Sales Performance Management Software
Sales Performance Management Software Overview
What is Sales Performance Management (SPM) Software?
Sales performance management is the practice of applying corporate performance management tactics to sales teams, and determining how to best encourage the kinds of behavior that drive sales. SPM is concerned with sales knowledge (best practices), sales rep motivation (incentives, commissions, and gamification), and sales accountability (projected revenue, corporate goals, etc.). The goal of SPM is to educate and motivate salespeople to set goals and satisfy customers. Sales performance management software provides a mechanism for monitoring and guiding sales reps in ways that improve their ability to sell, by linking performance and revenue analytics.
Sales Performance Management (SPM) tools allow sales managers to monitor, understand, and make changes to sales processes that affect the efficiency and effectiveness of sales reps, based on sales KPIs. They also provide sales reps with insights into their own performance and the performance of others.
Measuring Sales Performance
Sales performance management tools use sales key performance indicators to track and report on (and eventually influence) how well salespeople and teams are performing. SPM platforms aim to understand sales success factors, and how these factors influence the bottom line.
The key questions asked by a sales performance manager, and addressed by SPM software, are:
1. What makes a sales rep successful? What does success look like at this organization?
2. What is the impact of sales performance on revenue?
3. How can I adjust sales performance—through coaching, opportunity and workflow management, territory and quota assignments, goal alignment, incentive plans, etc.—in order to optimize revenue?
SPM vs. Sales Enablement: Performance Management Tools & Techniques
SPM spans a major swath of the Sales Enablement umbrella category. (Sales Content is the big component that does not tend to be included in SPM platforms, but is highly relevant to Sales Enablement.) Depending on the approach a company takes to managing sales performance—namely, the relevant KPIs a sales manager is interested in tracking and optimizing—the most useful SPM software will offer a combination of features that enable a manager to view and fine-tune interrelated sales processes. We consider SPM software to be suites that include more than one of the following capabilities, many of which are alternatively available as point solutions:
- Sales training & coaching, which includes things like sales playbooks, skill development, onboarding/new hire workflows, etc. In SPM software, these capabilities are designed around best practices for optimal performance, and may be triggered by or tailored to a particular rep’s performance. Sales training point solutions are usually HR or corporate learning management products, where “Sales” is a specific use case.
- ICM (Incentive compensation management), which allows managers and reps to understand how earnings are related to performance and how changes in performance would affect earnings. It may also include functionality for commission/bonus accounting and fulfillment, and might support non-monetary incentives. Note that many ICM point solutions are branded as sales performance management, and although not every SPM tool has full ICM capabilities (for example, Dealmaker covers opportunity management, goal alignment, and best practices), it is generally considered a core component of SPM.
- Sales gamification features can contribute to ICM and/or sales coaching and goal setting. Gamification, along with compensation, plays a large role in the “motivation” aspect of SPM.
- Territory and quota management, which is often bundled with and related to ICM. From an SPM perspective, territory and quota assignments should be adjusted in order to yield the net most revenue. SPM platforms may allow managers to take into account sales cycle lengths and revenue yield by type of deal and by rep, revenue yield vs. incentive over a period of time, etc. Managers should balance territory and quota assignments to facilitate improvements in individual rep performance as well as overall sales team performance.
- Sales planning and monitoring includes goal planning and goal alignment tools, as well as tools that help managers explore what-if scenarios and plan changes to optimize sales performance. This can also include mechanisms for managers and coaches to provide informal feedback to individual reps, or conduct performance reviews and job evaluations.
- Sales pipeline management may also be called opportunity, lead or prospect management. These tools can help managers and reps visualize and plan how to approach the sales pipeline (manually or semi-automatically), or they may involve rules engines/built-in best practices that route certain opportunities to certain reps, automatically create alerts for warm opportunities, and make recommendations about how to reach out. SPM software that is not built around ICM often focuses on opportunity management. Note that while sales pipeline tools are point solutions that address this area, CRM systems with robust sales pipeline features don’t usually approach opportunity management from a performance management perspective. Predictive sales analytics software can also intelligently fuel opportunity/pipeline management.
- Sales forecasting and sales performance analytics, which tie together sales KPIs to provide a comprehensive view on the relationship between revenue and sales behavior, compensation, and pipeline management, as well as change over time. Many sales forecasting point solutions exist to help users generate expected deals and projected revenue reports; these tend to focus less on adjusting/optimizing sales behavior, and many are really BI tools with a sales use case. Predictive sales analytics is another type of advanced sales analytics tool that can generate highly specific, highly accurate sets of expectations; however, predictive analytics tools for sales and marketing tend to focus on models that use machine learning to dynamically update expectations, which is very different than the type of overview sales forecast reports that are traditionally used in quarterly planning, for example.
Sales Performance Management Products
Anaplan aims to be the leader in Connected Planning. According to the vendor, the software—powered by their patented Hyperblock engine—enables dynamic, collaborative, and intelligent planning. Large and fast-growing companies worldwide use Anaplan to connect the people and data required for trust...
Xactly Incent Pro is a cloud-based, secure sales incentive compensation solution for enterprise-class businesses. Incent Pro replaces tedious, spreadsheet-based manual processes, making any incentive compensation program easy to manage and error free.
InsideSales.com Predictive Playbooks aims to help SDRs and AEs quickly build closeable pipeline, by helping salespeople get a hold of more of the right people. InsideSales.com uses their A.I.-platform called Neuralytics to target likely buyers combined with their cadence engine to help sales reps...
InsightSquared is a sales analytics platform that provides sales leaders with the insights they need to drive performance and close deals. According to the vendor, the comprehensive set of reports provide sales leaders with ready access to all the analysis they need to assess their progress, diag...
InsideSales.com provides a sales acceleration platform that is built on Neuralytics, a predictive and prescriptive self-learning engine that drives revenue growth by delivering an optimized experience for both the salesperson and buyer.
NetSuite CRM is built on the same code base as the NetSuite ERP product and is usually used by customers who are already using NetSuite for ERP/Accounting.
Demandbase offers a comprehensive set of marketing solutions purpose-built for the account-based needs of B2B. The Demandbase B2B Marketing Cloud includes Advertising, Marketing, Sales and Analytics solutions. According to the vendor, their solution provides B2B marketers with an unprecedented ab...
Oracle Sales Cloud is a sales automation software accessible through Microsoft Outlook, iOS, and Android, along with territory and quota management and social collaboration.
Velocify is a sales performance management solution that was acquired by Ellie Mae in 2017. The product is no longer sold separately.
Gong.io is a sales enablement platform for B2B sales teams. The product records, transcribes, and analyzes every sales call in order to gauge the effectiveness of sales interactions.
According to the vendor, MoData is an AI-powered sales intelligence software that delivers: Hundreds of out-of-the-box Sales KPI charts/reports. Sales Forecasting Deal Scoring Pipeline Prediction Rep Quota TrackingTrack pipeline changes & Funnel progression. Account Based Sales & ...
Iconixx Sales is a cloud based sales compensation software application (SaaS) that enhances sales commission management with flexibility and scalability in an easy-to-use, all-in-one solution.
Aviso Insights provides predictive analytics software that is designed to help sales organizations optimize their performance and exceed their revenue goals.
SalesDirector.ai is a sales forecasting and coaching tool that uses artificial intelligence to make predictions and recommendations based on combined CRM, Email, Calendaring and call log data.
Optymyze SPM Cloud supports a wide range of incentive compensation and sales performance needs with a comprehensve suite of fully-integrated applications that feature a common, touch-oriented UI, utilize a single, configurable data repository, and enable non-technical users to implement and mana...
Synygy is a Sales Performance Management solution from the company of the same name, which advertises itself as SOaaS (Sales Operations as a Service). It includes software and best practices around sales compensation management, sales optimization, sales enablement, and sales analytics. Synygy is...
TopOpps is a sales pipeline management and sales forcecasting solution. This solution provides pipeline visibility and a unified workflow for both inside and outside sales teams. The forecast tool is designed to give users an accurate representation of the sales pipeline in real time.
Obero SPM is a sales performance management product that helps organizations streamline their sales planning, execution and optimization processes. The product supports the end-to-end sales performance life cycle, and automating processes for sales, HR and finance. Functionalities include:- Sale...
People.ai calls itself a revenue intelligence platform for go-to-market teams. The platform promises to help sales, marketing and customer success teams uncover every revenue opportunity from every customer. Customers include: Lyft, Gainsight, Tanium and Palo Alto Networks. People.ai helps them...
Masskom is a sales gamification software solution offered by Masskom, Inc.
Azurepath is designed to automate lead management and performance tracking for insightful business growth. According to the vendor, Azurepath is remarkably easy to use and suitable for any sized business selling any kind of product or service. Visual lead queues for individuals and teams eliminat...
Axtria SalesIQ is a cloud-based platform that helps sales management run an effective and efficient sales operation. The solution includes modules for planning, deployment and performance management.
IBM Cognos Sales Performance Management (SPM) is a complete solution that helps customers streamline administrative processes, drive desired behavior, and better manage sales resources. It is based on the incentive compensation management solution (formerly Varicent) from IBM.
Work.com is a sales performance management solution from Salesforce. It is part of the Sales Cloud. It includes features around sales coaching, motivation, and team alignment. Managers can coach sales reps and recognize individual achievements within the Salesforce interface, create and report on...