How are you measuring the performance of your assigned account telephone sales reps?

I am often asked how to structure and reward a team of dedicated sales reps.  Specifically, reps that are assigned a number of accounts and have the responsibility of retain, penetrating and growth those relationships.

One of the first questions I get is how many accounts should be assigned to such reps?   The answer depends on the nature of the assigned account.   If it is large, national account with many locations then fewer will be assigned.  If the group of assigned accounts is a basket of A,B,C producers with varying levels of work involved, then 100-300 accounts in a territory is normal.  I have seen reps with just one national account and I have seen reps with 500.   How many depends on what you are assigning.

Given most assigned B2B reps should have the ability to negotiate/quote price within a pre-established range, I would use net margin generated to evaluate such reps.   I would also allocate to their individual cost centers costs for all the marketing materials (catalogs, mailings, etc.) and other variable costs that are “spent” on their accounts. 

Over the course of a month, quarter or year I would evaluate their performance on the following:

  • Sales growth versus prior period, overall company and control territory.
  • Net margin growth versus prior period, overall company and control territory.
  • Returns
  • Net contact additions
  • Inactive (>6 months) accounts/sites.
  • Orders, average order value, lines per order, units per order.
  • Time spent on calls versus time paid. (If they are not talking, they are not selling.)
  • Growth in number of accounts buying from multiple product categories.
  • Call quality (evaluated through monitoring)
  • Organizational contribution (if they are growing their territory but creating havoc everywhere else, that is not what you want.)

Of course, their overall performance is judged on the balance of all these items and no single item.   An effective commission plan rewards them for a balanced achievement on these measures.   I also prefer when payouts grow as contribution grows.  i.e. “The more you sell, the more you earn”.   I also reward the rep for everything the customer buys, no matter how he buys it.   Ideally, that encourages them to understand and use inbound/online customer service and mailings to their best advantage, saving their time for only those tasks that a sales rep can do.

How does your company evaluate your assigned account sales representatives?   Email me if you have additional ideas or questions.  tjukes@b2bdmi.com

I am often asked how to structure and reward a team of dedicated sales reps.  Specifically, reps that are assigned a number of accounts and have the responsibility of retain, penetrating and growth those relationships.

One of the first questions I get is how many accounts should be assigned to such reps?   The answer depends on the nature of the assigned account.   If it is large, national account with many locations then fewer will be assigned.  If the group of assigned accounts is a basket of A,B,C producers with varying levels of work involved, then 100-300 accounts in a territory is normal.  I have seen reps with just one national account and I have seen reps with 500.   How many depends on what you are assigning.

Given most assigned B2B reps should have the ability to negotiate/quote price within a pre-established range, I would use net margin generated to evaluate such reps.   I would also allocate to their individual cost centers costs for all the marketing materials (catalogs, mailings, etc.) and other variable costs that are “spent” on their accounts. 

Over the course of a month, quarter or year I would evaluate their performance on the following:

  • Sales growth versus prior period, overall company and control territory.
  • Net margin growth versus prior period, overall company and control territory.
  • Returns
  • Net contact additions
  • Inactive (>6 months) accounts/sites.
  • Orders, average order value, lines per order, units per order.
  • Time spent on calls versus time paid. (If they are not talking, they are not selling.)
  • Growth in number of accounts buying from multiple product categories.
  • Call quality (evaluated through monitoring)
  • Organizational contribution (if they are growing their territory but creating havoc everywhere else, that is not what you want.)

Of course, their overall performance is judged on the balance of all these items and no single item.   An effective commission plan rewards them for a balanced achievement on these measures.   I also prefer when payouts grow as contribution grows.  i.e. “The more you sell, the more you earn”.   I also reward the rep for everything the customer buys, no matter how he buys it.   Ideally, that encourages them to understand and use inbound/online customer service and mailings to their best advantage, saving their time for only those tasks that a sales rep can do.

How does your company evaluate your assigned account sales representatives?   Email me if you have additional ideas or questions.  tjukes@b2bdmi.com

Terence Jukes is president of B2B Direct Marketing Intelligence LLC, a strategic B2B direct marketing consultancy based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., that services B2B catalog company clients in the U.S., Canada, France, the U.K. and Germany. You can reach him at tjukes @ b2bdmi.com or (954) 383-5221

Comments or questions are welcome.

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