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4 Thoughts About the Future of Sales Productivity

Last week our Ruum team attended the SAP Now conference in Berlin and now it's time to share learnings!

Ruum Team

Diana Roesner

March 21, 2019

3 min read

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Last week our Ruum team attended the SAP Now conference in Berlin. It was the first of its kind, attracting nearly 1,000 German speaking SAP customers and partners in the now defunct Tempelhof Airport as the event’s unique location. Over the course of two days, we were able to meet with a variety of customers, SAP teams and we even threw a day 1 After Party to celebrate.

However, in every spare minute we had between customer meetings and presentations, we found ourselves wrapped up in incredible conversations around how sales operates today and how Ruum can support the trends the teams are undergoing.

We would be remiss not to share these learnings with you, so here are some of the key takeaways from these conversations:

Customization is King

Be it in the consumer goods industry (where we can now personalize running shoes and furniture), or in the manufacturing and the chemical industry, sales is increasingly driven by tailored solutions.

SAP customers produce everything from flavors and fragrances to drilling machines and a multitude of other products on demand. This means that sales is becoming more and more of a project business and because of this, sales people are transforming into project managers. Not only expected to close deals, sales people are now coordinating between the different departments involved in creating new products. Many times, this includes working with production, contracting, quality assurance, and so on for one single customer.

Staying on top of the many stakeholders is the new art of selling.

The Growing Flexibility of Processes

The growing list of responsibilities assigned to sales people means they are increasingly managing sales projects instead of solely selling standard units of a product. To stay on top of their projects and maintain control, sales executives often rely on tools they’ve become familiar with from their private lives, like Dropbox, Google Docs, and WhatsApp.

However, IT departments need to ensure security across the company and are rarely happy about this grassroot approach in tool usage. When speaking to IT and sales teams at SAP Now, the one thing we heard repeatedly was that the processes around these projects are very unstructured.

Therefore, today’s organizations are looking for tools that allow for the implementation of structured processes, whilst also leaving certain flexibility to their teams.

What it boils down to is if you want your sales people to sell tailored solutions, you cannot expect them to follow a completely rigid process. Any process should be flexible enough to adapt to a customer’s need.

Always On-The-Go and Faster Than Ever

While we all know that quality takes time, buyers are also used to speed. This mentality may come from the consumer business, but it’s now spilling over to the B2B space.

What this means for sales teams is that they want to be able to react fast and be mobile.

The days where a sales person would visit a customer and get to the office the next day to act on what was discussed are now over. Today’s employees servicing customers want to start distributing tasks the minute they leave the customer meeting.

Integrated, Yet Lightweight

“There are so many tools out there and my people are confused when to use what.”

This was something we heard in almost every conversation we had at SAP Now. Today’s corporations are looking for one solution that will allow their sales teams to do everything:

  • Have the 360-degree view of their customer
  • Create a quote
  • Manage a sales project
  • Communicate with the customer and document all of it in one place

At the same time, this sought-after solution can’t be heavy, where it needs VPN and takes minutes to spin up. It should be the all-in-one integrated yet lightweight sales productivity tool that lets sales (people) take off easily.

As a sales person myself, it’s easy for me to relate to these challenges.

And I’m grateful that I have not only found a solution for myself, but that I sell it to customers. Ruum by SAP is a gamechanger for productivity and when paired with SAP Sales Cloud, it’s unbeatable.

If you want to learn more about how you can also boost your sales teams’ productivity, please reach out. Our team is happy to walk you through Ruum for sales teams. You can also start using Ruum freemium immediately at www.ruumapp.com.

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