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How PreSkale build visibility into PreSales process and saved our 6 figure deals?
Mark, former VP of Solutions Engineer at Nauto, is a thought leader with close to a decade experience in technical sales and solution engineering. At Nauto, He was entrusted with optimizing technical Sales processes and strengthening Sales Enablement initiatives to drive sales growth.
He has collaborated with us to share his experience on how he was able to resolve his team’s challenges with PreSkale.
The team had a process which involved multiple tools and it involved a lot of duplication and replication of files and project items. He and his management wanted more visibility and clarity on,
1) Team’s workflow and time-spent
2) Active opportunity and meeting outcomes
3) Opportunity velocity across stages
4) Centralized Library of opportunities and activities
5) Optimize resource allocation
They evaluated many PreSales products and finally, chose to go ahead with PreSkale. Two reasons being a great solution for managing their PreSales team and the team behind the PreSkale product.
He also highlights that the PreSkale team understands the major pain-points faced by the PreSales team and solves them within the product. PreSkale was one solution that was truly holistically solves the PreSales problem.
With PreSkale, Mark was able to set up a better PreSales process and nurture workflows that promoted success for his entire team with complete visibility.
Defining the PreSales Process
Mark and his team were tied to ad-hoc requests from prospects and abrupt tasks that got piled up with time. There was no mere accountability or standard procedure that weighed the PreSales team down into a simple and manageable process.
That’s when Mark decided to install a process in place to make sure that accountability is sewed inside every minute activity taking place in the PreSales process. Mark outlined two categories of work-items — external and internal.
External being everything to do with the prospect, preparing RFPs, demo calls, POCs, technical support, QnA, amongst others. And internal work-items referring to team meetings, one-on-ones, pipeline reviews, sales engagement, and similarly others.
This infrastructure became a standard schema for every opportunity. Mark used PreSkale’s dedicated Workspace to take care of items inside both workflows:
Calendar Management — Mark encouraged his team to manage their schedule in one Calendar powered by PreSkale’s Calendar Intelligence. Whether that be internal, external meetings, or personal time blocks. PreSkale automatically tagged every meeting to a particular opportunity and outcomes. So everyone on the team knew how much time and effort was spent on an opportunity or outcome.
Workbook to manage action items and notes — Mark highlighted the usefulness of having all tasks and notes in one place, so one can refer to such material to prepare for external meetings minutes before the call. PreSkale’s Workbook is a centralized location where you can find all your tasks, notes, and meeting schedule (for the day) without switching a tab or clicking anywhere. PreSkale understands the need for a preparatory session before going live with the prospects.
Standardized PreSales engagement with Checklist — helped Mark streamline and standardize their operating procedures. PreSkale has a built-in Checklist so that every team member knows what to do for every opportunity inside the pipeline. The priority was set using the Checklist. Mark knew that there won’t be ad-hoc meetings or calls behind his back.
Manager pipeline for technical pipeline discussions — after using PreSkale’s Presentation View, Mark had complete visibility on the PreSales teams technical approach to their deals, and he could also quickly switch to a different User and see the progress on the deals that they're working on, and was able to gain better clarity, identify points of conflict, and resolve them.
Improved visibility and promoted data-driven approach
Earlier, Mark and his team had to update multiple tools — SF, Google Sheets, Confluence, JIRA, Asana, and Monday. And then, they had to collate and assimilate several data points from these different tools to stay updated. The team had to keep up with these touchpoints to know about just one deal.
1) By defining his PreSales process, Mark had visibility into the team’s calendar and their availability, deliverables, deals, and deal blockers. PreSales users were able to mark out their evaluation plan, which includes documenting,
a) Checklist: Items that help keep track of completed and pending deliverables
b) Solutions: Features that address the requirements of the prospects
c) Product gaps: Missing feature elements in your product that hinder the user from reaching the evaluation objective.
d) Collaborators: Include crucial team members who are responsible for different activities that have to be completed during the life of the PreSales cycle. This gave the team 100% transparency in every little deal detail.
2) PreSkale acted as a single truth source for all completed technical activities. It also helped the team with prioritization and managing the team’s workload.
3) No more context switching. PreSales team members could add their assisting teammates as collaborators to their deals and work as one unit in complete success items and close deals. Every stakeholder involved knew what was happening in the deal.
4) As a manager, Mark could proactively identify red flags, connect with the PreSales owner and work together to get the items sorted. This also helped him to accurately predict and close the gap between sales forecasts and closures.
Evaluation Plan Saves the Day!
Mark cited an example of how such transparency helped the team close a 6 figure deal. One of the PreSales handling this deal had to take an absence for six months.
As this deal was completely managed within PreSkale, Mark could quickly acclimate to this unexpected situation. He had visibility into the completed, pending, and upcoming action items and activities.
He immediately identified a red flag in the promised deliverables. Mark sprung into action, quickly connected with the management and the stakeholders, and set the right expectations with the prospects.
Mark cited that identifying red flags at such an early stage and resolving them helped them from potentially causing churn and saved the deal. Providing such great experiences to customers increased trust and customer loyalty.
About the PreSkale Team
He particularly pointed that the PreSkale team had been super-receptive of all the feedback he had given over the months. He noted that the PreSkale team has been pro-active in informing the Nauto team about the product roadmap, feature releases, on-boarding new users, amongst other things.
He adds, “… though its an early stage company, the efforts they put towards the product, and the way they are receptive to customers requests even at odd hours is what makes them different and this is one trait that is going to take them a long way.”