Advantages and Disadvantages of Sales Force Automation

Topics: Customer relationship management, Sales, Marketing Pages: 4 (1037 words) Published: October 29, 2008
1.0 Introduction

Managing sales is not difficult while a company is small. However, when sales start to grow, it is very hard to manage enlarged sales workflow as effectively as before. It is because the increasing number of sales tasks, the number of regions, customers and products. It is taxing for salespersons to handle sales grows without a special system for planning, tracking, analysing, reporting, and controlling all aspects of sales activity, projects and tasks. Therefore, various sales management systems are developed in order to order to assist sales force operation.

Sales Force Automation systems (SFA) are sales management systems that record all the stages in a sales process. SFA tracks all contact that has been made with customers, the purpose of the contact, and any information that might be needed. This ensures that sales efforts would not be duplicated. This eliminates unnecessary procedures and the risk of irritating customers. SFA also includes a sales lead tracking system, sales forecasting, order management and product knowledge.

2.0 Advantages of Sales Force Automation System (SFA)

Technology is critical for success in selling and marketing today. When implemented strategically and effectively, it can provide a lot of benefits. The Internet is one of the ideal platforms for SFA. SFA systems have features where customers can customise the product to meet their required needs through online product building systems. This is becoming more and more popular in the IT industry, where consumers can customise various features. For instance: Dell computer offers optional product features and accessories for consumers. By adopting SFA, Dell’s sales operation becomes more efficient and thus operating cost can be minimised.

Businesses which use the Customer relationship management (CRM) as a form of SFA strategy will benefit from it. CRM is a strategy where companies choose and manage the most valuable customer relationship (Ingram et al....

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Ingram, TN, LaForge, RW, Avila, RA, Schwepker, CH & Williams, MR 2006, Sales ………..Management: Analysis and Decision Making, Thomson South-Western,
James, G 2003, ‘CRM rises to the top’ Electronic Business, Vol. 29, Iss. 9; pg. 13. ……..Retrieved August 28, 2008, from ProQuest database.
Overby, S 2005, ‘The Price Is Always Right; Marriott applied its business wisdom to ……..building an IT system that has successfully tackled its greatest challenge-……..maximizing revenue’, CIO, Vol. 18, Iss. 9; pg. 1. Retrieved August
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