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How Do You Get Sales Reps to Update Salesforce Consistently?

3 min readMarch 13, 2015

I’ll admit right off the bat that the title of this article is a trick question. Because the majority of reps are not going to update their CRMs consistently. Why? Because reps view updating Salesforce as burdensome. As Andreesen Horowitz’s Scott Weiss rightly pointed out in a recent article, “The words ‘I need you to update Salesforce’ are the equivalent of saying to a teenager, ‘Make up your bed’ or ‘Clean up your room.’ It’s always met with an attitude.”

What data are reps expected to update? It can be a long list including logging emails, calls, dispositions, call duration, lead status, call outcomes, call ratings and more. Trying to get reps to update this data in Salesforce manually can—understandably—be like pulling teeth.

CRM inside sales Yet, nearly all companies understand the importance of accurate data. According to data from Experian, 91% of U.S. companies believe that their bottom line is affected by having inaccurate and incomplete data. So the question remains: how can managers get accurate, up-to-the-moment data in Salesforce without saddling reps with the tedious task of manually updating lead records?

The answer is to use tools that automate these vital but time-consuming activities.

What are Sales Automation Tools?

Salesforce is nearly always a great investment for sales teams (I remember days of logging prospect data on post-it notes). But reps need additional tools that can bridge the gap between sales activities and CRM. Sales automation tools help reps spend more time selling by automating key sales processes. Such tools can radically reduce or fully eliminate the time that reps spend entering data in Salesforce (and here’s a larger list of sales activities we believe should be automated).

Making Salesforce Work With Reps’ Workflow

According to Scott Weiss, “For years, salespeople have been clamoring for a product that helps them with their actual workflow: communicating with prospects, tracking, and closing deals.”

One of our missions with Revenue.io was to make Salesforce benefit  reps and managers equally. In addition to providing reps with tools that help them connect with more leads and close more deals, we help reps save time by automating data capture in Salesforce. Revenue.io can automatically log call disposition, call times, call duration metrics, email attempts, call attempts and more. By updating this lead and contact data in Salesforce automatically, reps can spend more time doing what they really want to do: selling.

Better Data Powers Smarter Coaching

Revenue.io doesn’t only benefit sales reps. Managers also gain the advantage of clean, real-time data delivered to call metrics dashboards. More accurate data enables managers to make smarter revenue predictions. It also empowers managers to draw a straight line between reps’ activities and outcomes. Managers can set accurate benchmarks based on how many dials and emails it takes to create opportunities and drive revenue. And since Revenue.io logs call recordings in Salesforce (in addition to call metrics), managers can stay on top of reps’ pitches, intervening early and often when reps need additional guidance.

If you’ve already invested in Salesforce, think of it as the foundation of your sales technology stack. Look for tools that integrate well with Salesforce in order to help reps actually close more deals. But whatever you do, don’t expect reps to consistently log prospect data in Salesforce themselves. If you want accurate data then you need a tool like Revenue.io which can capture crucial data without interfering with reps’ workflow.

Want some help choosing the best sales automation tools for your sales technology stack? Check out our free Sales Acceleration Buyer’s Guide.