The continuous growth of consumers’ ability to research their interests drastically changed the sales and marketing landscape for many sales and marketing teams.
The sales and marketing landscape is a continuously fast-evolving field thanks to the newest technologies that enable sales operations teams to engage buyers during a sales process.
Access to customer information, metrics, and workflow automation make customer interactions faster and easier.
With the explosion of digital technologies, companies are exhausting vast quantities of data about consumers’ activities for both operations for online and offline sales ops.
Customers are more likely to be repeat customers when they are guided throughout the sales process. 93% of customers are more likely to repeat purchases with excellent customer service companies.
And in today’s modern world, every sales team must look for modern solutions to help them sell more, for easier and quicker sales operations.
With all these in the fast and ever-evolving technology, the shifts in how sales operations teams do their work are much more evident as they take a new interest in sales enablement and operations.
As buying sales have become more and more complicated. Now more than ever, many organizations are approaching sales as a team endeavor – one where sales operations roles help one another to push through the sales cycle.
Although the concepts of sales enablement and sales operations are not new in the field, they are still constantly used interchangeably.
So, if you are someone who regularly encounters these concepts but still gets confused, then you are reading the right article!
Let us start looking at these concepts individually and when working together.
What is Sales Enablement?
Sales enablement is equal to the sales and marketing alignment by giving the sales operation team by giving them the resources they need to close deals and increase revenue growth.
These resources may include onboarding and continuous sales reps training, content for selling and building brands, and development of product knowledge to equip sales reps to sell the products and services.
Basically, sales enablement helps organize and streamline sales processes. It involves a sales enablement team to merge the use of technology and the people to align them towards sales efficiency and sales goals.
As it is multi-layered, it requires ongoing collaboration across the sales teams to ensure a smooth-sailing partnership between sales and marketing teams.
In the process of sales enablement, you set up a sales team and equip them for success before they go out and engage with customers. Sales enablement focuses on helping the sales operations team to analyze results and improve sales productivity.
For example, the sales enablement team focuses on creating accounts and onboarding tools to measure key performance metrics of all sales operations and initiatives.
Another example is the use of sales enablement technology for developing sales techniques that support reps in their training and coaching by providing them with sales resources.
The dedicated sales enablement person typically aligns sales and marketing following the same strategy and vision toward sales readiness. As mentioned, it helps them prepare a sales organization for market movement towards sales growth.
Hubspot reported that 65% of sales leaders who have exceeded revenue targets had their own sales enablement teams.
Sales Enablement Roles and Responsibilities
- Management of sales enablement tools
- Onboarding of new sales hiring
- Sales development for effective coaching practices or establishing a formal sales coaching program
- Reporting on metrics tied to sales readiness
- Implementation of the sales methodology related to training and coaching
Sales enablement specialists, also known as sales specialist or business development representative, is tasked to manage and supervise the use of sales enablement tools in the overall sales process.
Although some companies would have sales enablement supports with a dedicated person. However, for some organizations, it takes a lot of team members to ensure sales force productivity. Some of them include sales managers, sales enablement specialists, and other members who may perform administrative tasks or other sales enablement work.
In other cases, streamlining their activities would mean the use of a powerful CRM. It is said that 74% of organizations that employ CRM and marketing automation in their sales process have much more aligned sales and marketing divisions.
Is Sales Enablement Similar to Sales Training of Sales Reps?
Well, because most sales enablement involves activities that train reps and boost the competencies of sales teams, it can be pretty easy to assume that sales enablement is equivalent to sales training.
While creating training activities and tools is an integral part of sales enablement strategies, it is not the only thing this team does.
The primary goal of the sales enablement team is to provide sales representatives and managers with sales enablement tools, technology, and information needed to execute it at the highest level.
It may include working on the buyer’s journey, personas, sale strategies, product guides, and sales platforms. Part of the sales enablement work involves collaborating with the sales manager to train reps and have them onboarded with the company.
Working with sales managers can clearly establish the various milestones that the sales representatives need to achieve for improved sales effectiveness and sales productivity. They are the closest stakeholders that sales enablement works with.
What are Sales Operations?
Sales operations is a broad term that refers to a lot of different things which can include concepts such as sales techniques, sales training, CRM structuring and maintenance, performance tracking, quota management, employee incentives, and others.
Basically, sales operations refer to the various actions and processes used by sales teams to aid them close deals and making sales.
Dedicated sales managers are frequently used by businesses. A sales operations manager, for example, is focused on making sure that daily operational tasks are seamlessly and efficiently working.
Thus, sales operations ensure that the overall team performance runs like a well-oiled machine.
Sales Operations Roles and Responsibilities
A sales operations team is to guarantee that the structure of the team is excellent for sales effectiveness. Sales operations have a number of strategic actions that are vital to business success.
Some of these roles and responsibilities include:
- Recruiting and training new sales reps
- Creating sales and revenue strategy
- Creating geographical map
- Creating compensation arrangements
- Managing sales tech stack
- Streamlining and optimizing the entire sales process
Sales operations are primarily responsible for the evaluation and selection of the sales productivity tools and technologies that can optimize the entire sales process – allowing teams to focus on making sales rather than other administrative tasks.
Among these tools and technologies include robust CRM, time, lead, prospect management, and ERP solutions.
In addition, sales operations work with sales executives to establish a framework, training, compensation, employee incentives, and others.
The sales operations manager may be assigned to perform and oversee all operations and sales enablement responsibilities in companies. Therefore, it takes a team effort to build the most successful types of sales operations.
Is It Really Sales Enablement vs Sales Operations?
While sales enablement and sales operations aim to empower the sales force, optimize the sales cycle, and support reps, both concepts execute their roles in everyday operational tasks very differently.
Generally, sales enablement supports the sales ops team with content, information, and enablement platform required for buyer interaction and engagement for the completion of the sales cycle. Sales operations, on the other hand, work with the sales engineering, and daily processes of the sales team to ensure sales efficiency to boost the overall sales performance.
The difference between sales enablement and sales operations include the following:
As per their roles, sales enablement is much more focused on having the right sales platform and sources that teams need to reach out to buyers and help them make a confident decision about their purchase.
Thus, sales enablement emphasizes persuading the buyer-facing marketing collateral and helps them arrive at a sound decision.
Meanwhile, sales operations focus on sales effectiveness and how day-to-day operations are carried out.
When you have two teams work to focus on different goals, it can lead to disorganization. Thus, it is imperative that they both are aware of the actual goals of the business to avoid any mishaps in the long run.
In terms of setting goals, sales enablement primarily focuses on equipping sales representatives with resources to carry out the sales process more effectively. For example, sales enablement may help in the structuring of content for reps, so they can retrieve their resources quickly.
On the other hand, sales operations, although they may also focus on data and information, sales operations are much more focused on the existing sales process. In order to ensure that things are seamlessly running, sales operations set goals based on performance-tracking data. These data may include KPIs such as closed deals or win rates, sales cycle length, lead response time, and revenue growth, among others.
Tech Stack Duties
Both sales operations and sales enablement use tech in order to accomplish everyday operational tasks. However, the two concepts use tech differently.
In a nutshell, sales enablement use tech to identify strengths in content performance. Sales enablement also aims to find the latest technologies that reps can use to elevate their performance, perhaps a new sales platform or a sales force platform. These tools added to the tech stack of sales reps empower them and boost their ability to do their job better.
Once these needs have been addressed, the sales operations have to ensure that the tech is doing its job and running smoothly.
Well, the truth is, the difference between sales enablement and sales operations are undeniable. However, despite their differences, these two concepts work best when businesses are able to use them hand-in-hand.
Sales enablement and sales operations should be integrated to achieve a seamless sales process.
As mentioned, the complexities of today’s sales process and sales operations can eventually take a toll on every sales team. And this should not be the case. Integrating these concepts for your business and finding the right tech tool to help your sales team will be the best move for increasing sales productivity.
If you are looking for the right tech tool, you may want to consider Sloovi.
With Sloovi, optimizes your business through powerful sales tools that help your business reach out to your customers plus automated marketing tools that make complex operations simple. If you are hungry to know more, request a demo today!