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What sales leaders need to know about AppOps

Chris Carrow

VP of Sales

October 27, 2020

As a sales leader, you and I rely on Salesforce, CPQ, and other sales enablement apps to improve processes and increase efficiencies throughout the sales cycle. These apps have become an indispensable part of the modern sales function, as organizations now spend on average close to $4,000 per sales rep on sales technology and reps use an average of six tools to do their work.

But as an end user of these apps, you may also be so focused on driving your team’s success that you don’t pay close attention to what it takes to manage and maintain them. It can be incredibly frustrating when seemingly simple changes take so long. Unfortunately, the everyday pains and challenges that are part of app management can cause friction between sales, sales or revenue operations, and IT. And anytime there’s friction, it’ll have an adverse effect on efficiency, productivity, and happiness.

To smooth your relationship with sales ops and IT without slowing down your sales process, you need effective application operations — or AppOps. Just as DevOps creates an automated life cycle between software development and IT operations, AppOps aims to simplify application deployment and management by aligning IT, Salesforce admins, and end users through a series of dedicated processes and useful tools.

Why app changes take so long

The sales process you follow today is unlikely to stay the same tomorrow. The changing demands of your business, your customers, and even the market at large require you to continually review, evolve, and adapt your sales team’s systems and processes.

For example, if your team began working remotely this year, maybe you had to suddenly introduce an advanced approvals process to keep deals moving. Or maybe your company launched a new product and you need a new SKU to include in new proposals. In other words, every change in your sales process will also require some kind of change, customization, or maintenance to Salesforce and your other sales apps.

But while the Salesforce user experience is becoming easier, Salesforce administration is becoming harder and no longer just about changing a few fields. More teams in your business are adding more apps and automating more revenue processes. Many apps are integrated with each other, potentially creating chaos if something were to be misconfigured and making it nearly impossible to keep track of customizations, or who’s changing what and when.

It’s possible you’ve experienced situations like these:

  • A discount rule is inadvertently broken and causes your quotes to miscalculate
  • A miskeyed field accidentally reassigns sales accounts to an inactive user
  • A mistake in configuration doesn’t get noticed right away, creating a ripple effect of other problems

In the worst case scenario, these errors can lead to very uncomfortable conversations with customers about why you cannot honor a closed sale. Your customer certainly doesn’t want to hear a required product was missing from the bundle, and they’ll have to pay because of the mistake. However, big or small, mistakes in configuration erode rep’s trust in the systems designed to make their lives easier and create more tension between sales and the operations and IT teams who maintain those systems.

Lack of tools furthers friction

Without continuous monitoring and optimization to make sure each app adheres to corporate best practices and IT governance, let alone doesn’t break other apps or systems, app management turns into a house of cards that can easily topple and negatively impact revenue. In fact, it’s those exact situations that your Salesforce team actively tries to prevent.

Because Salesforce admins are responsible for managing customizations, changes, and app updates, they can unintentionally become a bottleneck. In many cases, it can take weeks — even months — to roll out new releases following best practices for change management and release governance, and many admins don’t have the tools they need to do it effectively or efficiently.

Without the right tools, admins and ops teams face an increased risk of data errors and have to spend inordinate amounts of time on manual processes and rework. All of this contributes to a slower speed of change and a slower response to market demand that can hurt revenue and even your business reputation.

AppOps unifies sales, ops, and admins

As champions (and often purchasers) of sales enablement apps, sales leaders like you and I just need to know that the apps and any customizations you request are going to work at the end of the day. Having fast, reliable app operations in place is the key to making your investment worthwhile.

AppOps drives efficient and accelerated administration of Salesforce apps by enabling more people, including admins and non-developers, to use a low-code approach to development and configuration. It also prevents the slowdowns that get in the way of your sales process by automating what would otherwise be time-consuming and error-prone tasks, such as reference data deployments between Salesforce organizations, version control, and regression testing to find and fix bugs before they’re introduced in production.

AppOps essentially removes the bottlenecks in application development so your Salesforce admins and operators can configure, test, and release apps faster, more reliably, and with less interruption.

The benefits of AppOps to sales leaders are many, including:

  • Faster changes and greater responsiveness to market and customer demands
  • Much higher uptime for sales reps since changes are more thoroughly tested
  • Minimized interruption to daily activities because reps can be trained on a big change in advance
  • Better collaboration with Salesforce admins to leverage new features and improve sales processes
  • Higher return on sales app investments

Meet the sales demands of today and tomorrow with AppOps

Salesforce is an essential tool for the modern enterprise that sales teams depend on today. But its out-of-the-box functionality has to be adapted to meet the individual needs of your business. When changes take too long, you and your sales team can get frustrated and end up at greater risk of losing out to the competition.

With next-generation AppOps solutions from Prodly, your Salesforce admins and sales ops teams can respond far more effectively to sudden shifts in strategy, evolving customer demands, and changes to your sales processes without sacrificing quality or jeopardizing your existing and proven workflows.

If faster response time and better alignment between sales and operations teams sounds good, let’s chat.

Or better yet help your Salesforce team out by scheduling a free personalized demo today.