Have A Dedicated Person at Helm
It is essential you have someone who’s primary responsibility is to oversee daily maintenance and use of your system. This person need not be as high as the Chief Exec, what is important is that they understand why the system is going in and what’s wonderful about it.
You should be aware that you may well be creating a new role here. Apply some thought to exactly which person will do this for you. Unless someone is super-keen or related to Clark Kent, giving the role to a quota-carrier would probably be too onerous a burden. Equally, a Sales Support role from administration ranks could find rapid encroachment from the pressures of other tasks that crop up daily.
Think carefully about the precise nature of the tasks this person would need to perform. These tell you the kind of qualities you should be on the look out for:
- They will need to learn the software inside out and be able to field calls from forgetful salesreps asking which buttons to press to do a particular task.
- They will also be required to inspire use of the system. Their passion for what it can do must come across. They will have to advocate the many merits of the system, as they will need to motivate reluctant salesreps to tinkle the ivories. The truth will be many salesreps cannot set their Video Recorder Timers, so are bound to feel intimidated by new software at work. Also, many may suspect the breath of Big Brother frostily blowing on their necks. Surely the kit was bought for more than merely policing potential slopers?
- Many projects can stall because no-one tries to move a particular issue forward. The person you need will note that a log-jam has occurred and gently nudge the relevant people (usually from other departments) to help everything along.
- Dog Catcher
- Amazingly, nobody ever uses new software. In fact, my personal experience is that the take up of software is remarkably similar to the proportions of salesrep-success-o-meter; where 10% of your salesreps will be over target, 20% not far off, 50% average performers and 20% no-hopers. IT history is littered with huge purchase failures because no one has actually used the software bought. So it is the person’s job at The Helm to round up all the strays and makes sure they behave themselves in the pound!
My advice would be to re-arrange your support staff to create the ’space’ for someone to do this job. The best person for it being someone who hopes to move into sales themselves one day.