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Here’s what you need to do to improve your sales workflow

When Staples surveyed workers and managers in 2013, 70% said they were more productive at that time than five years earlier.

So what is it that Staples and other productive, efficient companies are doing to help their salespeople work faster and close more deals?

Here at PandaDoc, we work with many types of sales teams all over the world and help them maximize their efficiency. Let’s look at some of the areas where the sales workflow typically gets clogged and what you can do to help your team keep moving.

1. Customizing documents

You probably already know how essential creating custom proposals is to delivering personalized, meaningful experiences to your buyers. There’s no way around it. If you want buyers to respond, you need to show them how you’re invested in their individual needs.

However, building custom proposals that require different types of content, pricing, and contact information can take hours and several different programs, applications, and back-and-forth editing within the team. Help your reps produce custom proposals faster using document creation software like ours. With features like templates, a content library and CRM integration, proposals can be customized in minutes, helping improve your workflow.

2. Waiting on marketing to send new content

As your marketing team studies buyers and comes up with strategies to engage them through compelling content, it makes sense that your sales team would want to collaborate with them as efficiently as possible. That means no long gaps in communication and no waiting for marketing to send you the most recent version of the digital brochure for your team to distribute.

Use a platform on which both marketing and sales can create and upload content for better collaboration. Sales should be able to directly pull content they need from what marketing creates. Additionally, marketing could provide more informed recommendations when seeing the sales team’s tactics.

3. Waiting for approval

Sometimes documents sent internally for approval can sit in inboxes for days waiting for approval. They’re often overlooked or deferred in favor of something requiring more immediate attention. Also, with so many sales in the pipeline, it’s hard to keep track of which sale is waiting on what. You don’t want anything to fall through the cracks.

Easily improve your workflow by simplifying the approvals process. Use a document management service that allows your reps to alert managers when documents need approval and what specifically needs to be reviewed.

4. Waiting for buyers to sign or pay

One of the most tedious steps in the sales process is waiting for buyers to sign or pay. At this point, reps are only one step away from closing the deal. Eliminate waiting by making signing and paying as easy as possible for the buyer. Allow buyers to sign and pay electronically, right within the document.

Highlight areas where buyers should sign and indicate what information is required (i.e. initials, printed name, or full signature). Embed a credit card form right into the document so buyers don’t have any extra steps to take to complete a payment.

Streamlining complicated processes for buyers will help improve your workflow. But, streamlining your internal sales content creation and approval processes will enhance collaboration and improve your workflow as well. If you’re looking to increase productivity, pay attention to the areas where workflow seems to stop. Then think about the tools your team could use to get things flowing smoothly again.

What are some trouble areas where workflow stops in your organization? What could you do differently?

Mikita Mikado

Mikita Mikado CEO & Co-founder of PandaDoc

Mikita is a software entrepreneur, CEO, and Co-founder of PandaDoc. When he is not working, you can find him catching waves on a surfboard or hanging out with his two daughters.

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