NEEDHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A joint study between Allego, the leading mobile video sales learning platform, and the Sales Management Association (SMA) demonstrated a sizable perception gap between sales reps and managers when it comes to the importance of sales training topics and practices, as well as their firms’ effectiveness delivering them. The survey revealed that managers consider value proposition communication a training topic of higher priority than do salespeople, who are more likely than their managers to prioritize presentation delivery and effectiveness. Managers believe that coaching (78 percent) and peer learning (73 percent) deliver the highest return on investment when it comes to sales enablement, while most reps believe the training offered by their organization falls short of expectations.
The Sales Management Association and Allego will present the findings of this study during a webinar tomorrow, April 4, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. ET. Register here to attend.
CLICK TO TWEET: Survey from @AllegoSoftware & @SMAssociation shows microlearning as a key sales training improvement priority
Sales Training Improvement Priorities
The study identified three key opportunities for sales organizations to improve sales skills development: micro-learning, salesperson practice, and sales enablement portals. These training practices were ranked as the most important by management, yet they were also considered to be the least effectively utilized.
“Most sales reps consider a greater portion of their overall learning to be self-directed, suggesting that managers may underestimate the degree to which salespeople seek out learning without managers’ involvement,” said Bob Kelly, founder and chairman of the Sales Management Association. “Since most sales organizations consider microlearning, best practice sharing, and sales enablement platforms to be valuable -- but ineffectively utilized -- the survey findings suggest there is ample room for technology tools that improve sales learning, foster better collaboration, and boost productivity.”
Incomplete Transition to Mobile Learning
Technology improvement needs include not only sales enablement platforms, but also mobile access to content. The study revealed that about one-third (32 percent) of respondents’ firms still have not implemented mobile access for salesperson training content, and only 10 percent have fully implemented mobile-enabled training content.
“Clearly sales professionals have different expectations and measurements for success depending on their positions,” said Mark Magnacca, president of Allego. “Many of the learning tools managers have traditionally relied upon aren’t having the assumed positive impact and there remains a need for more peer-based, just-in-time learning. Allego’s mobile video sales learning platform was designed specifically to address the needs of the modern sales rep, while simultaneously giving sales managers a way to confidently measure and sustain the effectiveness of their sales training initiatives.”
When considering the future of sales training, the survey found that age and experience play a role in a rep’s preferences for sales training development practices. For example, the study found that 20-something millennials would, on average, like to see 33 percent more time spent on role-playing with manager feedback and 12 percent less time spent on in-classroom training. As managers implement new training techniques, these age-based preferences will likely begin to play a larger role in the practices offered by sales organizations.
Additional findings from the study include:
- A disconnect exists between managers and reps concerning learning and development: Salespeople perceive a greater portion of their learning and development time to be self-directed than does management.
- Respondents’ ideal allocations of learning time suggest that firms wish to slightly reduce their reliance on online training (its ideal time allocation is 17 percent of all learning time), and slightly increase coaching interactions (from 47 percent currently to 53 percent).
- Only 16 percent of respondents rate gamification effective in their organizations.
- Both reps and managers agreed that self-directed training should be increased, while company-directed training should be decreased.
- Managers view opportunity qualification as most highest priority area for improvement.
This research represents summarized data from 260 respondents, comprised of 158 sales managers and 102 individual contributor salespeople. Management respondents provided data on their firms’ practices, while salespeople’s responses reflect their personal experience only, not that of others in their firm. Management respondents’ firms directly employ more than 83,000 sales professionals. Data was collected in January and February 2017.
Allego’s sales learning platform boosts sales performance by harnessing the power of mobile to transform enablement and training through video content sharing. With Allego’s mobile-first platform, organizations can create and curate the best content from the field and corporate office to better train and collaborate with distributed sales teams, without the time and expense typically associated with in-field coaching or on-site training. Users can easily access relevant, quality content, anytime, anywhere, allowing them to capture their best ideas, master their pitch and accelerate their performance. Tens of thousands of global users across a range of industries have adopted Allego to improve sales success. Explore further at www.allego.com.