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Workflow Mapping 101: How to Map your AE’s/Sales Rep’s Workflow

Workflow mapping is often item number one on our to-do list when we’re trying to increase adoption or prepare for implementations of Salesforce. Cultivating a deep understanding of how your sales team enters data, records results, and manages leads provides the foundational knowledge for setting up your unique instance of Salesforce.

You know your account executives and sales reps are intelligent and logical – and you know, if you can work to set up Salesforce properly, they would be happy to log in daily and base their workflow out of Salesforce. However, you can see that your sales team is not sold on Salesforce being a valuable part of their daily workflow yet. Mapping your sales team’s workflow can help give you the tools and understanding to increase buy-in and adoption. Plus, you and your implementation partner will then have the tools to design a CRM that meets your leadership’s data and forecasting needs and fits seamlessly into your sales team’s daily workflow. 

How to map your sales workflow starts with the right mindset.

The first step in mapping your sales reps’ workflow is setting the right mindset. You are working on this project because you are looking to learn more – not get confirmation about what you already assume is happening. By taking a beginner’s mindset, you can approach your questions with an open mind and discover the parts of your sales rep’s day causing the most stress and inefficiencies. 

Get ready to shadow and document.

Once you’re ready to show up to learn, it’s essential to assemble the right tools to capture the sales workflow process you’re investigating. We recommend using screen and audio recording tools to track clicks and view the screens your sales teams are using in each step. Have your sales rep walk you through how they record pre and post-contact information, follow-up plans, and other notes. Pay special attention to anything they are clicking on or repeatedly doing since these are the ideal tasks for automation. 

Be prepared to ask “why.”

As you get a better feel for your sales rep’s workflow, you can start asking “why” they do a particular step. Take the time to dig in in a non-judgemental way (remember your beginner’s mindset) to develop a deeper understanding of what is behind that part of the process. We like using the 5 Why’s as the foundation for this type of root cause analysis. When you and your sales rep hit a block in their workflow, pause and ask them why?

For example, your sales rep gets frustrated by how much time they spend sifting through their email inbox. When you ask why they note that they get so many emails from leads at different stages of your sales funnel that they have trouble keeping everyone’s next contact on track. Digging a little deeper with another why uncovers that they keep all open leads in an excel sheet because they have to manually update your CRM each time they send or receive a sales email. By taking the time to follow this frustration back to the root cause, you have uncovered a problem with a potential automatable solution – that really was not about their email inbox alone. 

How to use workflow mapping.

Once you’ve mapped your sales rep’s workflows and taken the time to understand common blocks and frustration, you can take this information to your Salesforce Implementation partner to help design your implementation. Starting with sales workflow mapping can also help increase adoption since you can identify ways that your Salesforce instance can help make your sales team’s process more efficient. 

We cover this and other topics in depth in our RevOps Brief. You can sign up here.