According to one article in Forbes magazine, on average a large enterprise may use as many as 500 applications. It’s no surprise that, as the number of systems increases, so does the number of silos within an organization – making it difficult to complete tasks, access data, or find other critical work information.
This can be particularly true for sales teams that may be missing quotas. In order to improve sales performance, rather than adding complexity (in the form of apps) to the mix, CIOs and VPs must create better workflows that make it easier to accept leads, find customer information, and close deals.
Question: But how?
One answer: Micro apps.
A micro app is a small, task-specific application with highly targeted functionality. The goal of a micro app is to deliver a simple workflow that enables employees to accomplish single-purpose activities more quickly than with many mobile, Web, or desktop apps, which are often difficult to use and loaded with far too many features nobody uses. Micro apps help sales teams improve their sales in these three ways.
Micro apps consolidate information from various systems.
Sales information, such as customer purchases and service calls, is often stored across five or six different systems – all of which require reps to complete multiple logins to find the information they need. It’s no wonder then that, according to one sales blogger, only 33 percent of a sales rep’s time is spent actively selling.
Micro apps can connect to all of these systems and deliver a consolidated view of the information to any device, intranet, or messenger. Prior to a salesperson jumping on the phone with a customer, a micro app will deliver a 360-degree customer view with information from systems of record like Salesforce, SAP, or Zendesk.
With key information such as service tickets, product updates, and purchase history right at their fingertips, sales reps no longer need to pause a call with a customer to search for the information they need to close a sale. And, when issues arise, sales reps are proactively notified so they can jump in and help the customer.
Micro apps simplify workflows across the sales organization.
Remember when reps complained about the time they spent doing paperwork instead of selling? Well, consider the new world of tech. In addition to losing time searching for information, according to the same blogger, sales reps spend far too much of their time – up to 20 percent of their day – completing simple reporting, administrative, or CRM-related tasks.
Micro apps help sales reps prepare and complete all activities needed to complete a sale. Specifically, they break workflows down into the simplest tasks possible that can easily be reviewed and completed by any appropriate employees, regardless of department. For example, micro apps will proactively notify a finance manager when a new deal is signed and needs to be approved or they will assign new opportunities and leads to the correct salesperson – and allow that person to immediately accept and contact the lead. Micro apps help reduce the time sales teams spend on busywork and let them focus on what they do best – closing business.
Micro apps combine digital technologies to provide personalized experiences everywhere.
Micro apps combine predictive analytics, push notifications, and machine learning to understand the needs of individual employees and provide personalized experiences. In other words, a salesperson might receive a notification for any of the following:
Micro apps proactively deliver information and updates that have proven helpful for employees wherever they are, while also giving them the ability to fine-tune information so they don’t get overloaded with information. This ensures reps are notified only about what is most important – allowing them to make more informed decisions and complete their work faster.
With the increasing number of tools available, systems that were meant to help sales teams do their jobs well end up feeling like a burden. But, without them, salespeople run the risk of being unable to meet their quotas. By providing sales reps with micro apps, management teams will equip reps with tools that empower them to perform better, make smarter decisions, and close deals faster.
At least that’s the promise.
Natalie Lambert is a former Forrester analyst who is now VP of marketing at Sapho.