Sales leaders in the UK are confident that their teams could move to a more permanent remote selling scenario with nearly two-thirds (60%) ready to make the switch. This is according to a study conducted by Freshworks Inc., the customer engagement software company, which looked at the impact of COVID-19 on sales teams around the world.
The British sales leaders surveyed by Freshworks represent mid-sized to large organisations with 250+ employees, operating in a range of industries including manufacturing, financial services, healthcare and IT.
Sales teams in all sectors have been forced to make dramatic changes to the way they operate in recent months, and many have increased their investment in technology to do this. According to the research, 87% of sales leaders are hosting regular virtual meetings and 55% are focusing on sales enablement and digital training sessions to keep their teams engaged and productivity levels up.
Arun Mani, President, Freshworks Europe, comments: “While some of the strictest lockdown measures are starting to ease, many businesses that can work remotely will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Sales executives typically rely on relationships built through face-to-face communication and networking to close deals. But these encouraging statistics indicate that sales leaders are adapting their approach to the current climate, to enable remote selling and set their teams up for growth in the short and mid-term.
“Technology is at the heart of how we’re all adapting to the new normal, and at Freshworks, we’re committed to helping our clients step up interactions both within their own internal teams and their customers at this time. We’ve just integrated Slack into our core products like Freshsales, Freshdesk, and Freshservice to help boost productivity, and our upcoming Freshbot integration with Slack will enable bots to listen in on conversations and chime in with relevant information from our knowledge base.
The research found that 83% of sales teams were using the current environment as an opportunity to build better relationships with customers, while 68% were focusing on cleaning, and getting more in-depth insights from, their CRM systems. “It is a prime time to strengthen relationships, especially with the top 10% of your customer base. Your strongest customers today are likely to be your strongest customers tomorrow, and if organisations can show themselves to be a valuable partner in this difficult time, the opportunity for upselling may well appear,” concludes Mani.