and opportunity information. SAP Cloud for Sales allows users to access all account information without getting stuck in email/vmail hell; instead, all team members have access to the same (and most current) version of the truth with the ability to see recent orders, service complaints and other interactions throughout your entire organization. Plus, in-context sales insight leverages all relevant real-time information from external sales intelligence and online sources, including Social Media.

Figure 3: SAP Cloud for Sales’ complete customer view.


Too often sales management is playing catch up—operating behind the power curve—because they only have historic measures. Examples of this are percentage of revenue attained or reps ahead of and behind plan. You can monitor these figures, but you can’t manage them because they’re already baked. Sales reps and their managers are drowning in data yet dying of thirst for actionable information. Analytics provide a way to navigate these deep waters and optimize selling activities signaling alerts on leading indicators and providing early warning signs. Which sales cycles have not advanced within the normal time range (i.e., stalled)? Which existing customers are at risk of defecting? What products are nearing end-of-life and require a campaign to transition smoothly?

Everyone has heard the admonishment to “Work Smarter, Not Harder”. Analytics provide the “smarts” to recognize which opportunities and accounts require attention by searching for and highlighting patterns of success (or vulnerability). The chart below shows the dramatic difference in key business development areas between sales reps who are augmented by analytics versus those who are not.

SAP Cloud for Sales incorporates robust analytics to help reps stay focused on the highest payoff activities with the highest potential customers/prospects. Manager analytics highlight exceptions and escalations that warrant immediate attention with flexible dash boards based on real-time information from internal and external sources, dialed into user-specific needs and preferences, and in context.


Comprehensive reports with input from CRM, ERP and Business Warehouses (BW) enable pipeline performance management, blending analytical and transactional pipeline information on a single screen, along with what-if analysis.

Figure 4: Firms providing analytics outdistance non-analytic firms by wide margins.


Guided Selling

Does consistency matter? Survey says “Yes!” With a formal sales process and consistent use (>90%) by reps, 96% of revenue plan was attained and 72% of reps met or exceeded quota. With a semi-formal sales process and inconsistent use (<50%) by reps, the figures reported were 86% and 55%, respectively.

SAP Cloud for Sales includes the Sales Activity Advisor. A useful comparison would be the roadmaps of twenty years ago versus the GPS in cars today. Too often in the past, you either did not have the map in the car when you needed it, or only got it out when you were lost. If you’re a planner, you could use the map to plot your route in advance and periodically refer to it to check that you were still on course. Of course, GPS is always in the car and, with a destination plugged in, tracks where you are and gives

advance direction on what to do next.

Traditional sales training is analogous to the roadmap of old; Sales Activity Advisor is the sales rep’s GPS. It is always there, it knows where you are in the sales process, and it presents next action steps to advance the sale. You don’t need to dig out a training manual, stop what you’re doing to look up a lesson, or overlook a key tactic because you forgot about it. Sales Activity Advisor does all of these things for you.

This tool helps companies incorporate their sales process into their CRM system, and sales professionals to see suggested activities at every step of the sales cycle. SAPCloud for Sales also supportsseveral commercial sales methodologies (e.g., Miller-Heiman).

Figure 6: Sales Activity Advisor and social recommendations provide reps selling best practices.


Lead-to-Cash Orchestration

One of the most surprising, and disturbing, statistics turned up in our research is that 5.4% of deals (weighted average across 800 firms) are lost after receiving a verbal approval/selection (see chart below). Clearly you want to ease the buying process, smooth the customer experience, and insure that deals won become deals booked. SAPCloud for Sales’ ERP integration means pricing, quotes, orders, and delivery are part of a seamless and streamlined lead-to-cash process.

Figure 7: % of deals which do NOT close after receiving verbal approval. Integration throughout your organization can insure that deals sold become booked revenue.

If you’ve watched an Olympic relay track team, you’ve seen one individual sprinting and then handing off the baton to the next team member and the next to complete the entire race. This analogy can also apply to an account or prospect that is first identified by one team member (e.g., marketing, inside sales, or staff at a trade show booth), then relayed to a sales rep to identify, qualify and pursue an opportunity. A technical pre-sales rep may carry the baton for some portion, then a sales rep may pull the proposal together, and so on along the process.

Now, imagine doing all that work and being told you’re the winner, only to drop the baton short of officially completing the race! You want to be sure you’re bringing all of your company’s resources to bear on each opportunity—and you want to be sure that you complete the buy/sell cycle.

SAP Cloud for Sales ties into your entire enterprise, orchestrating tasks and providing process checks to make certain you don’t come up empty handed. Spanning the entire customer buying process beyond typical CRM systems, SAP Cloud for Sales also helps to avoid error-prone orders and inconsistencies in pricing, etc.

For more information on Lead-to-Cash Orchestration

click here



Sales organizations are ready for—and today’s customer expectations demand—next generation CRM: mobile, collaborative, comprehensive, and supporting higher effectiveness. There is neither time nor patience for reps “needing to check on that and get back to you,” when a buyer is ready to act. Placing actionable information literally in the hands of sales professionals during sales calls means more productive selling time, smoother sales cycles and a differentiated customer experience.


To empower reps in this way requires complete customer information from all available sources, integration across your entire organization, best practices/guidance served up automatically, constant analysis of the information stream, and immediate access to all team members. SAPCloud for Sales

delivers in each of these areas, giving your sales organizations the next generation CRM application they need to win with today’s purchase-savvy customers.

About CSO Insights

For nearly 20 years, CSO Insights has been researching how companies employ people, process, technology and knowledge to improve sales effectiveness. Our surveys of more than 18,000 companies have set the standard for tracking and measuring progress in addressing sales challenges and growth. The data we've gathered allows us to offer our Advisory Services clients industry and peer benchmarks, unbiased fact-based recommendations, an ever growing library of best practices and peer-to-peer introductions.


Figure 1. Percentage of reps who use their CRM application as part of their daily work flow

Figure 1.

Percentage of reps who use their CRM application as part of their daily work flow p.4
Figure 2: SAP Cloud for Sales Mobile: allows reps to be prepared for every call – anytime, anywhere

Figure 2:

SAP Cloud for Sales Mobile: allows reps to be prepared for every call – anytime, anywhere p.5
Figure 3: SAP Cloud for Sales’ complete customer view.

Figure 3:

SAP Cloud for Sales’ complete customer view. p.7
Figure 5: SAP Cloud for Sales Analytics: Stay ahead of the sales curve and eliminate surprises

Figure 5:

SAP Cloud for Sales Analytics: Stay ahead of the sales curve and eliminate surprises p.8
Figure 4: Firms providing analytics outdistance non-analytic firms by wide margins.

Figure 4:

Firms providing analytics outdistance non-analytic firms by wide margins. p.8
Figure 6: Sales Activity Advisor and social recommendations provide reps selling best practices

Figure 6:

Sales Activity Advisor and social recommendations provide reps selling best practices p.9
Figure 7: % of deals which do NOT close after receiving verbal approval. Integration throughout your  organization can insure that deals sold become booked revenue

Figure 7:

% of deals which do NOT close after receiving verbal approval. Integration throughout your organization can insure that deals sold become booked revenue p.10