Sales Operations: The CEO's Perspective

Sales Operations: The CEO's Perspective

Sales Operations: The CEO's Perspective

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Why do company leaders hire sales operations professionals and what makes this position such a valuable piece of the revenue-generating puzzle?

September’s Sales Ops Meetup: The CEO's Perspective, featured a panel of CEOs from B2B SaaS companies ranging in size from 40 to 200, to answer these questions, and more.

The panelists included: Mikita Mikado of PandaDoc, Bastiaan Janmaat of DataFox, and Evan Liang of LeanData.

Here is the Q&A from the discussion:

How do you receive sales data and who gives it to you?

Every CEO agreed: the best way to receive the data is through reporting and dashboards using BI tools and Salesforce.

In terms of who presents the data, Liang advocated for marketing operations to present the demo numbers and sales ops for raw bookings and pipeline. While Mikado described getting sales data from the VP of Sales or Director of Finance.

Janmaat described the importance of not just the weekly updates on metrics, but case by case analysis to dig into particular challenges or opportunities as well.

“You improve on what you measure," Janmaat said. "When you focus on something specific and measure it, it improves because that’s where your focus is."

Once you get the data, what do you do with it?

One of the biggest advantages of regular reporting is that it functions as the canary in a coal mine.

“We do analysis to know how we are doing against our goals and for an early warning system to know if things are going off,” said Liang.

For reporting to be effective though, the data informing it must be accurate. PandaDoc’s year kicked off with a big push to clean their data, to enable better understanding of their data in reporting going forward.

How well do you know Salesforce on a scale of 1-10?

The answers ranged, with none of the panelists claiming an expert level of expertise. One answer in particular generated plenty of laughter from the audience though.

“Better than my mom,” Mikado, in his assessment of his Salesforce capabilities.

How often do you consult sales ops for sales data?

“We want every member of our team to be able to access the data that impacts their line of business,” said Mikado. “That is what is one thing that is going to make everyone in the company more productive.”

Besides reporting, where else is ops helpful?

  • Managing the tech stack
  • Managing the sales process to help scale
  • Territory planning
  • Measuring a lot on the marketing side
  • Managing the flow of data between various tools to make sure the -
    data stays consistent
  • Sales enablement with tools and best practices
  • Getting data in the hands of the reps as well

Stay tuned for our next Sales Operations Meetup! Next month’s will cover end of the year reporting and 2018 planning. Subscribe to the DataFox podcast to get the recording.

Interested in all things sales ops? Download our ebook: The Complete Guide to Sales Operations.