The role of sales operations is rapidly changing. The main function is, of course, to centralize and coordinate all the sales support functions previously performed by managers in the field. The mechanics of managing territories, account assignments and quotas along with commission planning and payouts—are now handled with more efficiency and, perhaps more importantly, with greater strategic purpose with sales ops administering the process.
But for companies that also use non-cash sales contests to motivate teams, sales ops can be particularly useful in helping the firm stay on message.
It is only natural for different brand managers to want to push their products. In their world, forecast and pipeline ambitions are less enterprise-centric. They are more connected to how their products or offerings are doing. But what’s good for some product lines isn’t always the ideal scenario for the Chief Sales Officer and their corporate forecast, especially if an unapproved contest causes confusion and deflects attention from other products.
Sales executives are anxious to get their arms around any rogue sales incentive activity that may run counter to the bigger goals and objectives they have set forth because when it comes to making numbers at a corporate level, the reality is that some product lines are just more critical than others. It’s easy to see why the CSO wants sales operations to oversee who is motivating reps to sell what.
That’s why sales ops leaders who have built incentive platforms are in the best position to approve and then manage the presentation of sales contests before they hit the field. With these platforms, sales ops are also better prepared to make sure the messages, goals and offerings they use to motivate reps are in sync with the company’s bigger business mission.