Are sales inefficiencies costing your company millions? A recent surveyby Apttus and Adobe found many organizations polled admit to profit-eroding problems ranging from flawed sales processes, inaccuratequotes and inexact sales forecasts.

Most surprising?“Twenty-five percent of sales professionals could notsay with confidence whether or not their company is successful – ashocking depiction of the siloed, disconnected nature of manycompanies,” says Elliott Yama, AVP of Best Practice and KnowledgeManagement for Apttus.

Shedding Light on the Problem

To gather data, Apttus and Adobe polled 140 respondents from Fortune 1000 companies across a range of industries. Surveyors asked respondents to answer 35 questions, which focused on revenue goals, sales and contracting systems, and internal processes to get a snapshot of their sales practices and perceptions.

What was not surprising, said Yama, is that half of companies owned up to significant and costly mistakes in the quoting process. “As this statistic shows, quoting still remains a significant hurdle across multiple industries,” he says. “This affirmation of the need for our offerings was not surprising to us, but it’s still a detail that we believe is incredibly important to both growing and established businesses.”

Other problematic findings among respondents included:

  • 20 percent couldn’t state or estimate their win rate
  • 40 percent of companies need three or more days to get a quote out the door
  • Nearly half take more than a week to get contracts signed
  • More than 33 percent don’t manage renewals effectively
  • 20 percent have “chronically inaccurate” sales forecasts
  • One quarter don’t have insight into critical sales performance metric

“The results bring to light the most significant issues negatively impacting the sales process – key problems that sales managers may immediately recognize and relate to,” says Yama. “Companies often shy away from discussions about improving their quoting process – too often, the expenses and lengthy time required to finish a complete Quote-to-Cash cycle is simply accepted.”

Learning Opportunities

Seeking answers

So what’s the solution?

One option might be to consider using an end-to-end solution to eliminate complications and save money, says Yama. Increasing awareness about where problems lurk can also prompt changes.

“Don’t underestimate the complexities of your own business. Modern business is a funnel that leads from sales to quote generation to operations to revenue management, and each stop along the way can create delays, pitfalls and bottlenecks,” he says."This survey ideally will bring to light the significant amount of money and time that brands are leaving on the table instead of seeking to optimize their processes."

Title image by MaxFX /