One trillion dollars. A decrease in sales team’s productivity costs companies $1 trillion per year. A whopping figure, isn’t it? And the reason is in the way people communicate and collaborate at work, not sales reps’ incompetence. Frankly speaking, almost every team of any size and industry faces a performance loss here, there and everywhere.
What if I told you there’s one thing that will help you ramp up the sales team productivity? It’s neither a new selling methodology nor some magic motivation training. This one thing that enhances an overall company’s performance is a team messenger.
Let’s scramble for answers on how tech solutions overcome challenges that are dragging your sales team performance down.
All the benefits you’ve missed while ignoring team communication tools
You might be wondering: how exactly do team communication tools foster the sales workflow? That’s a fair question. First, take some time to recall the last collaboration issues you’ve dealt with. I won’t be surprised if your challenge is related to:
- Missing deadlines
- Failing to keep team members in sync
- Having no up-to-date information concerning the work
- Not being informed of new products, price tweaks and sales strategies
- Mislaying important documents
- Not being aware of who is doing what
This list increases geometrically if your sales team is distributed. Breaking each above-mentioned issue down, you may notice that all of them are based mainly on the miscommunication that happens between team members.
Why not start making benefit from team communication tools right now?
Accessible from anywhere, anytime
Took a day off? Launch a mobile version of the team messenger on your phone and stay up to date with the tasks your colleagues are working on. Need an access to a crucial document while working from home? Did your laptop crash without warning? Just log into the team communication app on any other computer or mobile device and get all the files you need.
Team messengers enable collaboration on the go
It’s like having an all-in-one business dashboard
The average sales company has a minimum of five tools in the stack and is in process of getting more. You may add lots of communication apps (Skype, Viber, WhatsApp, etc.) to this list. Here’s something we can both agree on: it’s ridiculously easy to miss a thing when you should keep an eye on all these office tools.
Luckily, team messengers come equipped with various app integrations saving you from switching between tools. This gives your sales team the freedom to use third-party apps that are vital to the workflow and collaborate on real-time data. Just paint the following picture: all your work tools from Stripe to Intercom report into particular chat in the team messenger. Sounds impressive, doesn’t it? Here’s an example of how we get notifications from MailChimp right in a chat:
MailChimp integration with a team messenger
Wrapping up, team communication tools are capable of turning into an all-in-one, powerful business dashboard that takes teamwork to a new level.
Collaborate seamlessly in real time
Instant messaging improves overall team collaboration and streamlines sales operations in the following ways:
- Notify your entire team about crucial updates and critical situations in one click
- Check out if important messages are read
- Access the entire company file directory in no time
- Cooperate effectively with distributed colleagues using screen sharing feature
Experience speedy decision making
I think you’ll agree with me when I say: we all hate meetings. However, they are a crucial part of a decision-making process in every company. Team communication apps have eliminated the number of endless and counterproductive meetings with the help the following features:
- Video conferencing
- Group chats dedicated to a quick status update
- Poll feature
Teamwork may become chaotic without a centralized hub to process all the incoming data. Who is doing what? Where is the information located? How many tasks are left to be done? Make it easy for your salespeople to have instant access to the latest product specs and contracts from any device—laptop, tablet or phone.
Moreover, team messengers are great for getting a little more personal with the colleagues.
For instance, here’s a screenshot of an image I have recently received from my office co-worker:
Pretty sweet, isn’t it? 🙂
… and find everything from one search box
Have you ever scanned your email inbox to find that one piece of information buried deep within a thread? I have too and it’s no picnic! Luckily, team communication tools make it dead simple to find the link that your teammate Hannah posted 3 months ago.
Willing to adapt a team communication tool? Don’t be spoilt for choice
There’s plenty of fish in the sea of team communication tools. What is the best, you ask? I probably don’t need to tell you that the answer depends on the size and unique needs of your sales team. Let’s look through the following list of tools and their key features to give you food for thought.
Nextiva’s Cloud PBX system is a private communication system that operates in the cloud. Run your company’s entire phone system on your existing broadband internet connection. Manage your VoIP phone system without any of the hassles of an on-premises PBX system. A few of the benefits include cost savings (about 60%), zero maintenance and secure private connection.
Chanty is an AI-powered business messenger for small and medium teams. Its key features include:
- AI that identifies and gather important information and key takeaways from chats
- Unlimited searchable message history
- Plenty of storage space
- Generously easy-to-use and User-friendly interface
Pricing: Free (the product is at the early access stage).
If you haven’t heard of Slack by now, where have you been? Slack is a famous team communication tool from Silicon Valley which is known for:
- Feature-rich, yet a little bit messy interface
- 800+ integrations with third-party platforms (only 10 integrations for free)
- 5 GB of file storage (on a Free plan)
- Native audio/video calls for up to 15 people (paid plan)
- Searchable message history is limited by 10K messages
Pricing: Free basics, Standard plan: $6.67 per user per month, Plus plan: $15 per user per month. For those who find Slack overpriced, there are many cost-effective alternatives for you to consider.
If you decide to build a communication hub around already used Office 365, the simplest choice is Microsoft Teams. There are a few points about the tool for you to consider:
- Rough installation process
- Full integration across Office 365 apps
- Every user of the team has to set up a unique email firstname.lastname@example.org in order to log in
- Lack of technical issues
Pricing: Starting at $5 per user per month for Microsoft Office 365 package that includes Microsoft Teams.
Flock is a team messenger attempting to link up project collaboration and team communication. Its key features include:
- Unlimited message history as well as unlimited integrations in its free package (with 40+ integrations overall in Flock)
- Ability to invite business partners, freelancers and vendors to chat
- Video meetings with up to 8 teammates
- Native polls and to-do lists
- Multiple languages interface( English, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish languages)
Pricing: Free plan, Pro plan ($3 per user, per month).
Ryver is attempting to combine team communication and task management in one app. It can be distinguished by:
- Counterintuitive interface
- Native Trello-like task manager
- Unlimited file storage
- Built-in integration with FreeConference app, up to 400 people
Pricing: Free plan (with no ability to assign tasks), $19 for 5 task users, $49 for 15 task users, $99 unlimited task users.
Note: You’ll have to pay extra for Zapier plan if you need integrations with third-party services.
Everyone and their mom know that selling is tough. To stay ahead of the game, salespeople have to take part in the day-to-day competitive battle where all’s fair. In particular, adopting a team communication tool adds significant value to the sales team’s workflow:
- Collaborating in real time and on the go
- Having an access to all important documents, links and conversations from anywhere, anytime
- Getting notifications from your sales tool stack in one place to never miss a thing
- Speeding up a decision-making process
- Keeping all the invoices, proposals, contracts, etc. under one roof
What communication and productivity challenges do your salespeople face? Does using a team collaboration tool solve these issues in your team? Share your insights in comments below.
Author: Julia Samoilenko is a Marketing Manager at Chanty – a simple AI-powered business messenger and a single notification center. This powerful and free Slack alternative is aimed to increase team productivity and improve communication at work. Having a 5-year experience in digital marketing field, Julia is responsible for Chanty’s online social media presence and public relations. Follow Julia on Twitter or feel free to connect on LinkedIn.