In this part of our Sales Performance Management interview series, Mario Pufahl, CSO and sales expert at ec4u, talks about cloud computing and why a sales platform in the cloud is a great option for companies.
„You need to look at the cloud from IT perspective as well as a specialist’s point of view.“
The transcript of the interview part „Cloud part 1“:
What kind of benefits come with a cloud-based sales platform?
A cloud-based sales platform has various advantages. You should not only look at the cloud from the IT perspective but also from a specialist’s point of view. As a company, you need to ask yourself what benefits come with it. In many industries, the market is changing rapidly. The customer’s needs are changing faster and new communication channels appear constantly, WhatsApp. Three to five years ago, no company would have regarded WhatsApp or Twitter as a communication channel.
But the status quo is constantly changing, so that companies must react and take the customer’s point of view. If a customer prefers the channel WhatsApp or Twitter, then you can’t just ignore this channel.
Deutsche Bahn and German Telekom are a good example for the right approach to these changes. First, they had difficulties using Twitter but they adapted. “Telekom hilft” (Telekom helps) is an accepted portal for example. In sales, you need to ask yourself the following question:
How can you keep pace with modern developments and your customer’s requirements?
Converting to a cloud platform is the right answer.
Big manufacturers of CRM, BI and Marketing Automation platforms count on cloud computing. Providers like Microsoft and SAP still offer both (cloud and on-premise-solutions). However, new functionalities that are relevant for sales are first made available via cloud. Hence, if you do not have access to the cloud, you will have to wait for new functionalities (sometimes up to six months). The “Go-to-Market” becomes significantly worse if you keep going the old route because you cannot act fast on the market.
Another point is, if you operate a solution in your own company and you have installed the software there (“On-Premise-Solution”), then the conversion to a new version is mostly time-consuming.
IT-employees must plan the version, then implement it and, finally, distribute it on the individual computers. This process can take weeks if not months. I know companies who took years for end users and sales representatives to get the right functionalities. This time span is way too big (even for old standards). If you decide on a cloud solution, however, the process is much faster and you always have the latest version. You can even switch on new functionalities and use them at once. It’s amazing and the main reason why you should choose cloud computing.