4 Changes Your Sales Team Needs to Do While Working With Engineers

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Sales Team + Engineers Needs to be a Match Made in Heaven 

A good sales team knows to evolve the way they work with engineering teams to close the targeted deals and generate follow-up business. Custom product companies have a unique opportunity to grow. You also face a unique challenge when it comes to the need for internal collaboration. 

The key to a successful engineering-to-order product is coordination between sales and engineering. When both teams understand the desired outcome and their role in achieving that outcome, it is easier to manage a project from start to finish. It all starts with your sales team.

The sales team is at the forefront, trying to convince potential customers that the company can meet their needs. However, their desire to close a deal can result in an imperfect customer experience if what they promise is beyond the capabilities of the development teams.

Because of this, it’s important that sales teams evolve the way they communicate and collaborate with the engineering teams. Rather than relying on sales engineers to do the middle work for them.

 

Listed below are four changes your sales team needs to do while working with engineers.

 

Take Your Time to Build The Best and Right Roadmap

Your sales team is likely a customer’s first interaction with your company. They set the tone for what a customer expects from their experience. This means that it is important to provide the customer with an accurate quote, not just an offer that will make the sale possible.

An accurate quote may take longer because due diligence is required to ensure that the proposed project is feasible for the amount offered. The best channel to achieve this is to actively participate in the proposed agreement. Discussing operations and engineering is a balancing act between speed and precision, but it improves the customer experience significantly.

Satisfied customers are important, but not only do they benefit from accurate offers. Your engineering team also benefits as they don’t have to deal with the additional work. This means they can focus on their existing projects without having to worry about fixing a sales problem. Losing less time can cut costs and have a positive impact on your bottom line.

 

Setting Expectations for Product Features and Requirements

It is important that your sales reps have a basic understanding of what your engineering team can do. This reduces the likelihood that they will over-promise when selling and helps them set realistic expectations with new customers. Setting these realistic expectations goes a long way towards building trust with customers. Someone who trusts your company is more likely to become a regular customer. 

Furthermore, setting realistic expectations is also very helpful when it comes to building the relationship between your sales teams and your engineering teams.

Members of the sales and engineering team can and should complement each other even though they are involved in different parts of the product development process and the customer journey.

Realistic expectations are important, but they are not always the definitive answer. Most of the time though, it comes down to asking the right questions, and a sales representative with technical know-how and understanding of what is feasible is best equipped for this. The engineer may be more willing to consider alternative options knowing that sales haven’t made promises for them. When expectations are set, everyone wins.

 

Don’t Work in Silos

Collaboration is important to the success of an on-demand engineering company. Sales and engineering teams don’t work in a vacuum, so it’s important that they don’t work in isolation from each other. When teams act in isolation, their work and the resulting corporate culture often reflect this. Or don’t consider the other when making decisions that can lead to a poor work environment, lost time, and lost profits.

Occasionally, larger companies hire product managers and sales engineers to solve this common silo problem. While the roles they play are invaluable, your company’s product will improve when the sales and engineering focus is shared by everyone in the product lifecycle,  not just a smaller team or product function.

Additionally, the sales team needs to understand how the engineering team works and who can help with questions.  This may be easier said than done when the two teams aren’t working in the same room, but it’s worth it. When you eliminate this sense of separation and isolation, you create an opening for positive interactions and collaboration.

 

Communicate on a Shared Platform Throughout the Sales Cycle

Getting teams out of their departmental void, establishing clarity about technical skills, and making sure quotations are correct are important steps in improving team alignment. It’s difficult to be successful in these steps when your collaboration and communication process is flawed.

However, there are several ways teams can communicate and collaborate. Organizations often use more than one service to communicate and find that this method does not work well. Mainly because of the intense nature of their operations. Using multiple services means there isn’t just one place. so that everyone can see all relevant information.

 

Final Thoughts

Using a shared-based platform such as KloudPLM helps your teams complete the above steps successfully and communicate efficiently. Better communication, coupled with team alignment, can lead to happier customers, happier employees, and better profits. Schedule a demo to learn more.


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