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Will the enterprise market spend significant IT budget on Windows Vista in 2007?



What Lessons Can SFA Software Take from a GPS?
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ScoreCast automatically reports opportunity information to ScoreManager, where it is formatted to suit the manager’s perspective. ScoreManager is the sales manager’s interface. It aggregates and consolidates a single dashboard view of the entire sales landscape and visually alerts managers to important changes within the sea of opportunities they monitor. Other systems collect a lot of the same data and leave you with a vague sense that “it’s in there somewhere”; ScoreManager puts it all in front of you, on a single dashboard, in full context.

ScoreManager allows management to build and deploy a company sales methodology, so that new salespeople can ramp quickly and the entire team has a shared understanding of forecast stages. ScoreManager provides the same information-dense dashboard and one click access to everything that ScoreCast delivers, whether in online or offline mode.

ScoreManager causes a fundamental change in the interaction between sales management and salespeople. Without ScoreManager, when a manager wants to work with a salesperson on an opportunity, they have to start with a recital of what’s been happening and a Q&A about who’s got the money, how they buy, etc. Only once the background is understood can they begin discussing ways to move the deal ahead.

With ScoreManager, the manager already knows the current profile of the opportunity including what happened last. From this vantage point, the dialogue easily shifts to strategizing the best way to win business. Time spent is more productive and satisfying for all concerned. The manager is doing the job he or she loves.

ScoreManager also fulfills rigorous analytic requirements. It allowing user-defined fields exposed through custom views of live data. All views are live . . . even the forecast view allows you to drill down into current detail. ScoreSight coined the phrase, “Multiple Points of Validation” to describe the depth of information a manger can access by drilling into a live dashboard view of the forecast. It all works because the information is enthusiastically input by salespeople to advance their deals. That’s why they say, “ScoreSight ends sales reporting as you know it today.”

ScoreSight should be of particular interest to software startup companies. They can build early process and structure, provision their new hires, and set up the means to capture lessons learned. Imagine new salespeople, geographically isolated, encountering customers and learning what does and does not work. How quickly they can capture, share, and translate that learning into repeatable methods for the rest of the company can make a big difference in the new company's growth rate!

Why ScoreSight Works
Remember playing with a mobile as a kid? It could be a jumble of strings, sticks and shapes hanging clumsily if you picked it up in the wrong place, but if you picked it up in just the right place, those same pieces would fall into perfect balance. Sales software is like that. ScoreSight founders understood complex sales from every angle. They elected to begin by solving the problem of revenue generation – the toughest task. And by solving that problem, everything else just fell into place.

Knowing the Sales User
ScoreSight‘s value proposition serves the entire sales chain of command. It recognizes that salespeople are intelligent, competitive, goal-oriented achievers. They are also impatient, distractible, and intolerant of anything that does not at least partially serve their interests. They like to keep score of deals closed, quota attained, rank among peers and so on.

Sales managers typically have come up through the ranks and generally have the personality characteristics enumerated above. In addition, they are often exceptional closers with talent to lead, and were promoted in order to help close more deals and mentor the team. But many are frustrated by the time-burden of preparing and presenting reports and by missing the chance to make the best contribution.

Motivating the Sales User
ScoreSight is the easiest way a salesperson can manage and close a high volume of complex sales opportunities. The developers of ScoreSight recognized that in order to take powerful informed actions, users need to have full context of the activity and all necessary resources at their fingertips. The ScoreSight GUI delivers on this so well, it quickly becomes the primary application for most users. ScoreSight frees sales management to do what they want to do, close business and lead salespeople.

Here’s what one sales user had to say:
Dan Kehoe, Sales, Kazeon, Inc.: “Kazeon was looking for a sales forecast solution that allowed the company to get a quick snapshot of the pipeline and forecast of all salespeople at any time. We wanted a tool that was easy to deploy and allows traveling salespeople to work "off-line". ScoreCast fit the bill. It gives management visibility into what we are doing and provides meaningful information to sales reps for managing their time and energy relative to the pipeline.”

Here are comments from sales management:
Craig Smith, VP of Sales and Professional Services, Media Publisher: “I wanted to build a sales methodology so my new people would know immediately how to go after business in the Media Publisher company way. I sat down with my best salesperson, interviewed him to learn his methods, then worked with the ScoreSight consultant and found the best way to implement the process in the ScoreSight Progress Form. It was easy to build once we knew what we wanted, and I was able to change it later without disrupting anything! I see my new reps ramping much more quickly now. The quality of my sales organization has improved with ScoreSight. Without reservation, I recommend it.”

Mara S. Henderson, President, Imagitek, Ltd.: “We have utilized several sales force automation tools in the past – all of which, quite frankly, gave me a perspective on ‘old’ data. SCOREsight is the first tool that we have seen that truly gives us a view to where we need to go, versus where we have been.”

Dave Frye, Director, Eagle Mapping, Inc.: “Our 2007 plans call for 50% growth and we purchased ScoreSight to meet those goals. ScoreSight gives me and my team deep visibility into opportunities and forecasts. It’s not a passive collector of data, but rather an integral part of our sales process and adds value to every user.”

Future Products
I asked Mike Schaefer, CEO and Founder of ScoreSight, to give me a sneak peek into their future.

Mike Schaefer: “In April, ScoreSight will deliver a product for the CEO and executive management. This product will be a comprehensive executive rollup of forecasts, objectives, and rankings. Its purpose is to provide the ultimate in comprehension of what’s happening within global working teams, utilizing different methodologies and collaborating on multiple opportunities.”

Mike Schaefer: “Many people have asked us to provide a UI to their existing CRM system, so that complex sales opportunities can be tracked within the encompassing structure CRM provides. They see the volume and high quality information captured in ScoreSight and want to make it available to downstream applications. We are carefully considering that idea.”

Now for my reservations:
ScoreSight is young company. Their product is V3 and has production users, but to date, no customer has more than 50 sales users. ScoreSight could fall prey to a single large customer that dictates their product direction. ScoreSight needs to establish a reseller channel in order to grow rapidly, an effort they have only recently begun.

That said, I’ll go back to the beginning: This product is something special. Users will want to use it because it helps get them where they want to go. It’s easy to set up and easy to learn. It is a whole new class of software because it is the first product that will help you produce more revenue and deliver the most accurate forecast ever.

My advice: Take a look at this company, they’re on to something!

ScoreSight matches quite well with the slogan of The Podium Group, “ACCELERATING TIME TO MONEY”. Best wishes for 2007 revenue growth from The Podium Group!

Comple this form to contact ScoreSight. You will also automatically be entered into a draw for a FREE Garmin GPS.
Enter to win a free GPS
Please rank the following sales concerns at your company
Forecasting Accuracy: *

Does ScoreSight really deliver like a GPS?
Click the logo to go to their website and see for yourself.
Increasing Revenue:  *
Enforceable Sales Methodology:  *
Ramping New Hires:  *
Report Preparation Time:  *
How do you currently manage opportunities and forecasts?  *
How many quota carrying sales people do you have?  *
How does your company sell?  *
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GPS draw will take place March 31, 2007. Only the winner will be contacted. The winner's name will be announced on www.ScoreSight.com between April 1, 2007 - April 15, 2007.

If you know others who would be interested in ScoreSight or would like to be entered for a FREE GPS draw, please click here.

This article was sponsored by ScoreSight.

Austin F. Ford, Jr. is the Founder of The Podium Group. Founded to help emerging companies shorten private investment cycles and increase revenue streams as quickly as possible, the firm focuses on developing and executing business, marketing and selling strategy with achievable targets and realistic commitments to shareholders. Austin has provided business services including planning, marketing, and sales consulting for a variety of startup and emerging firms, as well as process improvement consulting to domestic and international companies including Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Sony, and Johnson and Johnson. As a founding member of three companies that were acquired, he collaborated on business and marketing strategy and had functional responsibility for marketing and sales. Austin has a BS degree from Holy Cross College and an MBA from Pepperdine University. For article feedback, Austin can be contacted on 925.872.7900.


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