Spend a little time in business circles and you’ll hear data-driven decision-making (DDDM) thrown around more than a few times.
Everyone wants to say that they’re using massive data lakes and data warehouses to determine every action they take.
The only trouble is: DDDM is impossible if you can’t trust the data. 47% of newly-created data records have at least one critical error impacting the ability to use it according to an HBR study. Considering the rate at which data is created, businesses are dealing with a rapid proliferation of unstructured information that then needs to be leveraged across multiple departments, each of which might have its own system.
Reducing information silos is one of the best ways to prevent data accuracy issues. That means storing information in a single source of truth.
That’s why we think it isn’t just a bad idea to move revenue team information out of Salesforce—it’s stupid. In this post, we’re going to explain why this is and how keeping all revenue-related data in Salesforce can improve efficiency and reduce errors.
“If it’s not in Salesforce, it doesn’t exist”
“If it’s not in Salesforce, it doesn’t exist” is a popular mantra amongst revenue operations and sales leaders alike. It pushes their team to record activities or update records with accounts they’re working with on a given day.
That information becomes more and more valuable as time goes on. “The way to build a high-performance sales machine,” wrote Mark Simmons, “is to analyze all the available data about won and lost opportunities to find ways that will make that engine more productive.”
Because of the huge amount of valuable data within, Salesforce becomes both an indispensable repository of company information—the information you need to scale and grow.
Over time, those instances of Salesforce are likely to become more and more tailored to the company’s specific business processes.
And yet so many organizations take all of the valuable information and features of Salesforce and port it over to some other Finance system that may not be as flexible to the unique needs of your organization.
With all this investment, why not leverage Salesforce to its full potential?
The issue with multiple systems in a process
While it might seem logical to use different systems for different tasks, this approach often leads to a fragmented workflow.
In the common approaches to sales-to-cash workflows, this is exactly what happens. Once your team wins a deal or secures the renewal, the entire rest of the process is no longer in Salesforce.
Every time data is moved from Salesforce to another system, there's an increased risk of errors creeping in. If you’re not going to have someone auditing the information coming out of Salesforce full-time, you’re going to run into huge issues down the road.
Moreover, handling multiple systems adds an extra layer of complexity and work, hindering your team's productivity.
For example, if your GTM team uses Salesforce for tracking onboarding customers, but your finance team uses another system for invoicing, data inconsistencies may arise. A customer that should be invoiced may not be, leading to revenue leakage and cash flow issues.
The beauty of an all-in-one system
By keeping the entire process within Salesforce, you can ensure data accuracy and consistency. This approach allows for better automation and visibility, leading to a more thorough understanding of company operations.
Consider this scenario: Your company just closed a major deal.
In the old way, your Sales team updates all the information within Salesforce. It’s then exported into a spreadsheet, pivot tabled within an inch of its life, and sent over to Finance. Most of the time, if they need to change information, it’s going to get changed in the export, not in Salesforce. Over time, these data discrepancies can cause invoicing errors, late payments, and an overall terrible customer experience.
By having all the data in Salesforce, your sales team can quickly update the deal status, which instantly reflects in Finance’s dashboards, reports, and more. Nobody is arguing about which is the “right” information.
Nobody is questioning whether a deal counts for one month versus the other. The finance team can promptly issue an invoice and build the revenue schedule ensuring a seamless sales-to-cash process.
What this looks like in practice
One of Place’s customers, a burgeoning tech company, was struggling with data discrepancies between their sales and finance teams. Their Customer Success team process involved leveraging account information within Salesforce to properly identify cross-sell/up-sell opportunities.
Unfortunately, they were often at a disadvantage.
Once the initial deal was closed, the data was migrated out of Salesforce into multiple other systems including QuickBooks, Stripe, and Excel for invoicing and other operations, leading to significant revenue leakage and cash flow issues.
By implementing Place, their once fragmented workflow became streamlined and efficient.
The customer success team could update deal information in real-time, which instantly reflected on the finance team's dashboards. There were no more arguments over data accuracy, no more late invoices, and most importantly, the dreaded revenue leakage was plugged.
If this story proves anything it’s this: the best way to get Salesforce data to be more accurate is to do the entire process in Salesforce.
Interested in seeing more about how Place is able to supercharge high-growth SaaS organizations’ Salesforce experience? Check out this short video for a peek.