To read part 1, click here.
Sales operations commonly is one of the next functions businesses will
automate after doing so to billing. Unfortunately, it also can be a difficult
operation for which to quantify the benefit of automation.
Typically, there are a number of key drivers that push a decision maker to
invest in sales-force automation:
Smaller customers or quotes are falling through the cracks; A desire to
capture information on sales leads; so that if a salesperson leaves the
company, all their sales pipeline information does not leave with them; There
are enough salespeople such that even a small increase in sales productivity
represents a cost savings; Sales operations are mechanical enough (for
example: a high-volume lead calling shop) that automation will result in a
clear operational cost savings; Salespeople are complaining about the
existing sales man... (more)
Historically, when we take something complex and make it simple, we open up
all sorts of opportunities for value. Think about the changes that happened
once the Web made it simpler to buy goods and services. Consider how mobile
phones and text messaging have empowered us to communicate faster and more
frequently. And consider what the word processor, e-mail and spreadsheets
have done for individual productivity.
Cloud computing is a lot like each of these three revolutions in that it
greatly reduces the complexity of otherwise technically challenging issues.
In so doing, it empo... (more)
Historically, when an organization needed software, it had two basic paths:
buy something already built and use it as-is or build from scratch.
Both paths have been fraught with peril, as witnessed by the 2009 CHAOS
report that showed only 32 percent of projects being successfully completed
and nearly one in four projects cancelled before completion.
The problem with deploying pre-built software is that it is rigid and
inflexible. Software builders didn't anticipate the processes your
organization developed to meet customer needs and be successful. What's more,
they had no plans to... (more)
Open Source at Cloud Expo
For small and mid-sized businesses, there often is a question about whether
to stick with tried and true software providers such as Microsoft for your
servers, e-mail and business applications or consider adoption of open-source
products such as Linux.
I've witnessed in this region some hesitation toward adoption of open-source
products. I believe it's important to be able to make a rational evaluation
of the two paths so you can make the best decisions.
First, what is open-source software?
Taken strictly, the term refers to software licensed under a spe... (more)
Mark Twain was credited with saying, "I didn't have time to write a short
letter, so I wrote a long one instead."
People figured out long ago that a letter with fewer words, though more
powerful, was more difficult to write. It seems technologists only now are
beginning to learn that lesson.
Just a few years ago, technology was better when it had more features.
Technology with fewer features was more primitive - think of digital versus
analog. Whether you were in the auto industry or you were building software,
it was your job to add features. If you were a marketer, it was your jo... (more)