IBM - Best Use of Technology in Sales



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Company: IBM, Armonk, NY
Company Description: IBM is a values-based enterprise of individuals who create & apply technology to make the world work better. Today, more than 377,000 IBM employees around the world invent and integrate hardware, software and services to help forward-thinking enterprises, institutions and people succeed on a smarter planet.
Nomination Category: Sales Awards Achievement Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best Use of Technology in Sales

Nomination Title: IBM Implementation of Sales Tracker - a comprehensive view of seller achievement and potential earnings

Tell the story about how your organization used technology to improve sales operations, drive sales growth, and/or improve customer satisfaction since the beginning of July 2015 (up to 650 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes: TEXT REDACTED FOR PUBLICATION

In a survey at the end of 2014, IBM sellers put up a cry for help. Viewing essential incentives and commission data was fragmented, cumbersome and complex. Sellers and sales managers alike were desperate for a quick, easy and comprehensive view of their achievement and potential earnings.

Thus, the Sales Tracker concept was born as a personalized “dashboard” to show a seller’s earnings, achievement, accelerators, and even future attainment simulations. Inputs from multiple sources were required. Basic information, including the seller’s plan, quota, and territory were derived from the seller’s Incentive Plan Letter. Earnings data was sourced from the user’s Incentive Statements, achievement was pulled from Cognos Achievement Reports, and opportunities in the pipeline necessary to model future achievement were extracted from SalesConnect. Sellers estimated that prior to SalesTracker, accessing multiple systems and pulling this data together in one combined view was a manual process that took 1 to 2 hours on average.

Sellers advising on the design were not only excited about the potential time savings, but other benefits of such a tool. For example, having a quick view of performance against a target was very motivating. Also, having a line of sight to incentives would help them understand IBM’s focus and prioritize opportunities. And, being able to see the potential impact of a deal before payment can help ward off payment issues if something is amiss (i.e. territory assignment).

A global roll out of the Sales Tracker application web version started in July 2015. While sellers were thrilled with the capabilities of the tool, they wanted to be able to access it on their mobile devices as well. From the beginning, SalesTracker had been developed using an agile approach, so a complimentary iOS version was a natural progression of the work.

On October 15, 2015, the mobile iOS version of IBM SalesTracker was announced to our sales organization, optimized for mobile devices and providing the same functionality as the web release with small exceptions.

The feedback on the app has been extremely positive…

“I wanted to share my appreciation for the SalesTracker. I have worked in Fortune 100 Sales organization in Asia outside IBM as well and this is by far the best application I have ever seen that brings employee achievements to their fingertips. This certainly deserves a big thank you. Keep up the great work.”
IBM Software Sales Manager, Pakistan

“This tool is the best sales tool I have seen during my time at IBM. FMS has been a maddening tool to work with - you have tamed the beast. Bravo, and thank you. Well done!”
IBM S&D Client Exec, North America

“This is a great dashboard, thanks for providing! Nice to finally have a visual of our work.”
ITS Client Rep, North America

“I really love the reports in SalesTracker and they are the best I've seen to show performance. This is a really cool report, and gives me all I need. No more FMS reports for me."
Software Client Lead, United Kingdom

There have been more than 16,000 downloads of the iOS version of IBM SalesTracker to date, and true to the agile principle, we will continue to improve and build onto the existing capabilities of the tool, allowing it to be the one stop for all earnings and achievement data needed by our sales team.