Sales Process and Structure

Sales Processes-the

Production Functions of


Process thinking in sales and marketing is not very pronounced in the B2B. Clearly efficiency enhancement potentials still lie here

Also Sales is a production process. No parts are manufactured, but orders, sales and contribution margins are produced. While processes in production often have been thoroughly analyzed and examined for efficiency enhancement potentials, sales work usually is less well structured.

In fact when eg. introducing a CRM system (Customer-Relationship Management), sales processes are already clearly defined, but most of the time this is still not sufficient to map the entire sales process.

In principle, the sales structure should support and not hinder the defined and agreed processes as well as the sales strategy. For example, if, after a sales strategy creation or a process optimization project, it is necessary to come out that the existing structure no longer fits, it must be restructured. The old rule “Structure follows Strategy” applies. This is the only way to achieve the sales targets set.

Sales, too, have processes

Optimization of the Sales and Marketing Processes

Mastering sales and marketing processes play a crucial role in being successful in the market. Learn more>>

Structure Follows Strategy


What helps the best strategy and lean processes when the sales structure is the real bottleneck? Learn more>>

It is worth managing sales processes and thus

increase sales efficiency

Sales Management System and Sales Handbook

for all sales processes

Successful companies not only define their sales and marketing processes, but also focus on continuously optimizing the individual stages of the process. Learn more>>

Does a CRM system make sense to your business?

Target Definitions and Selection of a CRM system

Customer – Relationship Management (CRM) is an integrated sales and marketing tool that is applied at all levels (horizontally and vertically) of the company from development to sales and “after sales service.” Learn more>>

Optimizing Sales and

Marketing Processes

Sales and marketing processes offer plenty of opportunities for optimization

Sales, too, has


Mastering sales and marketing processes play a crucial role in being successful in the market. Process optimization is not just an issue for the production or management of a company. “The goal is to question processes holistically, optimize them according to lean principles, and support new processes through an effective organization.”

Misplaced priorities, lack of analysis, slow and complicated processes, poor decision-making structures and many other stumbling blocks prevent the necessary efficiency and speed in sales and marketing. Without process optimization of the entire sales and marketing organization, the weaknesses can usually not be solved.

By recording and evaluating the sales processes and their contribution to the goal, taking into account capacity use and profit contribution, first potentials for optimization quickly can be unsealed.

As part of process optimization, the individual process steps are analyzed and then optimized

The process phases cover the entire customer lifecycle as well as all sales and marketing activities such as:

  • Target customer selection, lead generation and qualification
  • Marketing measures such as mailings, trade fairs, salesfolders
  • Argumentation content, customer interaction
  • Request management
  • Appointments, initial calls, follow-up calls, follow-up
  • calculations, quotation creation, offer approval
  • Offer design and proposal management
  • Order confirmations, order changes, supply contracts
  • Conditions, reminder procedures, conditions regulations
  • Planning, budgeting, reporting, activity planning

The goal of business process optimization can be based on the specific situation differently. In general, in the course of the optimization the following questions should be answered:

  • Can be work duplication or unnecessary administration be waived?
  • Is it possible to simplify process elements or to standardize?
  • Is it possible to automate process elements?
  • Can the order of activities be optimized?
  • Is it possible to design process elements mistreatment-proof?
  • Is it possible to eliminate non-value-adding elements?

Consulting example “Optimizing Sales and Marketing Processes”

  • Reappraisal of the most important processes (workshops)
  • Analysis of processes and comparison of process output with market requirements
  • Definition of the process output to be sought and compared to actual output
  • Identifying weaknesses and interface issues
  • Development of new, pragmatic and effective processes and instructions for action (including a task matrix, timelines, process description, interface management based on the company’s requirements, objectives and market requirements)
  • Implementation and pilot phase, if necessary. Further optimization/adjustment
  • for example Review and adaptation of the organization structure to the new processes
  • Development of process controlling and measurable process indicators to monitor subprocesses (actual output versus target)
  • Building a proposal system for employees (problems and suggestions) for centralized uptake and continuous optimization

© New Business Consulting GmbH


The sales structure must follow and support the sales strategy

Structure Follows Strategy

What helps the best strategy and lean processes when the sales structure is the real bottleneck? A structure that is not oriented towards the market, objectives and sales strategy remains relatively worthless. The structure should be simple, cost-effective and customer-oriented.

  • Is your sales structure properly positioned to optimally serve the market and does it support the sales strategy?
  • Are inefficiencies and disturbances detected in the structure?

The correct sales structure in many cases is influenced by the respective industry-positioning of the companies. However, it is in many industries, that Key Account Managers look after major customers or strategic customers.

In the following some examples of how sales may be structured:

  • Based on products or product groups
  • Based on sales tasks (e.g. new customer acquisition, existing customers)
  • Based on geographical regions
  • Based on industries
  • Based on customer size classes (Key Accounts, A, B, C customers)

Beside the field sales the customer service also needs to be assigned accordingly to the regions/segments or works as a centralized department.

Sales Management System &

Sales Handbook for all


The sales manual provides a good basis for fixing the processes. Ideal for new employees for quick learning

It’s worth it

to lead sales processes

and thereby

increase sales-efficiency

Successful companies define not only their sales and marketing processes, but also focus on the continuous optimization of the individual process steps.

  • Are the sales processes clearly defined, documented and consistently aligned towards your customers/markets?
  • Is there an accurate, written explanation for each step?
  • Are training modules, checklists and tools defined and available for each step of the process?
  • Are there clearly defined workflows (for example, new customer acquisition, bid preparation, complaint processing

Is there a comprehensive sales manual on hand?

  • Is there clearly demonstrated in the sales process what information and tools from the sales system can be used?
  • Are processes defined, described and trained across all sectors (e.g. cooperation sales/internal service/production planning)?
  • Are responsibilities, decision-making skills and information obligations clearly regulated over all processes (e.g. an RACI matrix)?

The Sales Management System is developed in workshops with the executives of the sales-relevant areas and implemented in individual process steps. Clear responsibilities, content, time and format requirements as well as information obligations are developed and regulated (RACI matrix).

The sales processes vary greatly from industry to industry and affect large parts of the organization such as internal service, field sales, marketing, product management, logistics, quality management, supply chain and IT. The implementation on the operational staff takes place through workshops and training.

Consulting example “Sales Management System and Sales Handbook”

  • Sales strategy and – objectives
  • Budget planning, forecasting, rolling forecast, deviation analyses
  • Processes for customer tenders
  • Opportunity- and Risk Management
  • New customer acquisition and lead management
  • Activity planning
  • Definition, selection and management of key accounts
  • Contracts, contracts and agreements with customers
  • Visit reports and customer portfolio planning
  • Complaint management
  • KPIs and Reporting
  • Definition, selection and implementation support of a CRM system based on a specifications

© New Business Consulting GmbH

Target Definitions and Selection of a


The definition of a CRM system should not be left to the software providers, but it must be examined internally on the basis of sales and company objectives whether and to what extent the investment makes sense.

Does a CRM-System make

Sense for your Organization?

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is an integrated sales and marketing tool that is applied at all levels (horizontally and vertically) of the company (from development to sales and “after sales service.”

If you look at the definition rather technically, you can use CRM to maintain and understand customer relationships through a software solution that includes all business operations and information.

Although the usefulness of good CRM products is now undisputed, there are numerous cases for unsuccessful or failed introductions of the sales software because even the best sales software does not replace missing sales processes or incorrect expectations due to poor target provisions.

Together with a selection of sales representatives, we analyze the existing sales process, help define the objectives of the CRM system (what it is supposed to achieve and what advantage it can bring) and then select a suitable system based on a detailed specifications and product brief.

Thus there are several factors to consider when selecting a CRM system:

  • Functionality
  • Simple Operation
  • Mobility
  • Integration into existing IT systems
  • Extensibility
  • Profitability
  • Security (for example, customer data)

The CRM software provides the IT infrastructure to manage customer relationships. Just as CRM can be broken down into sub-areas, CRM software solutions are available with different levels. This ranges from data mining and business Intelligence functions in analytical CRM systems via contact databases and campaign management in operational CRM systems to portal solutions for cross-company use.

The basis is always a database in which information about customers is stored. At its core, it’s about the interplay of communication channels, processes and data. Which CRM software is suitable for you depends on your situation. That’s why the “as is analysis” phase is important to get clarity about where you currently stand and what you want to achieve.

Consulting example “Target definition and selection of a CRM system”

  • Definition objective of the CRM system and benefits
  • As-Is-Analysis (Corporate Strategy, Sales and Marketing Strategy, Processes, Sales Structure and Organization)
  • As-is-analysis of customer structures and segments, communication types, required data, customer processes, customer profiles, relationship management
  • As-is-analysis of data management, data models
  • Determined functions of CRM: Processes, communication, data, access, sales control,
  • Determination KPIs and monitoring CRM
  • Creation of specifications for CRM system
  • Selection of possible CRM providers

© New Business Consulting GmbH