“But why should it take that long?”, Shivraj asked the MIS guy impatiently.
Shivraj Singh the ZSM at CoolWater, a 15-year-old soft drinks company, was sitting with his Sales managers and Nitin the MIS guy for a review. For every new data trend that he would ask, Nitin would tell him “I’ll give it to you in the evening”. And that’s when Shivraj had gotten exasperated.
“Sir, we have more than 300 items, 1350 on-ground salespeople and 40,000 outlets across the country. That’s a lot of data to dump on excel sheets and put pivots on. I’m sorry but it will take 3-4 hours to take out the trends you want.” Nitin answered apologetically.
Shivraj threw his hands in the air. “Then how will I know where my team needs course correction? What if the retailers are not even communicated the relevant schemes and we lose potential sales today because the SOs forgot to tell them? Why should I get reports so late when we already have all this data?
Does this conversation sound familiar? I’m pretty sure you are nodding your head in agreement if you have ever worked in an FMCG company. From start-ups to corporate behemoths, all CPG companies face similar struggles around Data. All of them spew out incredible amounts of raw data every day. But it is the Data Intelligence derived from this mountain of numbers that makes all the difference in how they perform in the market.
Without Real-time Sales insights, brands will continue to wrestle with challenges like delays in implementing sales strategies, no clear line of sight on Sales team performance, fuzzy visibility of market conditions, not reaching the right stores and lack of proper inventory management and forecasting etc.
Bridging the gap between data and decisions requires solutions to effectively run your sales operations. To do that, you need some smart Data Intelligence tools that can give you granular level insights. In real-time.
1. Real-Time Sales Dashboard
Imagine getting feedback at 5 pm in the evening that an entire beat remained unserviced because the SO was absent, or that certain SOs started their day after 12 pm! If the manager had a real-time dashboard, he could have quickly assigned another SO to cover the beat. He could have also gotten visibility on people frequently starting their day late and addressed the issue timely to avoid further loss in sales.
What Sales Managers need is a personalized dashboard that captures real-time, on the go daily field as well as user activities- managers get visibility of their team’s on-ground performance based on KPIs that have been defined for them e.g. team coverage, MTD sales etc. to have better control over sales effectiveness in the field.
One of the biggest players in the Indian snack foods industry was struggling to quantify mid-manager working as well as improve sales-team productivity because there was no tangible data to work with. By adopting a top-of-the-line Sales Analytics app, they achieved PJP plan visibility in both the SO’s field app as well as the manager’s Analytics app, along with:
- Automated Daily Summaries and more visibility on their field activities.
- 95% field adoption within the 1st month of execution
- A yearly 30% increase in Total Calls, 26% in Productive Calls
2. View only the Data that you want to see
We completely understand how frustrating it is to view the entire dump of reports and make sense out of it. And if you’re not responsive and quick enough, it can hamper your competitive advantage.
For a leading packaged spices company with hundreds of SKUs, +40,000 outlets, and more than 1300 field forces with a 6-level hierarchy, their data dump into excel sheets used to take more than 15 minutes just to download. And then if different managers required specific KPI trends, it would take about 3-4 hours just to get all the correct reports created!
They only wanted visibility on very specific metrics like how many outlets had no schemes running and how many outlets were using schemes, how much % of business was coming from the frontliners, and how much was contributed by SOs (since both of them had different targets assigned to them), what was the weekly trend analysis etc. And they wanted this data available at different manager levels.
Identifying the right sales analytics application allowed them to choose from hundreds of filters to personalise different report templates that captured category wise, product wise and even user wise KPIs and trends. Once these flexible report templates were saved, all the managers had to do was download these reports and retrieve real-time data instantly.
By using Flexi Reports the company logged a 2x increase in Demand Capture with effective reporting, while another FMCG player saw a whopping 55% expansion in their Retailer Universe
3. Visualized Insights On the Go
It is a global belief that people in sales are happier being in the field and meeting people than spending hours poring over complicated spreadsheets. Also, not everyone goes into the field lugging a laptop. But what if they get graphs and pie-charts and histograms, anything that visually presents the reports so they can quickly deduce the insights and make faster decisions?
Now imagine getting this functionality and that too on the mobile! A comprehensive solution like FieldAssist’s Quick Viz offers managers a crisp, collated, graphical view of only those parameters that they wish to see. With easy-to-read charts available on the mobile anytime, anywhere, they can make real-time decisions in the field itself.
One of the best examples of visual charts is Covid Cast, a special chart we created during the pandemic that showed our customers how many salespeople were taking orders telephonically while working from home and how many were punching sales by physically visiting the market. It helped them get clarity on how each member of their team was performing with a drill-down view of individual productivity.
Data Intelligence has been fuelling insane growth journeys for FMCG companies who have harnessed the power of technology. With deep-dive capabilities, brands can improve their targeting strategies, identify the low hanging fruits to increase revenue, streamline their sales forecasting and even discover exceptions in data patterns so that sales teams can achieve the depth of data to find the root cause of those anomalies.
Wouldn’t you like this kind of deep granular visibility into your sales operations to drive stronger business decisions? Reach our CSM at firstname.lastname@example.org or book a demo.