Sales Operations Roles and Responsibilities
Sales Operations is a division within a business that is charged with ensuring the efficiency and effectiveness of a company’s sales.
Sales Operations supports a company’s sales team by creating, evaluating, and optimising data sets and sales applications.
Employees working in Sales Operations most often manage sales administration, oversee business analytics and attainment planning, and direct sales force enablement. More and more companies have begun to adopt Sales Operations strategies to remain competitive.
The benefits of implementing Sales Operations in business strategies include:
- An increase in sales effectiveness
- Ability to maintain order during times of rapid company growth
- A means to process and evaluate data effectively
- A sustainable infrastructure in which sales can grow
Working in Business Sales Operations
Depending on the company, a variety of jobs falls under the category of Sales Operations.
Typical job titles that fall under Sales Operations include Sales Operatives, Sales Operation Managers, Business Development Manager and Head of Sales Operations.
A Sales Operative is responsible for collecting and evaluating sales information and using that information to maximise sales productivity. Sales Operations Managers or Business Sales Managers report and analyse the data gathered by Sales Operatives to the Head of Sales who oversees the entire department and works to ensure the success of a product. As you can tell, each of these positions must work together to maximise sales effectiveness.
Responsibilities in Sales Operations
The main responsibilities in sales operations are:
- Data Management: Sales Operations employees manage and evaluate data to determine the effectiveness of a product or campaign.
- Contract Proposals: Sales Operations creates contracts that satisfy both company and customer needs.
- Application Management: To produce data for the sales team, sales operation employees must oversee the use of various applications and platforms.
- Sales Forecasting: By recognising past trends, Sales Operations allows employees to forecast future sales.
- Territory Definition: Sales Operations must outline and define various sales territories.
- Training: To have a successful sales team, the responsibility of training new and current employees often falls under the responsibilities of Sales Operations.
- Evaluation and Implementation: By evaluating data, Sales Operations employees ensure the success of a product or implement new sales plan if the evaluation yields unsatisfactory results.
- Performance Management: High performances are often rewarded in Sales Operations, and poor performances must be acknowledged and resolved.
- Sales Strategy: Sales Operations professionals often set strategy and future goals for a sales team.
- Sales Team Organisation: An efficient sales team is vital to the success of Sales Operations.
Key Skills for Sales Operations
The top 10 skills needed to work in sales operations are:
- Negotiation: Employees in Sales Operations should be able to negotiate with customers calmly and other companies to maximise customer relations and product performance.
- Communication: Since the success of Sales Operations relies on a large number of people, it requires that employees communicate clearly and often.
- Analytical Analysis: Because employees must analyse large sets of data, employees must have analytical analysis skills.
- Dedication: Jobs in sales are often time-consuming, meaning that employees must be dedicated to their profession.
- Educational Background: To get a job in Sales Operations, most professionals need a bachelor’s degree at minimum.
- Trend Analysis: High performing sales teams require employees that recognise trends and foreshadow trends in the future.
- Leadership: Since Sales Operations employees work both individually and in a team, it necessitates that each maintains some leadership capabilities.
- Planning Abilities: An employee must be able to plan strategies and future operation goals effectively.
- Motivation: The stress of sales on employees requires that Sales Operations employees maintain office morale through motivation and reward.
- Multitasking: The diverse nature of Sales Operations responsibilities means that employees should have a wide variety of skills that can be employed simultaneously.
Sales Work Environment in Operations
Sales Operations staff can typically expect to be hired for a full-time position with occasional over time. While primarily working regular hours, the Sales Operations environment is fast paced, and it requires an employee that can multitask. Sales Operations staff are expected to work within a team, which requires daily communication and exchanges between various staff members.
Sales Operations Salary
Salaries for Sales Operations tends to vary depending on levels of experience, position, and company size. While Sales Operatives’ salaries average £30,000 per annum, the salaries for Sales Operations Managers typically range from £60,000 to £100,000 per annum. Heads of Sales can expect to earn around £150,000+.
Sales and Business Career Path
Those hoping to begin their career in Sales Operations most often begin as a Sales Operative. After gaining experience and success in the field, Sales Operatives have the chance to become Sales Operations Managers. Some managers continue to become the Head of the business in Sales.
How to Get a Operations Job in Sales
Employers typically look for the following when hiring new employees:
- Business Experience: A wide variety of experience in sales is highly valued on the job market.
- Technology Literacy: Many employers expect hires to have a broad understanding of various sales platforms and data applications.
- Teamwork: Employees must be able to work well within a team and communicate effectively.
As global markets continue to expand, jobs within Sales Operations are becoming more and more lucrative. Whether you are new to the field or a seasoned professional, Sales Operations offers opportunities for professional growth.