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Sales Performance Management Predictions for 2019

Learn predictions and trends for sales performance management (SPM) in 2019 from Forrester Principal Analyst, Mary Shea, PhD.

4 min read

To effectively manage sales team performance, you need data from multiple sources. Often, this means gathering data from five to six resources, which is a time-consuming process. Over the past decade, sales performance management (SPM) solutions have grown in popularity as the most effective way to manage successful sales organizations.

In a recent webinar, Xactly VP of Strategic Marketing, Erik Charles, sat down with Forrester Principal Analyst, Mary Shea, PhD, to discuss the importance of SPM for companies of all sizes and the benefits of implementing sooner rather than later.

Here are 5 key takeaways from their discussion.

1. Today’s average sales performance is mediocre

For the average company, both quota and corporate revenue goal attainment are not at peak levels. In today’s sales environment, 69% of companies aren’t hitting revenue targets, and in 2017, the average quota attainment was only 57%.

2. Traditional sales performance management is transforming

Traditionally, sales performance management solutions have been considered a “want” rather than a “need.” At its core, SPM aids in risk mitigation and ensuring timely, accurate commission payouts.

Today, SPM is transforming to also help sales organizations:

  • Drive top- and bottom-line growth
  • Enable, motivate, and engage sales teams
  • Increase stakeholder collaboration
  • Drive better experiences for everyone

3. Demand for SPM is increasing

Nearly 65% of companies still use home-grown SPM solutions. However, as executive leaders have become more aware of the benefits and need for SPM, demand is growing. In fact, 6% of B2B sales leaders implemented an SPM solution in the past 12 months, and 29% are currently implementing or plan to implement one in the next 12-18 months.

4. B2B organizations are undergoing digital transformation

Fifty-five percent of B2B firms are in the middle of a sales digital transformation (and 23% have already completed it). Following their marketing teams, sales organizations are quickly learning that digitalization is key for modern businesses.

With increased pressure on sales leaders and higher performance expectations, sales organizations are discovering the only true way to meet and exceed their goals is with digital SPM.

5. AI/ML capabilities are expanding for sales teams

Artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) technology is becoming more capable, which is opening up doors for sales organizations. AI helps sales leaders identify the ideal time to implement SPIFs. ML also aids reps in identifying where they should spend more time (product, region, etc.) to stay on track to meet quota.

Another way AI/ML is transforming sales teams is through turnover prediction. Xactly Insights helps sales leaders flag reps who are at risk for turnover. That way, managers can intervene sooner to prevent losing top talent (Read how Xactly sales leaders used Insights to improve our own sales management).

Want to learn more about the importance of SPM for sales organizations of all shapes and sizes? Download our white paper “Driving ROI: The Business Case for a Comprehensive Sales Performance Management (SPM) Solution.”