So you want to choose a platform for customer relationship management (CRM) -- one that will help automate repetitive sales tasks and ultimately boost sales and customer satisfaction. The question is, "Where do you begin?" Fortunately, Gartner's recently released 'Magic Quadrant for Sales Force Automation' (SFA) offers a wealth of comparative data that can help you narrow down your choices, especially with so many newcomers to the market.
First, let's understand Gartner's definition of Sales Force Automation. Gartner lumps into the SFA category applications that support the automation of sales activities, processes, and administrative responsibilities for business-to-business (B2B) sales professionals. As Gartner characterizes it, core functionalities of sales force automation include account management, as well as contact management and opportunity management.
Gartner also lists add-on capabilities that focus on improving the effectiveness of salespeople. These include sales configuration, guided selling, proposal generation, and content management, plus sales performance management support, including incentive compensation, quota management, sales coaching, and territory management.
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