Creating Effective Sales Reports and Forecasts

Sales reports and forecasts are vital to sales management. Without them management cannot properly be done, and sales targets cannot be accurately forecast or set.

Here are 4 basic steps in the creation of reliable and effective sales reports and forecasts.

1. Data must be accurate

A sales report or forecast is only going to be as accurate and reliable as the data upon which it is created. That means that anyone entering sales data­­sales reps, inside reps, sales assistants or any other users – ­­must enter accurate data. This includes revenue figures, time frames, quantities, and any other data that would be pertinent to a report or forecast for your company.

Many companies are quite strict about accurate data entry and enforce penalties for its neglect. There is a very good reason for this: the company’s projected future is at stake.

2. Data must be accessible

Once accurate sales data has been entered, it must be easily accessible for the purpose of creating a report or forecast. In worst cases, this would mean that someone putting together the report can manually access it and retrieve it. Best case (and today probably the only case, if a company is going to operate at the speed of success) is that the report or forecast creation tool can instantly access data.

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3. Rapid Report and Forecast Creation

It is highly advisable that sales management always be furnished with tools that empower the rapid creation of reports and forecasts. Anything less brings the risk of being inaccurate as well as taking too much time.

4. The Right CRM Solution

Today’s leading-­edge CRM solution will allow for data input to be as accurate as possible, as well as providing reporting and forecasting solutions that are visual, intuitive and fast.

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