NPI, Sales Process Improvement

Following the success of the IFA Management review, we were asked to look at the Sales Process.  Originally, this was just intended to be a review of what went on in planning and carrying out a sales visit to an IFA.  Again, it didn't take long to agree there was more to it than that.  We assembled a team representing all the management and operational functions in the Sales Division, drawn from all over the country, and went off for a week's workshopping.  We built on the findings of the IFA Management review and recognised that:

•     the Sales Force (based in regional Offices and Branches around the country) should concentrate on IFAs that delivered, or could be

      developed to deliver quality, profitable business.  Bad IFAs identified by IFA Management should be dropped.

•     large accounts merited greater intensity of support than smaller ones

•     branch sales planning, and territory planning for individual sales staff had to reflect that, using MI from IFA Management

•     IFAs would not be impressed by a slick sales call or a flashy product, if it wasn't backed up by good back office support.  We looked 

      at what that meant in detail, and specified the back office process improvements required

•     sales would increase if we made the changes necessary.  We put a value on the revenue this would yield, for the business case.

Companies often have difficulty justifying investment in IT infrastructure, and that had been so for NPI.  This project was able, for the first time, to provide a financial justification for a new wide area network, since without it the linkage between sales and back office could not be delivered.

The team found it hard work, but enjoyed themselves, as the NPI internal newsletter demonstrates.

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