Is Sales Forecasting An Art Or Science?

3216 Words13 Pages
Improving Sales Forecasting Accuracy Proven strategies designed to increase forecasting accuracy across the organization By Javier Jimenez, Chief Revenue Officer, Intraway Corporation 1.0 Sales Forecasting – Art or Science Sales Forecasting: (n) the process in which a company predicts what variation of sales it will have in the distant future. Did you ever wonder about how companies forecast their sales? Is Sales Forecasting an Art or a Science? These are all good questions and if there were just one aspect of strategic sales planning that all companies would love to improve on, it would probably be more accurate sales forecasts. For some, sales forecasting is a little guesswork mixed in with some black magic, a gut feel and a lot of…show more content…
There are as followed: 1. A clearly defined, well-documented, and consistently applied sales process with explicit milestones or gates between each of the stages 2. Clearly defined and consistently applied progressive opportunity qualification criteria that are regularly revisited throughout the sales process 3. A CRM system that is configured to capture, report, and analyze the key facts and figures that affect sales forecast accuracy 4. A environment in which sales people see themselves as personally accountable for fully understanding their sales opportunities and for delivering accurate sales forecasts There’s a common thread running through these four key foundations: clear definitions, consistently applied, supported by effective systems, and personal accountability. Without these in place, it’s hard to imagine how any organization could generate consistently accurate sales forecasts. Further analysis indicates the following processes / criteria / training need to be incorporated as part of the sales process: 1. Sales Process (Sales 101) 2. Qualification criteria 3. Documented list of approvers and recommenders along with an action plan for coverage 4. Budget determination 5. Contract / P.O. process and timing 6. Compelling event for the close 7. Probability assignment 8. Commit criteria 4.0 Barriers to Effective Sales Forecasting The organization also needs to consider that there are

More about Is Sales Forecasting An Art Or Science?

Open Document