Sales Force Automation (SFA) refers to software apps for sales management. SFA provides automated workflows that create a streamlined sales process to manage business leads, sales forecasts and team performance.
SFA may also be referred to as Salesforce Management.
Sales Force Automation (SFA) in detail
The main features of a SFA system are contact management and opportunity management, together with email, task management and diary sharing.
Contact management software lets you track your communication with your customers, building up a complete history of your interactions, sales and activities.
Opportunity management software provides sales lead tracking from an initial inquiry through to a closed sale. It lets you track each sales opportunity through your pipeline, applying probability weighting and forecasting.
SFA is usually a part of a customer relationship management (CRM) system that automatically records all the stages in a sales process. The idea is to track all contact that’s been made with a customer, along with the purpose of the contact, and any follow up that may be needed. This might include phone calls, emails and meetings. Having this information at your fingertips means you’ll reduce the risk of irritating your customers as sales efforts are not duplicated.
With SFA task management, when you create a task or reminder in the customer’s account it integrates with your calendar. So when you open the task all the customer’s data and past communications are there in front of you. Once the task is completed it is automatically added to the account record, creating a complete histrory of your interactions.
Sales Force Automation has come into its own with the arrival of cloud technology. Accessing the CRM system through your internet browser means you can retrieve the data wherever you are, seeing the latest updates. You can have multiple users all accessing and editing a customer’s account at any one time, creating a central hub for your business.
This is particularly useful if you have a remote workforce. Sales professionals working from home or on the road can login and see the same information as their colleagues at head office. There’s no need to synchronize the data as everything is updated in real-time.
Cloud App Integration
The arrival of cloud computing has brought a number of advantages that have particularly benefited small businesses. Not only is it very affordable but it also means you can connect your various disparate systems. Cloud integration lets you automate the flow of data between the different systems you use, creating efficiency and increasing productivity.
Not only can you automate your sales processes but you can also create workflows for other manual processes.
Sales Force Automation can be customized to reflect the processes of an individual organization. It can run on laptops or smartphones and can be of quite a specialist design. For example, for pharmaceutical sales representatives or maybe for the collection of electricity or gas meter readings.
Helen is the Marketing Manager at Really Simple Systems, a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and Chartered Marketer.
The original version of this blog appears on reallysimplesystems.com and written by Helen Armour